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Why Am I in College?

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Why am I in college? If you ask your parents that question, they will have a quick answer for you. You go to college so you can get a good job and make lots of money. This seems to be the popular answer. The word “successful” sneaks its way into the conversation more often than not.

When I examine this answer, I find it difficult to agree with it. I graduated valedictorian from a class of 18 students in a small country town called Quinton, Oklahoma. My parents were in debt, so I had to borrow money to go to college. Like father, like son.

They told me it was okay to borrow money because I was going to be a doctor and I could pay off my debt my first year out of college. So I packed my bags and moved to Norman to attend the University of Oklahoma. As I crammed in useless knowledge I would forget and eventually relearn in medical school, I learned valuable lessons I would never forget outside of college. I worked as a tutor at an elementary school.

Every day, I could see the mother picking up her child alone. The work of a soccer mom is never done. She would force a smile when I explained that her son wasn’t doing his schoolwork. She would tell me the father was always on business trips and she had trouble getting everything done around the house.

Success is measured in dollars and cents in our society. Using this measurement, the businessman is rich, but doesn’t know his own son is successful. I examined the path I was traveling. I was going to the same place as that businessman, but I was on the road to failure.

My parents were wrong. College couldn’t contribute to my success. As I continued to cram in knowledge about Organic Chemistry and Genetics at college, the elementary school taught me that success was a fancy word for happiness.

I was $20,000 in debt and standing outside the college of journalism. I had always wanted to be a writer, but people told me there was no money in it. I changed my major so I could walk a little taller despite the burden of debt on my shoulders.

Sometimes I see people walking down the sidewalk carrying an armload of biology books, and I want to flag them down and tell them to stop. I want to say they should pursue the one thing in life they really want to do. I would say they could toss those books down on the ground, walk away, and never look back.

They wouldn’t listen to me. The voice of their father, who they don’t even know is ringing too clearly in their ears, deafens them. The father never told his child that he loved her. He didn’t have time. He only told her he wanted success for his daughter, and that means a life of work.

The student will be wealthy. She will have a nice car and a nice home. She will never see her children. When they get old enough, she will send her children to college to achieve success. When she finally retires, she is old and tired. She looks back on her life and wonders where it went. She has all this money, but she is too tired and weak to enjoy it. All she can do is await death. This is the American dream.

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About Kendall Karch

  • D

    I LOVED this piece! I am currently struggling with college and I’ve been back and forth with what is expected of me, what I’m “called” to do, and what I want to do. I never was really into school like many thought I was or should have been. After struggling (another semester) with dissatisfaction and anger, I’m trying to reach out to those who can point me in the right direction, where ever that leads.

  • This was beautifully written. I was just having a conversation about this the other day with my boyfriend and you managed to put into words what I could not clearly articulate. Thank you for that. I hate to use a cliche, but life really is about the journey and not the destination.

  • Naru

    I can’t imagine not enjoying my major. I got a high enough mark to do a ‘harder’ science, but I chose psychology anyway. And I love the content, it’s interesting and once I’m done, I’ll have the capacity to show people how to reach their full potential.

    My boyfriend on the other hand. He is not enjoying his major. He’s doing really well, but he’s not enjoying himself. He’s doing the course that he’s doing because he wants to earn lots of money when he’s done. That is the reason behind it.

    My belief is that if you don’t enjoy what you do, change.

  • Sierra

    I totally agree with this but there’s one thing… Some of those kids WANT to do what their doing. I’m a biology major so that I can help people by being a doctor. I chose my major and am quite happy with it.

  • itsalljustaride

    I love this, because that’s essentially what I did. I started out as a Comp Sci major, and decided after a half-semester that it wasn’t going to be for me. So I changed to Anthropology. Now, funny enough, I work in a job where I manage a computer network, and build websites, etc.

    The problem is, not everyone can do that. I got extremely lucky in finding a job. I have grave doubts about the ability of Anthropology majors’ ability to find jobs in today’s economy. Even the teaching jobs are going away as universities cut back on new hires.

    I had a second skill set that I could combine with my degree to be more marketable, and that’s what I would advise. Find a major that will at least get you a job out of college, that you DO still like in some way, but maybe double major or minor in something you absolutely LOVE too. Adding a minor usually won’t cost you too much time/money comparitively.

  • jim

    what if the one thing they want to do is biology?

  • Grae

    It is more important to follow your bliss than to follow your wallet.

    As one of the aforementioned anthropology majors who will have trouble finding work in this economy… So be it. It is what I enjoy, and I know that when push comes to shove, I am a harder worker than damned near anybody else. I can forge a place for myself, and I will. Let nobody tell me different, for like the good book says, I’ll tie a millstone to ’em and toss ’em in the water. Okay, maybe not, but they won’t stand in my way.

    Let nobody tell you that what you want is unattainable. The only person who can say that is yourself, and once you say it, so it must be.

  • Gretchen

    Wonderfully written piece. However, I’m sure not everyone with the major you used to have hates it.

  • Well… good for you… But I will say this. Being a doctor is one of the few professions that actually can help people in a profound way. Also, being a doctor is one of the few professions (along with astronaut and firefighter) that children genuinely tend to want to become when they grow up. With this in mind, your (apparent) take that no one really wants to become a doctor is pretty bizarre.

    For the record, my parents wanted me to be a doctor as well. I started Pre-Med, then changed to Computer Science, because I liked computers and discovered I didn’t like anatomy. There were many classmates that ate up Pre-Med — they really were passionate about becoming doctors. They were genuine. So I have to vehemently disagree with your opinion that ambition/making money is equal to unhappiness. Personally, I make decent enough money and I choose to limit myself to 40-45 hours a week. If a job doesn’t allow that, I leave and find something else, usually with a pay raise.

    With that in mind, medicine is one of the only fields where you can make good money doing something that (a.) has a chance to be fulfilling and (b.) doesn’t force you to work 80 hour weeks unless you choose to do so. Being a physician (not a surgeon or OB/GYN, etc. who’s on call 24/7) is a great career choice for people who want to raise families and be with their spouses and children. I agree with this part of your sentiment: you shouldn’t blindly chase money, and if you’re happy in a $20k per year job and your family’s not going hungry, more power to you. But I think you (the author) took a flying leap from your father’s point of view to the polar opposite. That attitude of “ambition and money are bad” (which, despite what your intentions might have been, is undoubtedly the tone of your piece) to me is poor advice that will affect kids’ lives for the worse.

  • Manal

    That’s right .. we should enjoy life and its experiences but in the same time we should have a some sort of a real dream to aim for.

  • ev

    i love you.

  • Alan

    Found this via StumbleUpon, and I couldn’t agree with you more. I teach vocational education to adults and most of them will make more than your average college graduate. Here’s the kicker though, only 21% of the jobs in the US actually require a college degree. Save your money and get out while you can.

  • Erik

    Poorly written, and poorly thought out. Your arguments are muddled, and your treatment of the whole topic is incredibly naive.

    First off, what’s your critique? Is it that college is pointless, or that everyone who is studying to become a doctor secretly doesn’t want to? Is it perhaps that the search for material wealth destroys the family, or that success is measured incorrectly?? If you were forced to go to college, that’s one thing, and if you were forced to go pre-med, that’s another. If you had a magical epiphany that success isn’t all about money, thanks Disney/Lifetime/Socrates for that original thought.

    College is a signal to employers that you can do the work. It is a separating tool. College IS necessary to get a job and subsist above poverty, without an incredibly undue amount of work to get up on equal footing.

    Not all people who go to college study something they hate. Furthermore, studying something you hate doesn’t mean you have to work in something you hate.

    Making a lot of money does not mean you’re not happy. In fact, making a lot of money might make some people very happy. Just because your own happiness is not linked to material wealth doesn’t mean others’ aren’t as well. Additionally, making a lot of money does not necessarily mean neglecting one’s family.

    Finally, your amalgam of trite thoughts and poor grammar ends with an attempt at a “deep” ending spearing the American dream that is both tired and cliche.

    Sounds like a poorly written college admissions essay about “something I learned that changed me.”

  • stoutie

    This is exactly what i was thinking, I want to write poetry and paint on my own time, pursue my dreams and it seems like hats going to happen soon. Is there an associates degree you can get for dropping out of college half way?
    I feel like i could be learning for free, and not wasting my parents money. I wont be in debt like 70% of the other students, so i can thank my hardworking parents for that.

  • Alex

    You are providing awful advice to a generation growing up in a society where the college diploma is the new high school diploma. Yes, I admit that college can be trivial in some aspects, but it is the worst advice ever to tell people to drop their books! are you serious???????? Its only four years, suck it up, take on the debt, and you will have infinitely more options in front of you in your future. There are two types of workers in society: college graduates, and the rest. If you really want to sink to the bottom of the labor force, and explain to potential employers why you dropped out of school for the rest of your life, then by all means take this forever-minimum-wager-earner’s advice.

  • Anonymous

    Some people enjoy their major/college experience and some don’t, it is NEVER black and white like your essay makes it out to be.

  • Dan

    I don’t think that the people critiquing this are really looking at this the right way. It wasn’t the point that you shouldn’t be a doctor, or that you should even quit college its that you shouldn’t be so high strung on title and so focused on obtaining monetary objects.

    Its about happiness, and you get that by helping others, and by helping those close to you. You can relate this blog to other people that are in situation’s similar to this and who were raised in similar situations.

    While others, like Erik, are not in the same state of mind, and this is not a problem for them.

    Happiness can be achieved differently for people, some people are happy killing… Who are we to judge how to get happiness… It is an activated state of mind that is learned.
    I find it hard to know what makes you happy in modern times because our emotions are so tied into what we see in advertising these days.

    Advertisements in TV, Radio, Newspapers, all tie certain emotions to a feeling and then people think that they have to go through life obtaining objects or accomplishments just to be content…

    The thing that we fail to see is that we can be content with just about anything, its is a matter of training our mind to respond to our environment and surroundings.

    If you truly feel that you are suppose to make little money, making your form of art, as an expression of yourself, then do it. It will be more satisfying.

    The only thing I ask is that you do what you want, not what an outside influence is making you or persuading you to do. This requires cleansing your mind of all that is impure; such as drugs, alcohol, and TV (Examples, there are many other things that could possibly Influence you to be a certain way) This might be trivial though, because it may take an outside influence for you to decide what you truly want to do.

  • Dan


  • Scott Dorsey

    I love this and as for some people saying that you say people dont want to be doctors and are doing it because someone told them to is not what hes trying to say. what hes trying to say that go for what you love weather your in a med school and want to be a writer or your a writer and you want to go to med school just follow your heart no matter what your currently doing dont waste your time its the journey not your destination that matters this is the best time of your life dont waste it studying away in room live life to the fullest while your young……

  • wei

    This essay is a misnomer, but it was good to read.

  • Erik

    If the message was “do what you want to do,” then it got lost in “college is for suckers.” While I assume the former message was Kendall’s intended point, the essay started with a wrong title, meandered from cliche to cliche, and ended with a terrible oversimplification.

    Also, for the record, Dan – I’m nihilist to a fault. I DO do what I value and not what society tells me to, and I’m not sure what state of mind you’re assuming I’m in. I was simply critiquing the writing of the essay and its lack of coherence. Regardless of whether or not the ATTEMPTED point is valid, the internet is full of enough drivel that we shouldn’t reward something just because it beats (or supposedly attempts to beat) the dead horse that is “follow your heart.” Whatever happened to good writing? Shall we move on next to the Myspace pages of lovelorn 7th grade girls? We can tell them their atrocious poetry is great, with its “deep meaning” in the sense that black and death usually represent sadness.

    My main point (as I bow out at risk of becoming a troll) is, “Good luck, sir, in becoming a writer, if that is your best work. I certainly hope you at least finished your degree.”

  • Andrew K

    If the auto industry has taught me anything, it’s that tons of money can fall into the laps of totally undeserving (but still hard-working) people.

    I should just drop out of college and go to work at a car plant in Detroit. With the (god-awful and nation-ruining) wonderful addition of trade unions, I can make upwards of $30/hr ($60,000/year) screwing nuts onto bolts.

    Otherwise, I’m going to spend 4 years at a university learning about the rich history of the English language and literature so I can end up as someone’s secretary? No thanks.

    College IS for suckers. You’re right.

  • ocgolfer

    not going to college? thats funny.. have fun working at wal mart the rest of your life making 10 bucks an hour at the top of your career there. college is the best time of your life. after that real life comes at ya and it sucks. but what will suck even more is if your trying to make it into the real world with no college education. sure 2% of the people that dont go to college will turn out alright but what about the other 98%.. well ill tell you where they are. do you see all of those aprtment?? well guess what 75% of apartments are tended by… there tended by non college graduates. thats just something to think about. im sure your decision on dropping out of college wont haunt you for the rest of your life. good luck to everyone that was or is to lazy to write a few little papers and study a few hours a day. im sure the real world isnt to bad with no college degree…NOT!!!

  • Bio

    a lot of us are biology majors because we enjoy biology and want to pursue careers in it.

  • Ali

    “Its about happiness, and you get that by helping others, and by helping those close to you”

    sounds like the antagonist Ellsworth Toohey in Ayn Rand’s “The Fountainhead.”

    And going further with this book, I agree with Ayn Rand’s main point: why should one be ashamed of making money or measuring success materially? That’s not your own personal measure of happiness, but it is for a great number of people.

    Your essay is typical of someone who didn’t do well in college, so you would rather blame societies standards for your failures rather than take personal responsibility.

  • Jennifer

    Yep, I agree completely. My parents never told me to go to college but society did. Now I’m here and I also wish I was a writer but I haven’t (and am arguably too far to) make the switch. Nice article!

  • Max

    I’m a business undergrad at an Ivy league school and everyday I learn something new about the world. I love it – and I’m paying for it. College is the best thing that ever happened in my life.

  • Paul

    I agree with Erik 100%.

    Sorry, I don’t have anything else to add!

  • Kilroy

    I would just like to say, I know exactly how you feel. I began my college career as a Biology major but soon found that that wasn’t what I wanted. Sure my mom would have wanted me to continue on that path so I could be “successful” and “wealthy”, but that wasn’t what I wanted. I changed my major to English and haven’t looked back since.

  • Heather

    …but what if those people carrying all their heavy biology textbooks ARE doing the thing that they love?

    I know I certainly am.

  • Jem

    Wow-the commentary ranges from over-critical to simply people being defensive about pursuing what the author does not wish to pursue.

    The author seemed to be making the point for him/herself-and I think looking through the glass of human interpretation to others’ life situations. College is, for many totally pointless, and for others a wonderful enlightenment. Let us not forget that each person simply has personal references that cause for perspective ‘truths’ for the author going to college was a problem because, rather than becoming of an independent mindset vocationally he or she took a while to figure out how important intent and self direction truly is.

    Telling someone to ‘suck it up’ and just go the four years is utterly ridiculous. Do you know how you can live in four years, rather than torturing yourself? Or maybe you belive torture is necessary for gain/happiness.
    The point is that you can die tomorrow-so you better consider just how happy you are with each day and know where each proverbial step is leading you. If college is not making you happy-everyday-then leave and let no man decide your destiny based upon money or anything else for that matter.
    The author makes a good point, for him or herself as well as for those in similar instances-and if you happen not to align then accept that and live your life.

  • truth

    you don’t have to go to college.

    the world needs ditch-diggers, too.

  • Robin

    I joined the USMC right after high school and got involuntarily separated when Clinton was downsizing the military in 1993. I have struggled ever since because I chose to defend this country rather than go to college. I have done many types of jobs, but found I enjoyed IT the most. However, it is hard to find a job without a degree. A simple piece of paper stating you know what you are doing. I am finally going to Univ. of Phoenix, at 42, working full time, school full time, and it is wearing me down. I know I know more about IT than kids who graduate fresh out of college, but the piece of paper normally gets them hired before the experience.
    The Bachelor’s Degree to this generation is like the High School Diploma in the 1980’s. Our parents said that was probably all you would ever need. Too bad they couldn’t see the future and see a high school diploma is no better than toilet paper in the job market today.

  • Diego

    I completely agree with comment 13. You sound like you’re still in high school. You pretend like everyone is in the same situation you’re in, and everyone needs to go through the same grand epiphany that you went through. Terrible all around, with an ending that made my stomach turn. The American dream? Really? And you want to write for a living?

  • jj

    As mentioned in the comments before, but it really is “too each their own”. You went to college to try and please your parents instead of doing what you wanted. That was your choice, and I am glad that you finally got the courage to do what you want. I myself love Biology and Medicine. That is what I want to not because my parents wanted me to do so. I chose to go to university; I chose to enter into the sciences; I chose to apply to MedSchool.

    I would hate being a writer or an artist… Now please don’t take this as an attack on artists or journalists, but rather how I would feel in the situation. I would be bored, feeling like I was writing the same stuff over and over, painting pictures that few would see. I would prefer to find myself developing medicine that could save thousands, or working hard to improve patient’s lives. Heck, I would rather be in a forest counting tree density for ecological research than being stuck writing newspaper articles.

    Sure, you meant that people should follow their hearts, and not be focused on money. However, that is not what you said. You said that traditionally successful people never spend time with their kids. Kids are forced into college/university by their parents. That they are focused on money, and do what they hate. Working to death is the American dream, Ha!. The dream is possibility. The dream is the freedom to decide what YOU want to do, and, with dedication and hope, you have the opportunity to be anything.

  • Jupiter

    This is great. I agree 100% life is so special its not worth throwing away doing things that just consume you.

  • Love your words – I totally agree and its not just in the USA. (My age 50)
    (you only really know when you are older)

    Words my Father gave me …. do something you enjoy doing …..
    (I worked for aerospace and designed in 3D)
    I thoroughly enjoyed it and got a reasonable wage too.

    Reason for getting a job you enjoy …….

    Because you may be doing it for a lot of your life.

    ( To answer one of the comments above – digging ditches – if it is what makes you happy there is nothing wrong with doing that either – and some people that have good hard working jobs with good pay – they also do not have the same stress as people that ultimately can be sued by other individual for malpractice etc. )

  • jordan

    hello, i’m commenting on this article because i find myself in the same place. I grew up in Newcastle, Oklahoma, and I made my way into OCU on a full scholarship. I’ve been “successful” all my life because when your a student and your parents are teachers, success is good grades. now that i’m at ocu, i’m learning that it doesn’t matter anymore. every day i consider throwing my books from my 4th floor balcony and getting rid of the problem once and for all. but i look around and see that everyone else keeps going to class.. and so i follow them. i’m miserable and i still have 2 years left. my only hope is that at the end of these 2 years, i will have met someone worthwhile and i am able to move on into the business world. i am happy with my major, info tech, and really want a job in that field. they say any thing worth having is never easy to obtain so i keep doing what i’m doing and hope that when it’s over i still know who i am.

    thank you for your article, i appreciate that someone feels the same way about the bs world they feed us at college. it’s good because i often feel like i’m the only one who thinks this is a colossal waste of time. i want a job. i want money. somewhere i’m happy working. but more importantly i want to be happy with myself and my life outside of all that.


  • Hello, I don’t know if you’ll read this far into your comments, or how much attention you’ll be paying if you do.

    I think your piece brings up an interesting point and there is some truth to accusations you make. Many people seek material wealth out of a wish for parental approval and/or cultural acceptance through emotionally charged words like “successful.” But I also think this piece brushes off the other side of the issue as quickly as the hypothetical biology student would.

    Is happiness truly stemmed by a “job you love?” My experience derives more from not what what job you do but what kind of people you work with (an idea I’ve seen nobody address). Certainly you haven’t worked enough jobs (has any one person?) to conclude with certainly that you’ll hate all high-education jobs and like all creative-writing jobs.

    Neither you, nor the doctor, is in a place to definitively conclude what career leads to happiness.

  • Wizard

    true! and you are a good writer.

  • Roki

    What about those who love biology? I started out as a biology major and loved it. I loved biology going in though. i didn’t change my major until my second year in college because although I love bio, I don’t like chemistry :/

    but I totally agree that you should major in what you like, not what you think will earn you the most money.

  • To those of you acting like not completing a money-making major equals no success, lousy jobs, lousy life: I laugh. And also groan. It is very sad that the majority of us seem to have no idea what life actually is, and yet THINK we have it all figured out and that therefore, differing opinions are wrong, wrong, wrong. As a result, there are people who never really live at all.

    Good article for light reading. I would love to see a longer one with more depth.

  • David

    Please remember that some people are actually interested in biology and education for the sake of education….

  • tom brokaw

    so your saying the guy who didnt go to college who is now working at the gas station has more time to see his kids and do the things he wants in life?

  • Success is measured in dollars and cents in our society. Using this measurement, the businessman is rich, but doesn’t know his own son is successful.

    My God, I LOVED this piece. Indeed, why bother with college? Well, unfortunately, college degrees do count for a little something in securing a job that will take you slightly above the poverty line.

    As a student in search for truth, I have a few questions that I want to ask:Based upon your experience, do you feel you received a quality education at each level of school, i.e. primary, secondary and college?Do you feel that anything could have been done differently during your early years of education to prepare you for the reality that is today’s society?Do you think that your parents realize now that things could have been done differently with your education?And last but not least, absentee parents. Do you think that the lack of parent involvement in most school systems has created a vacuum in the educational system?You see, contrary to conservative belief, it DOES take a village to raise a child in this society because we have caused it to be so. Families are forced into submission because they need the double income just to survive. It’s no longer feasible in most households to allow mothers to be domestic engineers. They have to provide for the home and provide a paycheck. There’s been a lot of talk about expense of child care. Perhaps that’s an area where we should explore allowing schools to stay open to the supper hour. Perhaps we should have community-based, affordable after school care for working families. We need to provide fertile fields to our children rich in human interaction. Television, computers and yes, the Internet, are not alternatives to the human condition. They are enhancements.

  • Ashley

    I love this. I went through something similar. When I was accepted to my first college I immediately chose a major people would find “professional” : biology. My family told me that biology was good because I love science and there were many high-paying options. But by the time I entered my sophomore year, I left biology behind to begin studying abroad and getting my conservation degree. My family was confused and told me there were no high paying jobs in the field of wildlife unless I worked for the government.
    I told them I didn’t care. I want a job where I can travel, see the world, help animals and people alike, and I don’t care about the pay, as long as I can eat, afford shelter, and clothes. I want to travel, not buy a fancy house and live a never-ending routine.

  • TookieWill

    it is hard to be successful in a field you are not passionate about. the thing about college is that you have more options when you earn a degree. people with no degree are forced into low paying jobs that they hate. you are fortunate enough to be able to search for a comfortable balance between a job u like and a job that makes good money.

  • Jake

    It’s a shame you changed your major, you’re a rather uninspired writer.

  • Paul

    Via Stumble Upon.

    Great piece, but i don’t entirely agree with you. My desire in life has always been to go into engineering, physics, or mathematics. NOT because either of my parents (nor anyone i know, for that matter) are in those fields, nor because i feel that is where i will make a lot of money. i genuinely love the subjects and the places they will take me.(it may be of note that i am only a high school student though, hardly concrete…) your point about monetary success being a “false allegory” for happiness is interesting, however. the point your trying to make, i think, is that people falsely pursue collage simply because that is what they think is expected of them, as in your case. this i agree with. well written , too.


  • Aaron

    You assume that the girl you’re flagging down doesn’t enjoy her Biology books. I’m studying to be an engineer. Why, because I love math, I love science, and I like the prospect of designing things to make the individual’s life just a little bit simpler, and a little bit better. You can’t condemn something because it pays well, just like you can’t condemn it because it doesn’t.

  • I agree that people should not be piling on debt by pursuing educations they are not inspired to attain, but a lot of people want to be doctors and scientists, myself included. My parents are both artists who I never felt an ounce of pressure from to even attend college. I believed I was going to be an artist like them, but when I discovered neuroscience and zoology, I was hooked, for no reason outside of my own fascination. I won’t mind being in debt, because I’ll be studying what I love.

    I found this piece to be poorly constructed, with very diluted arguments. It just seems like your mental model of the “typical” college student is way too one-dimensional. It didn’t work for you, and college isn’t for everyone, but science and medicine are extremely important fields. Not only that, but many people find science and technology-based careers interesting and fulfilling. I’m glad you made the right choice for you, but it’s really not your place to go up to people with biology books and “flag them down and tell them to stop.”

  • Philip

    It’s a good article and message, but some people want to be biologists, chemists, and doctors.


    yeah what a load of BS, when your kid wants to do some shit and you have no cash to do it. or your shit hole house needs fixed and youve no dough or you wanna go on a holiday and youve no dough, fuck that shit!

  • cornonthecob

    “Being a doctor is one of the few professions that actually can help people in a profound way.”

    Being a doctor is one of the few professions that actually can help WELL-OFF people in a profound way. You may not see most of the patients that need real help unless you are willing to work for free, or haggle with the insurance companies until they pay you a small portion of Medicare costs.

    “With this in mind, your (apparent) take that no one really wants to become a doctor is pretty bizarre.”

    Actually, no. The Occupational Outlook Handbook lied when it said that doctors make $125,000 a year. That’s Health Management Organization doctors, which make money on denying claims and having nurses do doctors’ work. That means you generally won’t pay back your loans unless you stick to the emergency room, or specialize.

    “…doesn’t force you to work 80 hour weeks unless you choose to do so.”

    Actually, no. When my dad did his residency, he worked 100 hours a week so he could keep up with expenses. Imagine being a doctor and working for minimum wage in order for them to graduate you from the program.

    He saved for me to go to college, but didn’t intend for me to go to medical school for how stressful it really is.

    I have a degree in biology, but my parents wouldn’t buy me a car in a very car-dependent region of the U.S., and the lot of jobs out there require two years experience or more, and relocation plus “reliable” transportation.

    Without a car, I couldn’t get a job to earn the degree I wanted. Without a job, I couldn’t buy a car. Without a professional-level job,* I couldn’t buy a DECENT car that passes inspection. So I am treating graduate school as if it’s a five year military commitment(no offense to the military, which is pretty brutal), and using the first career to earn the means to the second.

    For this day and age, I would still congratulate a Walmart employee for staying on for a few years. It’s brutal, I admit, but it’s also difficult to take classes at the same time.

    And to other males out there, you can get a decent date without having a college job. To females and minorities majoring in biology and fields tougher, I salute you! And to everyone else, I hope you discover romanticism.

  • ok i have started college and it’s full of experience and i made lods of freinds and i feel confortable since i started and my teachers are funny cool.they always talkabout there personality and i love hearing much about them.we always laugh loud in the class coz people are soOO funny and they full of passion.they always nice to you that’s why i felt comfotable since i started college.and believe me you feel responsable.i know that i feel stuped because im not ansering th answer but yeah…

    your essay is marvelous lady.you should be glad of yourself.

    thanks bye *alisha* 😀

  • Jack

    Uh, it is quite possible to have money and a life. Hell, you can have money and still know how Junior is doing in school. Mayber before you paint everyone with your brush, you should learn more about people. Moron.

  • Kyle

    This is stupid. I’m a finance major and use a lot of books. I love my major. My dad’s a partner in a law firm and works 60 hour weeks. Yet he still managed to make it to all my dporting events and spend time with me and my brothers when he got home and enjoy our time together on vacations (which we were able to go on because he worked so hard). This kid’s father obviously didn’t make time for them, and that’s sad, but he doesn’t need to equate being successful to being miserable. I’m in college to get a job and make money– I WILL be happy with the time I spend working at the job I love(which I will be able to get only because I am going to college), and I WILL be happy with my fast car, huge house, and hot wife. You have fun… being independant

  • shawn

    People who think college is about success and a job have been misinformed. My peers from highschool that went into trades owned houses, got married and have babies long before I did. That is success for them and by most standards. Will the make more then me after 40+ years…most likely not but for the first 25 they have a jump on me by entering the workforce 6 years earlier with training in electrical, HVAC, plumbing or similar…

    I sent my kid to college to get an education and to not expect a paycheck at the end…just be smarter then the average American who seldom values a well rounded and “liberal” education anymore.

    The Get-R-Duns of the USA are dumbing down this wonderful country more then ever…