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On A Whim With Tim

College Unbound

On A Whim With Tim: College Unbound


Narrated by Timothy Pagendarm

Edited and Published by Hannah Hammons


College, the next step in a student’s journey. You leave high school, get your diploma, and move on to college, right? Some metamorphosis happens in between over the summer, and you’re suddenly a college student, pursuing a degree, and after all that, you get one of those great-paying jobs that college and career counselors always say comes after that college degree. But what if it’s not that simple? What if that’s not where you want to be. What if it’s not possible to go at this point? And what if you do go, only to find yourself stuck in the same job you had when you started your college days, only with a load of debt on your shoulders. I’m Tim Pagendarm with KUGR Radio.


I’m a Senior in High School and an AP Student. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard the words “This is what College is like!” from teachers, even the ones in my non-AP classes. Now I’ll preface with saying that I didn’t exactly have the happiest high school experience, and if i were given the choice on whether go through it again or not, I’d reject it in a heartbeat. So excuse me if I don’t feel like paying some serious money for an experience that’s exactly like high school’s, no matter what increased salary, better job, or whatever the counselors want to say to attract me to College.


We’ve all heard it.


It’s getting more and more expensive to go to college, and more and more students are realizing it. About 7 in 10 students graduate college with debt to pay, averaging at around $28,400. Now yeah, there’s tons of grants and scholarships and “free money” out there. But you’ll have to compete for it with all of the other students who want them. Maybe some of us just don’t have what it takes to get it, then what happens? Well, you get a loan, which means you’ll be in debt. But I don’t want to deal with that. What do I do?


The truth is, I don’t have to deal with it. There are other ways to learn. Online education is cheaper than on-campus education, and even for those not after a degree, just searching around, taking advantage of the Internet’s vast amounts of information can help you learn a lot without spending a lot. Who knows, I might learn better from the internet than in a classroom.


Along with other ways to learn, it’s possible to find careers that don’t even require college-level education. For instance, the video game industry, as well as many of the graphic/visual arts industries, care less about what degree you have, and more about what you’ve done. What have you made? In fact, many of the good classes and programs in college for these areas are less about teaching you about that subject and more about giving you access to the space, people and tools to begin your portfolio of projects.


Now I’m not trying to say college is horrible, and that you shouldn’t go. That’s up to you to decide. I’m just trying to explain how college might not be an option for everyone. That there’s a lot more freedom to do what you think you need to after high school. This has been Tim Pagendarm on KUGR Radio, logging off.


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