Is Education Really Important Today?
The Cons and Pros of Education in Modern Society
For most of us, education is not the stuff of nightly news. Even if you check the New York Times paper, the education section is not on the front page; you have to sift through pages to land onto the section. Another problem – the headlines in the education section are not very compelling either. You will mostly find headlines like “college education become more expensive than ever.” Certainly, such headings are enough to develop negative feeling about education.
You will find so many people around you saying education doesn’t matter and quoting the example of successful entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs who was a college drop out. If he can be successful without education, so can we.
The thing is, without education, we cannot grow to become informed and active citizens let along successful at career. Did you know you can’t belong to the middle class if you don’t have a degree? The middle class is categorized as white-collar workers usually office workers with little authority and lower-income. Most of them have college degrees but no advanced degree. Their income ranges from $32,500 to $60,000. In other words, even if you are wealthy and have a helicopter in your backyard but don’t have a college degree, you can’t call yourself even a middle class.
Pros of Getting Education
Getting an education is not just about getting a white-collar job and a good salary. Yes, pursuing a college education is an investment in yourself and the future, but the importance of education goes beyond just having a successful career. If you still think getting an education is not important, take a look at these pros:
- Economic Mobility
Education allows the younger generation to pursue their dreams. It offers the infrastructure and amenities that are necessary for their personal development. If you are uneducated, you will always struggle to get basic amenities like healthcare, quality living, etc.
- Civic Involvement
Poorly educated people are much easier to manipulate than educated ones. Also, the life of such an individual is dominated by doing a labor-intensive job hence, they have less time to monitor the actions of politicians. Even if they do happen to have time, they are unable to understand the system, the current political issues and their right to vote.
- More Knowledge
Education gives us knowledge of the world and the people around us. It helps develop a perspective of looking at life, build opinion and have a view on things. Some people say education is the process of gaining information and knowledge is something different. They are right to some extent. However, one cannot convert information into knowledge without education. Education is the tool necessary for interpreting things. It does not just help us interpret lessons in textbooks but lessons of life.
- Better Health Choices
The more educated you are, the better health choices you can make. Even health economists argue that educated people are likely to choose a healthier lifestyle. They are less likely to smoke and abuse alcohol. They choose to eat healthier food, exercise more and they are less controversial about getting vaccinated.
- Social And Psychological Benefits
Less-educated societies have fewer resources such as social support, control over life and high self-esteem. Hence, they are more stressed-out than educated people.
Education and learning opportunities outside the classroom foster social skills among people. They help develop the art of negotiation, the ability to form a relationship, sense of personal control, more perseverance and other skills necessary to prosper.
- Better Personality
Education has a strong influence on one’s personality. It’s the process that changes your mindset. It also determines one’s social outcomes such as marital stability, health, morality, and even criminal behavior.
Are There Any Drawbacks?
To be honest, getting an education is not all that bad. Education itself has no cons. However, it has some consequences attached in the form of student debt. Additionally, some people start feeling proud of their status after getting an education and they see an illiterate man from a different eye.
If you just examine the life of rich people who don’t have education, most of them have regrets. Take the example of Cardi B, an internet sensation and Instagram influencer. She has tons of money, but she regrets not having a college degree. She says she has to hire business analysts to make smart business decisions because she can’t make those decisions herself.