This is a strange time in history where what worked for people a few decades ago no longer applies to the younger generations. The tried and true method used to be to get a college education. However, in the US the combination of rising higher education costs and stagnant wages has made college a less viable option. This was worsened by the pandemic causing colleges to switch to an unexpected online education experience.
Technology, and therefore life, has changed so much in the last 30 years. Years ago, children were told that they couldn’t make a living playing video games, now a gamer is a very real and profitable career thanks to platforms like YouTube and Twitch. It’s easier than ever to make money now, even as a teen. The internet is now the great social and economic equalizer that college used to be.
Currently, in society, there’s a dichotomy of people, those who think that higher education is a waste of time and money, and those who still need a degree to accomplish their career goals. Of those who still want an education, the question now becomes when should they go? Some people are waiting to go to college until they have enough money. Others are going while they’re young, but becoming content creators as they go, with the hopes of making it big enough to afford to pay for their education. This is a completely different experience from those who worked at McDonald's to pay for their degree.
The popularity of content creation is great, but I wonder if the negative stigma of college will cause a future shortage in professional careers where a degree isn’t optional. I think fewer children will want to have careers that were traditionally seen as “successful” and some of those who would have attended will end up never going to college. Being a YouTuber or a vlogger is now what a majority of children and teens say they want to do when they become adults. While college isn’t for everyone, it’s also not for no one either. Some people still have to become doctors and engineers. I know that some people will still choose to do this, but I suspect that the number of people deciding to do these careers may diminish. Why go to school and get in a bunch of debt when you can…