Is going to college worth the debt without any guarantee of finding a job in your field and with upward mobility slowing or stopped?

I was wondering what people's thoughts are on whether it is worth going to college anymore. It seems the cost of college is going up exponentially, and many people graduate with $10,000s if not $100,000s in debt that will take them at least a decade to pay off. Many jobs out there that require a bachelor's degree only pay $18 to $22 an hour, but so do jobs that only require a high school diploma. Also, I believe new grads have difficulty finding a job in their field because experience is required, but you need a job in that field to gain experience. Without a college degree, I think someone would be less competitive in today's job market even for jobs only requiring a high school diploma. College teaches transferable skills and critical thinking in addition to the subject matter which are just prerequisites for being a responsible and productive citizen in the 21st century. Do you find that employers care that you have a college degree or that you excelled in your studies by earning good grades, honors, and other accolades? With the wealth gap ever increasing, is the myth that we live in a meritocracy dead since being born into money might give you all the advantages you will ever need? Is the economy shifting away from awarding people who have knowledge and specialized skills since if someone makes it lucky as a streamer or influencer they can make many times what any of us in a field using our college degree could ever hope to earn in a lifetime? However, not everyone can be an influencer, or else the economy would collapse because who would grow the food, take care of the sick, and other essential workers who are often taken for granted? Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade my college coursework for anything even with the burden of debt that it left me or without really utilizing it in the "real world".

  • College unless you pursue a specific technical degree IS NOT WORTH YOUR TIME OR MONEY! If you can get a scholarship or a Pell Grant and go for free, by all means, otherwise skip the mess.

  • Job market demand should be part of the consideration when choosing a major or college instead of just personal interest