To attend college or not? That is the question…

I am the mother of three wonderful boys ages 26, 9, and 7. Ah! So you noticed the teenie tiny gap between #1 and #2, huh? LOL! The joys of having a “built in babysitter”! The gap is there for a reason. It is when I changed my focus from being a wife and mother to building the career I desired. That’s also the same time I figured out hubby #1 was a deadbeat and we (my son and I) were better off without him…

My life wasn’t in such great shape. I had a husband I abhorred, a small child, and a $19,000 a year salary. I needed to leave my husband for many more reasons than him being a deadbeat, but those are stories for a different day. How was a soon-to-be single mother on a $19k salary going to make ends meet? Even back then it was an impossibility. And I would never be able to get far up the corporate ladder. I had no college degree and everybody says you need a degree to get a good paying salary. I couldn’t fathom staying with that man for the 3.5 additional years it was going to take for me to get my degree. He was physically and verbally abusive and strung out on drugs among other things. College was not the answer…

I had two choices — throw my hands up in the air and give up in despair, suffering through the miserable marriage I was in, or stand up and empower myself and do something about my situation. I chose door #2…

Armed with no college degree and a bucketful of determination, I climbed the corporate ladder from a $19,000 a year job as a clerk-typist to enjoy the six figure salary I earn today as working in information technology for a prestigious law firm and my entrepreneurial endeavors. Make no mistake — 98% of my income is solely from my 9 to 5 job at the law firm. I earn very little of my six figure salary outside of my day job. I have a rewarding career doing what I love for a company that respects its employees and treats us well. I have the proverbial “3 strikes” against me — black, female, and no college degree — yet I earn a salary from an employer that is less than $10k under $100,000. I am confident that within the next couple of years that my salary from my employer alone will exceed the $100,000 mark.

Not many months to a six figure salary from one sole source. Not bad for someone with no degree… And I still have 20 years before retirement. Still in the prime of my life and able to fully enjoy the benefits of making a great salary — travel, nice cars, entertainment, electronics — all the baubles that people purchase to make them happy and to enjoy “the good life”…

So why then do the powers that be exclaim that in order to enjoy such a salary a college degree is required? There are many self-made millionaires who didn’t have college degrees when they made their millions. Look at Madame CJ Walker. She made her millions by pure hard work and determination. Door to door. Without a college degree… It can be done and it can be done in a reasonable amount of time, while you are still able to enjoy it.

For me, the answer to the question of whether or not to get my college degree is answered. The answer? Not for the purposes of obtaining a great living financially through working. I am enjoying that success without my degree. Will I ever get a college degree? Maybe. It is one of my goals and maybe I will be able to add that to my list of accomplishments — after then entry for obtaining the “unobtainable” high dollar salary without a college degree…

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One comment on “To attend college or not? That is the question…

  1. Pingback: Not For or Against College… | W.I.N. at Writing

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