Students say college isn’t as important these days

By Ethan Paquet

Oct. 4, 2016

A P.E.I. man says college and university aren’t necessary to be successful these days.

Jordan Johnstone, 21, said he finished high school with no idea of what he wanted to do.

“I didn’t have a goal in sight, and I didn’t want to spend money on something I wouldn’t like.”

Instead, Johnstone decided to look for different jobs until he finds what he is interested in.

He is not alone; a statistic released earlier this year by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Centre shows while more students are completing high school each year, the number of students attending college has decreased, with only 65 percent of graduates pursuing post secondary education.

Today, students can use local resources to become entrepreneurs, something Johnstone says is on the rise.

“If you take a look at something like Facebook, a billion dollar company, you’ll see the creator didn’t need postsecondary to make that.”

Johnstone said while he is unsure of what he would like to do, he feels he he will have a better chance of being happy in life than if he took a course at college that could potentially start a career.

“Most of my friends go to college and they are thousands of dollars in debt. I spend the same amount of time working as they do going to school, and I have no financial troubles.”

Johnstone also believes a lot of courses offered will hold no future to students.

“[The Canadian government] is loaning money Canada doesn’t have to students who are studying for jobs that no longer exist, so obviously they won’t be able to pay it back.”

High school student Matthew Affleck says post-secondary is a must for people to succeed, and does not agree with Johnstone’s philosophy.

“By going to college or university, you open many doors to your future. By not going, you’re just slamming those doors shut.”

Affleck said the guidance counsellors at the school are more than willing to help students find what they want to do, and will meet with students at almost any time to discuss possibilities.

“I just don’t see why somebody wouldn’t want to take [a guidance counsellor] up on that.”