According to a recent study, two-thirds of African-Americans dropping out of college cite finances as the primary reason for the decision.
Financial stress, coupled with numerous academic and social pressures contribute to many African-American student’s decision to drop out.
First, don’t let financial stress defeat you—there are numerous organizations that offer scholarships for African-American college students. For instance, the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) is seeking to raise $100,000 in scholarships for African-American college students. In order to reach their goal they have joined partnerships with such companies as Allstate Insurance who will donate $5 to UNCF for each auto insurance quote that is completed between now and September 30, 2010. Quotes may be obtained online or through a participating Allstate Agent.
Nonetheless, even when finances are in order, the stress of college may seem to outweigh the benefits-especially during a tough semester. But hang in there- I guarantee there are numerous beneficial aspects of college including social capital, career attainment, and personal growth, all things you would miss out on by dropping out.
Many students drop-out because they haven’t found purpose in college. In response, I have compiled a list of 5 reasons why should not drop out of college.
1. Attaining Networks and Connections Is Important
Social Capital consists of the connections, networks, and people you know that are avenues towards your success. Unfortunately in many Black communities these connections aren’t always emphasized or utilized by the youth. Colleges are the prime place for African Americans to create networks, and join organizations that will help guide you in your career.
2. Degree Will Effect Future Income
The bachelor’s degree may not be as valuable as it was 10 years ago, but it is a major stepping-stone to a lucrative career. People with a Bachelor’s degree make nearly $23,300 more a year than those with only a high school diploma. Many students leave school with aspirations of owning their own business or creating their own way into an industry— no one will fund your ideas without seeing at least a bachelor’s degree!
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3. Personal Growth & Maturity Will Help In The Work Place
Every workplace has its own culture, codes of conduct and standards of behavior. College is the prime place to learn how to present yourself appropriately at work. Campus interactions help prepare you for how to act in a professional setting, as well as on how to act appropriately when in social settings with colleagues. Being able to make decisions, communicate effectively, and know how to deal with anything thrown at you is beneficial to your future success.
4. College Students Change The World
Many people fail to remember how much impact college students have on the nation. Students sometimes feel like their voices, actions, and efforts fall to deaf ears. Contrary to this belief, college students historically have been extremely monumental. For example, The Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee were monumental in the Civil Rights Movement, college students have been a significant demographic in electing U.S. Presidents, many students have become self-made entrepreneurs in the digital world, and notably led numerous protests which have changed many political agendas.
5. College IS For Everyone
Many misinterpret the saying “College isn’t for everyone” as an explanation for why a successful person didn’t go to college. It is possible to list 30 millionaires that became successful without college; Bill Gates was a college dropout and Chris Rock was a high school dropout, amongst a non-significant number of others. But I challenge you to compare the 30 who beat the odds, to the thousands of dropouts who live in or below the middle/lower class; the odds weigh tremendously against a dropout. College is a tool to your success—if you have the tool, why not utilize it?
With these purposes in mind, strive to not only graduate, but excel. Good luck with midterms and finals!