YAB Members Report: Is College Still Worth It?

As debt runs deep in students’ pockets, the decision to continue education past high school is no longer a given. In 2012, undergraduate and graduate enrollment decreased for the first time in six years, dropping by half a million. The value that Millennials gain from a college degree is being questioned, and when weighed against impending student loans and a shaky job market, the odds don’t seem to be in their favor. How prepared do Millennials feel to tackle life out of high school and college? What is it like to be in college knowing that the degree you are earning might not be worth what you need it to be when you graduate? We spoke to Millennials from our Youth Advisory Board to hear what they had to say about their high school and college careers, and what the landscape of education looks like for them.
 
The Recession Put Education Into Perspective.
Millennials were no doubt hit hard by the recession, and for many students, it dictated their path going forward. YAB member Maddie, 19, has always kept college in her trajectory, but feels that it became even more important during this time, causing her to “begin to consider graduate school so I can be even more specialized and unique to future employers.” Camilla, 23, took that path as well, “taking the time for grad school, and making sure I had full funding (i.e. a salary and research funds) for my PhD.” Both rely on external funding through scholarships and grants, and help from parents in order to get by. But for some, parental support is not an option. For YAB member Skyanne, 18, “the recession made it clear that regardless of what society says, sometimes college just isn’t an option.” Boxed out of financial aid and without a co-signer for loans, paying out of pocket is the final option and is near impossible for a high…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “Most already-made Halloween costumes only have sexy options. Sexy Cat, Sexy Pirate. It gets old, and I don't like dressing up that way.” –Female, 18, CA

Is the bridal shower dead? Not quite, but many brides today (Millennials) have no interest in the traditional trappings of the event, and increasingly are opting to skip it altogether. Some don’t want to burden their friends with more costs, and others find that the bachelorette party is more than sufficient for female bonding. But one other major reason: they just don’t need them anymore. There's been close to a 900% rise in cohabitation before marriage over the last 50 years, which means couples have all the toasters and sheets they need. (Racked)

Math students have a new magic-like tool to solve problems. PhotoMath is an app that solves simple math equations, and “provides step-by-step instructions explaining how it got the answer.” Users simply take a picture of the equation, and text recognition technology can solve anything from fractions to linear equations. Of course, concern that the app will be used more for cheating than learning is a pretty big concern. (Mashable)

What is college life like for Millennials? One way to find out is to look at their own pictures documenting it all. The “Instagram generation” is on campus: over 37% of college age adults are on the app, and they’re snapping shots of their experiences from the classroom to the dorm room. This self-recorded gallery is a window into the lives of today’s students, their selfies, dance parties, and makeshift indoor slip-and-slides. (NYMag)

When FXX aired a marathon of The Simpsons this September, they shattered ratings records with the 18-49-year-old audience. Now the channel has released Simpsons World, a streaming app dedicated to the show, which includes lots of features beyond access to the entire Simpsons series. Users can look at the popularity of each episode, watch “clips that rock,” and a “rarities” section of video that even die-hard fans might not have seen. (Slate)

Five Below has become the fastest-growing teen retailer in the U.S. by jumping quickly onto kid and teen trends. The store was founded with the idea that kids could afford everything offered with their allowance money, and unlike other dollar stores Five Below skips the “necessities,” instead focusing on the fun things that kids would want. Though teens are fickle customers, and the store’s success depends on finding the new items that resonate with them, so far they have managed to steadily grow during a difficult time with their tactics—and with no online presence to speak of. (BuzzFeed)

Did you know searching Ypulse.com surfaces all related data that we have on the topic you need, pulled from our ongoing bi-weekly surveys of Millennials 14-32-years-old? Gold subscribers can click on “show all data” to explore in-depth tables that breaks down statistics by gender, race, ethnicity, education, and location. It’s instant, current data about the Millennials generation, at your fingertips. (Ypulse)

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