Okay mom before you get scared of that title, I’m not dropping out. But I can’t say that I haven’t thought about it on numerous occasions. When I was in high school I remember hearing all of those ~scandalous~ rumors along the lines of, “did you hear so and so’s brother dropped out of school?!” and I remember thinking wow, that is so embarrassing. I will never let myself be one of those people. I really did not get it. And truthfully, I still didn’t understand it until right now, being in the middle of my sophomore year. I finally get why people drop out of college.
It’s absolutely not a shameful thing. For so long in my mind dropping out was this be all end all thing I didn’t want to happen, and having experienced the struggles first hand, I now know how mentally and physically straining it is. It, meaning professors, curriculum, tests and your surroundings. They push you to your breaking point. I’ve had what my friends and I so casually call a “mental break down” an ungodly number of times this semester alone. And really, that’s fucked up. The kind of stress and exhaustion that makes someone cry shouldn’t be normalized. My sophomore year conscience is fully aware that henceforth I have a big storm coming. It literally only gets harder from here, and looking at my degree works page, seeing all the things I still need to check off before graduation, dropping out sounds like a realistic choice.
College isn’t for everyone. It is a MASSIVE investment, and why the hell would you spend your money on it when you could be earning money right now instead? That sounds phenomenal, working full time and having an income, rather than racking up debt and eating cafeteria food. School isn’t something that absolutely everyone needs in their lives. Growing up I remember reading stories about famous people who never went to college and still made millions. I was jealous thinking that they had somehow played the system. But did they? I feel like I’m being played by the system as I write this.
I’m a huge advocate for going to school and getting an education. I think smart people are so attractive, and I value that in a person. But there are so many other things that people can and should be doing with their lives if college isn’t the right choice for them. Go travel the world with the peace corps, or rather, take a break and figure out what you really want before you invest your money into something that potentially isn’t even worth it.
I’m not dropping out of college, but I respect the hell out of people who do. It’s naive of us to judge another person for not pursuing a typically thought of path, and I’d formally like to apologize for any judgement on my behalf.