Thesis statement: Everyone should pursue their higher education degree.
First Argument: Higher education as the facilitator in character building.
Second Argument: Higher education as the passport to higher earnings.
Third Argument: Higher education as the boost to the economy of a country.
Counter-Argument: Many people think that higher education does not really matter in pursuing success because people still can get success without pursuing higher education.
Rebuttal: Higher education is one of the effective ways to success.
Pursuing Higher Education
Higher education has been a controversial topic for these past few years. Many people argue that higher education is very important for an individual’s life while the rest are opposing the idea. Nevertheless, in my perspective higher education hold an important role in an individual’s life. Higher education has an irreplaceable role in an individual’s life such as the facilitators in the character building, higher education as the passport to higher earnings, and higher education as the boost to the economy of a country. Therefore, I strongly believe everyone should pursue their higher education by enrolling themselves in a college or university.
First, higher education as the facilitator in character building. Differ from high school, college or university offers students more freedom, opportunities to get to know a particular subject more deeply, opportunities to meet people from different sides of the world, opportunities to interact across racial, religious and socioeconomic, get more insights and experience. In college stage, students are enforced to think maturely and act wisely towards those opportunities. As the character building has been one of the objectives of the higher education in the colonial colleges (Rudolph, 1990) that is why the collegiate experience was intended to shape students’ attitudes and values as much as to stretch their intellect and expand their knowledge of the world just as the world renowned physicist, Albert Einstein said that “Education is not the learning of facts. It’s rather the training of the mind to think.” Whereas college may have a transforming effect on an individual personality (Clark et al, 1972) that basically involved in peer interaction among the students (Astin, 1977; Astin, Sax, and Avalos, 1999; Kuh, 1993, 1995; Pascarella and Terenzini, 1991). As the result, all of the opportunities that higher education offered are positively correlated in shaping an individual character.
Second, higher education as the passport to higher earnings. As the globalization and fast-paced technological changing, the demand for higher educated workers remains intense. It is already a common fact that people who have higher education degree would likely to get a better position and better compensation in their job. As cited from U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics about employment projections, it shows us that people with bachelor’s degree have a $227 higher median weekly earnings than the average in 2015. Besides that, it also shows that the rate of unemployment in bachelor’s degree is quite low that is only 2.8%, 1.5% lower than the average. In addition, people with higher education are more likely to get promoted to a higher position. That is what happen with my uncle, he was so passionate and skillful in his job, but due to his educational background that doesn’t fulfill the tertiary education, he cannot be promoted as higher as he supposed to be. People with higher education background was perceived to be more professional than the one who doesn’t have any degree. If we have a higher education degree after our name, it will likely lead us to a better future. Just like what Eduardo Porter said in The New York Times website “A simple equation: More education = More Income” with more income (money) in hands, we would have the freedom to manage our life in a better way.
Third, higher education as the boost to the economy of a country. In this high globalizations era, the chances for people to work abroad is big. If a country accommodates so many foreign incomers to work in their country, that country will not be developed well. A good country should be able to empower and utilize their citizens as effective as possible, not only accommodate the incomers. Through the higher education, the government could increase their tax revenues (Walker & Zhu, 2013) as the higher education pursuer usually will likely to get a job and have a higher position with more favorable compensation than people with only secondary education (Holland, Liadze, Rienzo, & Wilkinson, 2013). Through the tax revenues, the gross domestic product would likely to grow increasingly. It was proven by the research that was done in the UK that shows a direct relationship between higher education and the economic growth (Holland, Liadze, Rienzo, & Wilkinson, 2013).
Based on the survey done by Public Agenda about public opinion on higher education, it reported that people confidence in higher education is waning. Many people think that higher education does not really matter in pursuing success because people still can get success without pursuing higher education. Actually, no one says that success only can be obtained through four years of study in university. There are many ways to success in this life. Higher education is one of the effective ways to success just like what Napoleon Hill said, “The way of success is the way of continuous pursuit of knowledge.” Through higher education, it could give us deeper insights about a particular subject, makes us more aware of the changes in this world, and it gives us the motivation to innovate something new creatively. Therefore, through the benefits of a higher education offered to us, it will help us to survive and success in this life.
In conclusion, I believe that higher education has an important role in an individual’s life even more in this globalizations era. Higher education possesses many benefits that could empower us to have a better future tomorrow. It doesn’t only give benefits to the individual, but also to the society, country, and economy. Therefore, everyone should go to college and pursue their higher education and the government should also take a part in developing the availability of higher education to all level of society.
Astin, A. W., Sax, L. J., and Avalos, J. (1999). Long-Term Effects of Volunteerism during the Undergraduate Years. Review of Higher Education 22(2), 187–202.
Holland, D., Liadze, I., Rienzo, C., & Wilkinson, D. (2013). The relationship between graduates and growth across countries. BIS Research Paper No.146, 38.
Kuh, G.D. & Umbach, P.D. (2004). College and Character: Insights from the National Survey of Student Engagement. New Directions for Institutional Research. No. 122.
Porter, E. (2014). A Simple Equation: More Education = More Income. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/11/business/economy/a-simple-equation-more-education-more-income.html?_r=0
Public Agenda. (2016). Public Opinion on Higher Education Survey. Retrieved from https://www.publicagenda.org/pages/public-opinion-higher-education-2016
Rudolph, F. (1990). The American College and University: A History. University of Georgia Press.
United States Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2015). Employment Projections. Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_chart_001.htm
Walker, & Zhu. (2013). the impact of university degrees on the lifecycle of earnings: some further analyses. BIS Research Paper N0.146, 36.