With today’s increasing educational demands and economic struggles there is a rise in the number of young college students working more hours to make ends meet, pay their way through college and try to keep up with their studies so they can graduate with high marks.
The cost of living is rising and the price of college tuition continues to increase causing young adults to find it increasingly difficult to balance school and work. Years ago a college education was not only a hopeful dream but also something that many people still viewed as an obtainable goal. In today’s declining economy that dream is becoming less obtainable to many people who have to choose between working full time to pay bills and support themselves or families and those who choose to put other things on hold to focus on obtaining their college degree. Coming out of high school students are told they need to go to college if they expect to have a shot at a decent job in the future and that their high school diploma is no longer enough.
“All I heard in school was that I needed to go to college and get a degree so I could get a good job someday. That’s all I ever heard from my parents and teachers but no one tells you how to pay for everything. I received no scholarships and not very much financial aid so working while in school was my only option. Most of the times I would have to do my homework and study at work,” said 21 year old Bloomsburg University student Samuel Jones.
In today’s competing society a college degree is not enough anymore and you now need to go to graduate school or continue furthering your education in other ways. This type of strain can be stressful for anyone but can be particularly stressful for young adults in their early 20’s who are juggling a heavy class load mixed with fulltime work hours similar to what their parents work.
Ashleigh Wilson a 20 year old BU student who is currently balancing her time between obtaining her psychology degree and cashiering at Dunham’s sports store. “I knew school would be difficult but I never thought after spending my morning in classes I would then have to spend the rest of my day at work.” She is not only paying for most of her college cost but must also pay for most of her own bills. “I love my parents and their very helpful but once I turned 18 my parents made me start paying my own bills so between cell, insurance, food, tuitions and other things that pop up my money is spread pretty thin.”
Some students are very lucky to have the help and support of their parents but a lot of young adults are doing everything on their own or must strongly rely on the generosity of friends. Kylie David is a 20 year Mansfield University student who has come into a lot of recent struggles lately which have forced her to take a break from school.
“I loved going to school but right now I just can’t afford it anymore. I don’t get along with my parents so they don’t help me with anything. I have to pay for everything on my own and was recently kicked out of the house so had to get an apartment with two friends. I’m working up to 40 hours a week and it still does not feel like enough sometimes. I want to go back to school but with bills and everything else I have going on I don’t think that’s going to happen anytime soon.”
Seeing the struggle many young college students are going through makes you wonder why school assistance programs and financial aid is being cut and is it really fair to make such high demands for education on young people when they are not established enough yet to properly support themselves. Young adults go to college to obtain degrees with the hopes of someday working in a high paying job so they can support themselves and keep up with the cost of living while also being able to enjoy a few luxuries but with the road to obtaining a college degree becoming increasingly difficult it is encouraging to see many people refusing to settle and choosing to also make their education a priority.