In this series of five blogs, I have been talking about colleges: why to go, where it’s best for Veterans and, of course, how VA can help you pay for it. In the last blog, I talked about how the benefits outweigh the costs. In this concluding “reason why” blog, we’ll look at a major benefit of a college education. It helps you avoid being underemployed or caught in a job that doesn’t really match your talents and abilities.
FIFTH REASON: It helps you compete for the jobs you want. After I got out of the service, I felt I really didn’t need a college education. I knew the value of my military experience and training. I couldn’t imagine that a “piece of paper” would add to that in any meaningful way. Then in my ‘40s, when I was competing for jobs with both Veterans and non-Veterans, I made a discovery: Many employers gave me the opportunity for an interview because my experience was strong. But each time, it boiled down to the fact that another person was just as experienced and had a degree, maybe even an advanced degree. I decided I never wanted to search for a job again without a degree on my resume.
It turns out that the fastest-growing sectors of the economy are seeking college-educated job candidates. Contrary to popular opinion, manufacturing jobs have not been replaced mostly by low-paying service work. Instead, college-educated employees have been taking over a larger part of the economy, producing more than half of the Nation’s economic value. Those jobs also tend to be the more interesting and challenging with greater appeal to Veterans.
In the next series of blogs, I’ll discuss how you can afford a college education.
In the meantime, check out the Education & Training programs you can take advantage of when you Join VA.