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The total amount of student loan debt in the United States totals over $1.5 trillion. Families are postponing house purchases, having children, and making sacrifices in other areas of life because of this responsibility.

Not attending post-graduate classes because you don’t want to deal with a massive debt right away is a logical decision. Here are some other reasons why people don’t go to college.

List of the Reasons Why People Don’t Go to College

Immediate Income is More Important

Your family might need the income that a full-time job could provide right now. Some students find themselves living on their own immediately after their high school graduation. If you need cash to support yourself and the ones you love, then there’s nothing that says you must go to college.

Too Many Career Options

A lot of students attend college because their family expects them to do so. If you know what you want to do with your life, then that decision makes some sense. When you’re unsure about the future career you wish to pursue, then the expense of attending classes should probably be avoided.

Desire Job Doesn’t Require a Degree.

Plenty of jobs exist in the United States and around the world that don’t require a college degree. There are lots of high-paying opportunities to pursue, including web development and computer systems administration. Artistic careers don’t need any post-graduate work, and there’s always the option to work your way up in the family business. Many unions and trades also offer paid apprenticeships that you could consider.

Need More Time to Process Things 

If high school was more about skipping classes and spending time with friends, then the challenges of college can leave you at a disadvantage. Some homeschooled students find themselves in a similar situation since they aren’t in charge of their schedule any longer. It may be easier to attend a community school first to prepare for the transition.

Debt to Benefit Ration Isn’t Favorable

When you go to college you acquire debt so that your earning potential increases. Attending college makes sense if you can acquire skills that will help with your future earning potential. More more technical degrees, a college degree likely makes sense; but for liberal arts majors, like writing, it might be more worthwhile to look into online courses or a community college. Make sure to look at websites like,, and the Occupational Outlook Handbook to see what people in your field are earning and whether it makes sense to take on a larger or smaller college debt.

Going to college is the right decision for some, but it might not be the best option for you. Evaluate all of your options and then work toward whatever choice makes the most sense.

Scott Larson