Other paths to consider when thinking about attending college

Oct 1, 2022, 3:45 PM | Updated: Oct 3, 2022, 9:20 am

university of utah stadium and campus...

(Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

(Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — As the announcement of student loan forgiveness has come forward and many teens start their path into adulthood, college is on many Americans’ minds. 

In this conference special, Dave Noriega, Dave and Dujanovic host takes an in-depth look at alternatives to college.

Joining him are Connor Boyack, Carrie McDonald, and Issac Morehouse. They take a look at the power of trade schools, and entrepreneurship.

They also discuss how to have an open and understanding discussion with your kids about whether or not the traditional university route is the path for them. 

Noriega also touches on his personal experiences with the concept of college. 

“That’s right, me Dave Noriega, totally a college dropout, And I haven’t looked back. I always knew what I wanted to do,” he said. 

Is college the right choice? 

Noriega begins the discussion about higher education with a disclaimer that his intent isn’t to bash attending college, just to take a different approach to how it’s thought about. In other words, he encourages people to make a “conscious decision” about attending university.

Crediting advice from Isaac Morehouse, an entrepreneur who has trained young people in preparing for apprenticeships for over a decade, Noriega goes on to say if you choose the college route make sure to have plenty of hands-on experiences. 

He says that hands-on experiences are not to be taken for granted, as they offer insight you may not get anywhere else. Likewise, you may be more knowledgeable about real-world situations.

The University of Washington found that 53% of college graduates are unemployed or working a job that doesn’t require the degree they’ve spent time and money on. 

Furthermore, the university found it will take a college student, on average, an additional three to six months to secure a job post-graduation.

Challenging assumptions about attending college

Morehouse challenges the standard belief that obtaining a degree signals to employers that you are worth hiring. He’s found that applicants with a couple of years of experience (but no college degree) who include a one- to five-minute video pitch and a landing page on their applications get an 80% response rate. They also get a 30% interview rate for jobs that require degrees.

However, Noriega makes the point that although you can obtain a job without a degree, degrees do signal discipline to prospective employers. 

McDonald, a Senior Economic Fellow at the Foundation for Economic Education, discussed what employers are looking for. He said that those who have creativity, curiosity, imagination, and a drive for learning stand out in the hiring process. 

“And you know as we increasingly coexist with robots and artificial intelligence, it’s really thinking more about what are the qualities that make us human that distinguish us from artificial intelligence and machines,” she goes on to say. 

Bonneville International Corporation, the company that owns KSL NewsRadio, is a subsidiary of Deseret Management Corporation, which is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Listen to the full special here:



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Other paths to consider when thinking about attending college