There is strong agreement across the spectrum of professions that some degree of post high school (secondary) education – trade and vocational certificate programs or two to four year university/college – is not only beneficial but essential in earning a livable wage in the 21st century. Although we cannot predict the economic landscape in the next twenty years, I can say with confidence that each graduating high school student will need to THINK FOR A LIVING, no matter what s/he wishes to do. As Thomas Friedman writes in Thank You For Being Late (2018), “in the age of acceleration where technological and scientific trends are redefining our way of life and institutions every five to seven years, it is easy to feel behind and displaced in keeping pace and adapting to the new trends.” What one needs to know and be able to do for one’s future becomes a moving target; the workplace is being “globalized, digitized, automated, and roboticized at a speed, scope, and scale that we have never seen before” (Friedman 254).
To this end, each high school graduate – no matter one’s vocational interests and ambitions – must be armed with essential skills and “habits of mind” to navigate the future. And although we know the challenge of affordability is a very real concern (student debt is now at an all- time high), the investment of money, time and willpower will pay for itself in earning power over the course of one’s working life. On average, college graduates earn $48,500 annually while students with high school degrees earn $23,900 (NCES, 2015). Given this data, it is paramount that high school graduates pursue some level of advanced training and study today given the progression of technological advancements. There is a way and means to be successful as long as one has the mindset, gumption, and guidance. And support and guidance for everyone is my primary service in this process. Whatever your personal circumstance, you do not need to feel alone in your aspirations and journey. Blackfly College Counseling and others can and want to assist you.