Monday, April 23, 2018
Business

Is going to college worth it?

Yes, college is expensive. Yes, it's hard to start a career in debt. Yes, you know a college graduate who's unemployed or sadly underemployed.

The post-2008 job market hasn't been kind to the labor force. From high school dropouts to holders of advanced degrees, it's harder to get or keep good jobs. And pay rates for most workers have lost real spending power.

But if you want to maximize your marketability and earning ability, your odds improve with a college education.

A Pew Research Center analysis confirms that, even in this economy, college reaps earnings dividends. The study reported that with just a high school diploma, young adults (in 2012 dollars) earned only 62 percent of typical college graduates' pay. In the mid 1960s, a high school graduate typically earned 81 percent of a college grad's pay.

So, though there has always been an "education premium" for those with more education, the premium has grown, even after the Great Recession slashed professional pay.

That doesn't mean charging blindly into the classroom. There's a lot of attention these days, and quite rightly, to for-profit career colleges that train students for jobs that don't pay enough to repay hefty student loans associated with that training.

You must understand the future earning power of your chosen occupation. Will your education debt be reasonable and repayable, based on your likely paycheck?

That said, here's more education fuel from the Pew report: Typical recent graduates from four-year colleges, ages 25-32, working full time, earned $45,500; contemporaries with two-year degrees or some college, $30,000; and contemporaries with only high school diplomas, $28,000.

That's a $17,500-a-year education premium for college graduates over high school-only graduates. So, is the cost of education worth it? The data say yes.

Comments
Work starting on JW Marriott, but Water Street Tampa expects to have 10 buildings under way within a year

Work starting on JW Marriott, but Water Street Tampa expects to have 10 buildings under way within a year

TAMPA — Water Street Tampa marks the start of construction Tuesday on its first building, the posh JW Marriott hotel, but there’s a lot more to come.And soon.Within a year, developers said Monday, construction should be underway on 10 — 10! — of Wate...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Sears in Clearwater’s Countryside Mall to close in mid-July

Sears in Clearwater’s Countryside Mall to close in mid-July

CLEARWATER — The Westfield Countryside Mall Sears will close in mid-July as part of Sears Holdings’ latest store cuts, bringing the number of shuttering Kmarts and Sears to nearly 200.The store’s liquidation sale will begin on Friday, according to Se...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Foreclosure defense attorney Mark Stopa draws praise, criticism at penalty hearing

Foreclosure defense attorney Mark Stopa draws praise, criticism at penalty hearing

CLEARWATER — Homeowners from as far away as Texas and North Carolina crowded a Pinellas County courtroom Monday in support of embattled foreclosure defense attorney Mark Stopa. Facing possible disbarment for professional misconduct, Stopa also drew s...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Tampa workers accuse General Dynamics unit of underpaying

Tampa workers accuse General Dynamics unit of underpaying

TAMPA — The Tampa call center of a federal contractor is being accused of underpaying its employees. Workers for General Dynamics Information Technology filed wage theft complaints with the Department of Labor Monday, calling for an investigation int...
Updated: 4 hours ago
With lights from Toys R Us dimmed, sales plunge at Hasbro

With lights from Toys R Us dimmed, sales plunge at Hasbro

Associated PressNEW YORK — With its sales falling due to the liquidation of Toys R Us, Hasbro is looking for new places to sell Monopoly, My Little Pony and its other toys. Hasbro said Monday it will rely more on online sales, although it has also be...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Sears’ biggest shareholder offers to buy Kenmore brand

Sears’ biggest shareholder offers to buy Kenmore brand

Associated PressNEW YORK — Sears’ biggest shareholder appears to be pushing for a breakup of the 125-year-old company that has survived two world wars and the Great Depression. Chairman and CEO Edward Lampert — whose hedge fund has forwarded millions...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Lucky’s Market hosting job fairs in St. Petersburg ahead of June opening

Lucky’s Market hosting job fairs in St. Petersburg ahead of June opening

ST. PETERSBURG — Job fairs to fill more than 100 jobs open at Tampa Bay’s first Lucky’s Market start this week, the organic grocer announced on Monday. The grocery store, located at 6765 22nd Ave. N, is hosting hiring fairs Monday through Friday unti...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Swimmer Michael Phelps to headline Crystal Lagoon grand opening Saturday

Swimmer Michael Phelps to headline Crystal Lagoon grand opening Saturday

WESLEY CHAPEL — Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps will splash down Saturday at the Crystal Lagoon in Wesley Chapel’s Epperson development.Phelps, a global ambassador for Crystal Lagoons, will appear at the grand opening of the first Crystal Lagoon...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Big visitor calls at Port Tampa Bay

Big visitor calls at Port Tampa Bay

TAMPA — The 750-foot-long Ireland, one of the biggest cargo vessels ever to call at Port Tampa Bay, arrived Sunday.The Ireland is on its inaugural voyage, having left a shipyard in China for a stop in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula to pick up 64,865 shor...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Tampa Bay gas prices rocket 17 cents over a week

Tampa Bay gas prices rocket 17 cents over a week

Floridians are paying plenty at the pump for a combination of spring gas prices and high oil prices this week. Gas jumped 11 cents per gallon over the week in Florida, averaging $2.74 per gallon Monday, according to AAA, The Auto Club Group. That’s t...
Updated: 9 hours ago