I'm not saying college is bad for everyone. If you want to be a doctor, by all means, go to college, medical school, and whatever else is required to practice medicine. I certainly don't want someone operating on me who can't tell the liver from the gall bladder. But what I do say is to know what you are going to do and then get the training you need for it. Don't go out and get a college degree in education and then decide you want to repair air condition units. Neither profession is bad (my dad is in education and my uncle repairs air condition units and has been able to tell us what is wrong with ours before we even have someone out to look at it), but there's no sense in training for one and doing the other.
What am I going to do? Nothing that requires a college degree. Seriously. All I'd be gaining from college would be a useless slip of paper and the opportunity to argue with a bunch of liberal professors while wasting years of my life and creating a student loan debt to drag around the rest of my life. "What about the college experience?" I've definitely heard that one. And I can truly say, "No thanks, I'll do without and gladly." If I felt the need for a college degree, I would go the College Plus route and CLEP out of as many classes as possible and finish online. It saves both time and money. I know people who have successfully earned a degree that way, and it worked for them.
How am I planning to occupy my time? Of course, I'll still be helping around the house with the chores, learning to do important things like grocery shop well, and cook with more variety (congressional campaigns don't leave much time for that, especially when you don't like to cook in the first place).
Naturally, I'll continue to write and publish books. Seeing how I started that even before my last year of high school, I don't really think a college degree is necessary. I haven't learned everything there is to know about writing and publishing and marketing and everything else that goes along with it, but I don't need a college professor to teach me that. To be honest, I've learned more about writing this past year from following K. M. Weiland's blog Helping Writers Become Authors than I did in the rhetoric course I took for school. Any research I need to do, I can do on my own. I have a library card, a driver's license and access to my family's old minivan, and also a computer with internet access. What more do you need? I always remember things I want to learn better than things I have to anyway.
I'll be continuing to babysit. I really love taking care of kids. Call me crazy, but I loved playing with a roomful of 3-5 year olds at the Practicum all day, three days in a row. Sure there were challenges, I was dealing with kids after all, but my thought afterwards was, "I wonder if I can do this again next year?" I've been babysitting since my early teens, so nothing has changed there, except that I have more experience and don't freak out when kids misbehave anymore.
I am also a self-taught seamstress. With a little direction from my mom, a lot of trial and error, a few desperate internet searches, and a talk with the seamstress at Colonial Williamsburg, I have learned how to make well-constructed, professional-looking garments. The majority of my clothes are ones I've made myself. I don't have big plans for this skill, seeing how it is very easy for me to get sick of it, but I have in the past sewn many things for pay and taught a girl private sewing lessons . . . all without a college degree.
Then there's music. Yes, for this I've had more actual instruction than figuring it out on my own, but I did learn some piano on my own and I wouldn't have learned violin as quickly as I did if I hadn't been disciplined about practicing. (Not that I'm really all that self disciplined, I just was about violin.) I learned those instruments through private lessons and practice at home. I currently have one violin student and want to take on more, in both violin and piano. All I need to be able to teach is to know the instrument and be able to pass on what I know to others. Our piano teacher doesn't have a degree in music. What happened was that when she was a teenager we said something like, "Hey, Christiana, you've taken piano for a long time. How would you feel about teaching Addy?"
Finally, when God shows me the right man, I would like to get married and have my own kids. I look forward to raising children of my own, and to homeschooling them. "But wait," you might say. "How can you teach your children school without a college degree in education? Teachers have to have a degree." Well, it's true that public school teachers have to have a degree and a teaching license, but there are no such requirements for homeschoolers. And, frankly, I think it quite ridiculous that someone has to go to college to teach K-12. If you graduated from high school, doesn't that mean you learned everything you needed to in your prior years of schooling? Why would someone need a college education to teach five-year-olds their ABCs and 1-2-3s? Or even to teach the Algebra and Physics you learned in school? You got a high school diploma that said you passed those subjects. Why wouldn't you be able to pass it on to the next generation? My point here isn't that if you want to teach public school you shouldn't jump through those hoops, but merely that it is ridiculous to say someone can't teach their own children when they passed high school themselves.
In conclusion, I'm still firm in my decision to save time, money, and headaches by not going to college. I don't need it. I evaluated what I want to do with my adult life and came to a decision based on that, that I personally do not require a college degree. I encourage you to do the same and evaluate whether or not college is necessary to your life, and act on that decision.