Determining the right path for your education comes with a great deal of pressure. The decisions you make today will weigh on your future in terms of happiness, security and financial issues. While you cannot know how your future will turn out, taking the time to dwell on your options, so you can carve the best path you can possibly do for yourself, is the first step to going into your future on the right foot.
Going for a degree
The route to university was, and still is, perceived as the ideal and most prestigious route to success but with university graduates struggling to find employment in the roles they have studied for, it seems that going to university comes with great risk, especially because of the debt students burden themselves with at the start of their professional lives.
For those students who are sure about the profession they see their future selves in, University is a great option. When you have talent, an academic flare and you are determined as to the career path you want to take — one that can be attained through university studies — then this is the route for you.
When you are unsure of what you want to do with the rest of your life however, burdening yourself with debt and going to university in the hopes that you will figure it out once you are there may not be the right way to go about this.
The vet route
While university can help students figure out what they love and want to do with the rest of their life, it is important to keep in mind that there are other routes to find success career wise that do not involve university. Vocational Education and Training programs provide students with another option to university — arming them with specific skills for a particular industry through theoretical studies and internships.
Defined as “training that emphasizes skills and knowledge required for a particular job function,” VET programs are guided by RTO rules and regulations so that students can be protected and given the appropriate training to succeed in the industry of their choice. While some perceive VET as restricting students to a particular industry, others see VET as a guarantee that students will find a job once the training is over.
Although VET is not as popular as University, students from all over the world have used these programs to carve a career path for themselves. In Germany, for example, a country which has “strongly integrated” the VET system in its educational program, the rate of unemployment is one of the lowest.
The best of both worlds
Rather than pitting one educational institution against another, as a student embarking on your biggest educational voyage yet, you may find that having the best of both worlds may be the way to go. University students are often armed with theoretical knowledge but they lack the practical experience and with skill shortages being on the rise, in the near future, skills will become even more sought after.
Whatever you decided to do, never think that you should go for the obvious choice. This decision will determine your future so rather than taking it lightly, making a list of what a University degree and what a VET program can give you and what they cannot give you is the best way to make the most thought out decision you can make.
About the Author
Maine Mine is a writer and life coach who, for years, has observed the area of adult learning. She’s traveled to different countries and taught hundreds of foreign students, from 6 to 60 years old, English as a Second Language (ESL).