Does a College Degree Guarantee Career Success?

Imagine being eighteen years old, fresh out of high school and being faced with a life-altering choice: go to college, take out more debt than your teenage self can ever truly comprehend, graduate, get an entry-level job, and work your way up. Live the so-called “American Dream.” Or, skip traditional higher education entirely and go directly into the workforce, where your wages may be lower over your lifetime, but so will your debt-to-income ratio.

What if there was a third option? It’s one that an entire generation, not wanting to make the mistakes of the generations before them, are starting to make. Focus on skills, not traditional degrees, and join the workforce without crippling debt. Employers are starting to see the value in hiring based on skill and competency rather than pedigree and it’s making a huge impact on the world of work.

This is not an argument against a college education. This is an argument towards choices and freedom. Freedom to learn new skills, freedom to enter the adult world without crippling debt, the choice to pick an employer that is beneficial to your life and career goals. Companies like Apple, Google, Hilton Hotels, and several others have removed the requirement for a bachelor’s degree on their job postings, which coincides perfectly with Generation Z taking on less student loan debt than the Millennial generation before them.

The transitions among high school, college, career are no longer linear. There are more options today than ever to find a skill that has real-world demand and turn that into a well-paying job without ever having to go to college. With digital credentials, those skills turn into verifiable proof that a person can do what they’re claiming they can do. That portable evidence of competency is quickly turning into a labor market that can’t be ignored.


If you’re interested in learning more about the impact digital credentials can have on your organization, fill out the form below and a member of our team will be in touch.

Topics: Higher Education, Human Capital Management

By  Patricia Diaz