Prepare for College

What's the big deal about college?
Going to college after you've just spent 12 or 13 years to get your diploma may be the last thing you want to hear about. (We're counting from kindergarten, OK? We're not saying you spent 12 or 13 years in high school.) But college increases your earning power and your ability to enjoy a better life.

With a bachelor's degree you can make about $16,300 a year more than your friends with just a high school diploma. Do the math: $16,300 times a 40-year career is more than half a million dollars ($652,000 to be exact)! Even if you don't like math, you have to love that!

All the excuses why you shouldn't go

My grades aren't good enough. Good grades are important. But colleges don't just look at grades and test scores when making admission decisions, either. Extracurricular activities, talent in arts or sports, and community service can also play a part in their decision. So, you aren't going to be the valedictorian? Plenty of successful college students weren't either!

I don't know what I want to do with my life. Join the club - and it's one of the biggest clubs around. Chances are that whatever you want to do will require you to have a college degree. If you go to college, you'll have to take lots of courses in lots of different areas. Colleges call those general requirements. You might very well find out what you want to do with your life when you're taking those classes.

I can't afford it. Most college students and their families don't sit down and write a check for college. There are all kinds of financial aid programs to help you out. Besides, after finding at how much more an education can pay you over a lifetime, how can you NOT afford it?