Not everyone should go to university

A university degree is one of the most expensive purchases a person makes in his life and there is no guarantee that one will succeed in the environment or secure employment.
A university degree is one of the most expensive purchases a person makes in his life and there is no guarantee that one will succeed in the environment or secure employment.PHOTO: ST FILE

In the 1960s and 70s, a very small percentage of the population were graduates, which made their degrees valuable and made it easier for them to find jobs.

In 2017, however, there is a much larger percentage of the population with tertiary education. When the number of people with degrees increases, the qualification becomes less special in the eyes of employers.

A university degree is one of the most expensive purchases a person makes in his life and there is no guarantee that one will succeed in the environment or secure employment.

The university environment may not be for everyone. Some people may benefit much more from learning a trade or starting a business as opposed to taking out a large loan to go to university.

If a person is undecided, he should not go to university immediately after junior college or polytechnic. He can always get a job and save money.

Meritocracy should not be defined only in terms of intelligence, but also in terms of skills.

Cheng Choon Fei

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 15, 2019, with the headline 'Not everyone should go to university'. Print Edition | Subscribe