For The High School Class of 2020

*This advice applies to Post Secondary Education in the USA.

This isn’t meant to be pessimistic, but put you in the best position for success. I’m not going to give what you want to hear, but I’m saying this to better assist you into adult life. Your high school might say everyone should go from high school into university, but I’m telling you right now, that’s just not the case for everyone. Here are the kinds of people who shouldn’t go to university to earn a degree (in my opinion):

*Students with unweighted G.P.As under 3.5
*Students who don’t study at all (even if your G.P.A is 3.5) above.

Students with low G.P.As who thought high school course work was hard will find it even harder in university. Students who never studied in high school might be surprised how much they have to study once they enter university. I know people personally who were poor performing high school students who went onto university and are still going to a 2 year college, 7 years later, struggling academically.

Instead other routes which are less academically difficult, put in you little to no debt, and take a shorter period of time:

*Join the military
*Earn a certification from Trade School
*Take a coding bootcamp such as lambda school

Are there exceptions to low performing high school students going onto finishing a university degree within 4-6 years? Yes, but statistically the odds are against these students. If you still feel like you want to give university a shot then go to community college and see if you can earn at least a passing G.P.A there. If after the first semester, you don’t pass, then give up. Nobody is good at everything and it’s time to find a career path outside a degree program. Don’t tell me I didn’t warn you. Sometimes the truth hurts.


While I 100% agree going to college is not needed to have a successful career and life, I don’t think an unweighted GPA of 3.5 or under is too low at all if you want to go to college and succeed. I think my weighted GPA leaving high school was around 3.7 or something so my unweighted was probably closer to 3.5 and I still got into the school with the second lowest admission rate early admission and I’m graduating in 4 years. But you can also go to community college or school with lower admissions requirements and still get a great education. And even transfer to a more challenging university later on.

Bottom line is no one should go to college because they think they have to have a degree to get a job that pays well. I have relatives that took a few community college courses or went to technical school and they’re doing great. My brother got his GED and now (after many years of hard work) he’s a GIS specialist and doing well. Also, college can be very expensive and if you aren’t sure you need it for what you want to do in life then I’d recommend people take some time to think about their future. Though, I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I entered college, I did know I would need a degree since I was interested in science and research. And if you do want to get into a field where you 100% need a degree but your GPA isn’t the best that does not mean you can’t still succeed in college. There’s a huge variety of universities with different teaching styles, course lengths, degree options, etc. Even online college.

Just do what you want to do, make sure you genuinely want that, and work hard.


Also ill note that GPA scoring is very different depending where you went to high school. And many high schools and school districts aren’t as fortunate to have as many AP and gifted programs to help students stand out in college applications. That, however, is not a reflection of the student’s ability and they shouldn’t let that hold them back.


I’ll share this with cousin :stuck_out_tongue::hugs:

Great Piece!

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I agree that not everyone needs to go to university but to say you should go to the military or a trade school just because you have below a 3.5 is just stupid. And the coding boot camp part kind of contradicts everything you said. You have to be pretty smart to do anything in cs. I never studied once in high school my gpa was like 3.2 and I’m doing fine in university. And I know plenty of people that slacked off in high school and are now doing great in college. It is an adjustment and you definitely have to work harder but stop acting like you have to Einstein to get a degree. And definitely don’t tell people to give up, that’s not cool


dont tell people to just give up that’s not okay, plus many people in my family had a 3.0 gpa and graduated with a bachelors.


I don’t know about the technical requirements for getting a degree but I agree this should no longer be an automatic option that everyone should pursue. I have 30k in debt and nothing to show for it because I was made to believe my worth was tied to my earning or prestige value. Meaning how much my mother could gloat about her daughter in culinary school or her daughter the photographer. It was a status thing for her and something she wanted the ability to show off without contributing anything (I moved out at 13).

Scenarios like mine and many others can force people into impossible financial situations from which they can’t recover. Until the university system is fixed and it becomes SIGNIFICANTLY more accessible for those that don’t come from wealth, it needs to be a serious decision that shouldn’t be undertaken unless completely prepared. The current situation highlights how behind our educational system is. It’s built for profit, not education.

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Ehh I think where you’re getting these ideas is that society has the idea that everyone should go to school and obtain a 4 year degree. I know people I went to school with who are making 150k+ without a degree because they started their own businesses. Degrees do not determine your worth or future earning, they only help you in getting where you want to go. A piece of paper does not guarantee you a job, it gets you the interview and your skills determine your future. Too many people believe that they can float through University with a C average, get their degree, and immediately become a prospect for a job in their career field! It’s just not logical, the piece of paper you receive shows what you’re supposed to know, not what you’re eligible for.


My husband is actually a recruiter for the Marine Corps. A lot of kids don’t know much about the military and the benefits it provides.
Some facts if anyone is thinking about the military.

-If you enlist for 4 years but still want to go to college, the marine corps will pay 100% tuition assistance.

  • Theres over 300+ jobs(i.e. mechanics, aviation, engineering, intelligence) and the marine corps will train and pay you. My husband is a weather forecaster15yrs. So when he gets out, he could be a meteorologist. A solid job.
  • starting pay is under $2,000/mo.

You can always contact your local recruiter for more information. It doesn’t hurt to check out all your options when you graduate h.s. Make sure you pick the right plan for you :blush:


I agree, but I know this will assist some people out there. Not everyone is good at the same things. We’re not all going to become doctors and lawyers.

Hopefully this assists him in his career path and your welcome

my advice is contextual

just do what’s best for you.

shoot that’s facts! i know people who have graduated university and went straight to selling furniture thinking he would get hired for a high paying job just because he had a degree but with no career path in mind.

if could pin to this top I would. This is some solid advice for seniors in high school.

True but university is required for professions with far less rigor than being a lawyer or doctor too