Education can be one of the most important components in creating success in your life. If your chosen field of work requires a certain educational level, your education can be one of the biggest determining factors in whether or not you succeed in that industry.
Below are seven ways that education is the key to success.
1. It allows you control over the direction of your life.
When you get an education, you’re not bound by what your parents did for work or what work experience you’ve already had. Education can equip you to start out in a new industry.
One of my dearest friends comes from a family of chiropractors. Her grandpa, dad, and uncle are all chiropractors. Yet she and her siblings have all gone to school to study different things.
Her education has allowed her to break into the field of biology. She’s had opportunities to tag and research sharks. That’s a far cry from a chiropractor’s office!
While previous generations may have been more bound by their family’s business, education offers children today the chance to find their own path in life. Education provides a level of control over your life that you might not otherwise have.
“Education is beautification of the inner world and the outer world.”
– Amit Ray
2. Education equips you to make a better world for the next generation.
Education can help you make the world a better place. With education, you learn the information you need to know in order to influence the world around you. You learn concepts, theories, and best practices that not only impact your ability to do a job, but your ability to leave a lasting legacy.
There’s a reason why most of the former presidents of the United States have had a significant education. Many of them have gone to law school, giving them the education they need to influence the political and legal landscape of the country.
The things you learn in your education can help you give significant contributions to the world around you. Whether you contribute through writing, philanthropy, or public speaking, education gives you the tools you need to build up a legacy future generations will appreciate.
“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”
– Benjamin Franklin
3. Education can give you confidence in your chosen field.
Your education allows you to have more answers at the start of your career. While you’ll always learn more by getting on-the-job experience, education in a classroom setting can help set you up for success.
You’ll learn about common pitfalls and issues within your chosen career path, giving your mind time to work through some of these problems before you face them. By becoming an expert in your industry, you will have more confidence as you enter job interviews.
My husband is a software engineer and most of his job interviews have included technical questions about programming languages and best practices. Now that he interviews job candidates, these questions help him determine which individuals actually have the experience they claim to have.
Being an expert in your chosen field is important for job interviews that include specific questions about the industry.
“Education breeds confidence. Confidence breeds hope. Hope breeds peace.”
4. Education offers connections that can help you find a job.
People tend to use the word “nepotism” to describe the negative consequences caused by hiring unqualified individuals to fill certain roles. When a job only goes to a person because of a relationship they have with the hiring manager, it can leave a bad taste in the mouths of those who are more qualified candidates.
However, knowing people in the right places can help you find a job. When businesses are hiring, they sometimes ask nearby universities for names of newly graduated students who show promise. The connections provided by a university education can help you land your dream job.
When you graduate from a university, you don’t just have connections to the university and its professors. The connections you build with your classmates may prove the most influential for your future work.
My husband and his close friend worked together in the marketing department of our university. Now that they’ve both moved on to careers in software engineering, they frequently try to recruit each other for whatever company they’re working for.
Although they don’t currently work in the same place, I can imagine that they’ll work together again at some point in the future.
Because they know each other’s work ethic and skills, they’ve often recommended each other for jobs. When you build close connections with classmates, those classmates may help you find a better job.
“Make friends first, make sales second, make love third. In no particular order.”
– Michael Scott
5. It provides you with necessary skills for your job.
One of the main reasons people get an education is because it gives them the skills they need to work in a particular field. Students in university settings aren’t just learning information about the history of a field, but strategies for managing work in that industry.
In my undergraduate studies, I majored in Theological Studies, although that degree was geared toward people looking to enter pastoral ministry. One of my courses on preaching taught us how to plan a preaching calendar, prepare sermons, and deliver them in a way that will connect with listeners.
Although it was several years before I was preaching regularly, this class gave me the skills I needed to keep up with the weekly requirements of pastoring a small church. The methods I learned for preparing and presenting a sermon each week have been absolutely essential to my work.
Many university programs include internships that allow you to build up relevant experience through on-the-job training. This, combined with classroom education, gives you the tools you need to do the job on your own in the future.
“It is possible to fly without motors, but not without knowledge and skill.”
– Wilbur Wright
6. Education can give you increased earning potential.
A study out of Georgetown University found that individuals with college education make, on average, $1 million more over the course of their lifetime. Another similar study found that those with college degrees tend to make an average of $15,000 more than their peers who did not attend university.
Many top-earning jobs require college and graduate education. If your aspirations include becoming a CEO or other C-level executive, you’ll need the education to back up your talent. While there are exceptions to this rule, those without the education usually rise to this level by founding and running a business themselves.
Obviously, it’s not always true that a college degree increases earning potential. Some people like to poke fun at “useless” degrees that don’t offer the same earning potential. For example, ministry positions often require a lot of education (depending on the religion or denomination) for very little pay.
When I graduated with my undergraduate degree, I had a friend that was graduating with six-figure debt. Unfortunately, her ministry degree only opened doors to unpaid or under-paid positions. Although she has moved on to find paid work, concerns over the financial viability of her education have made things harder for her.
“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.”
– Jim Rohn
7. Education allows you to chase your dreams.
Some dream jobs require you to have education. If you hoped for path that requires education, you’ll need to complete that education in order to break into that field.
For years, I’ve been working toward becoming a Board Certified Chaplain. I hope to do chaplaincy in a hospital or hospice setting. In order to become board certified, I need a Master of Divinity or equivalent degree.
This degree is one of the largest Master’s degree programs available to students at that level. For chaplains looking to break into the medical chaplaincy field, Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) is required. This can add another two to four years to the educational requirements for chaplains.
Your dream job may have similar or even more extensive educational requirements. We all know that doctors need education. However, company executives, lawyers, accountants, and other professionals also need education to be certified to work in their industries.
If you know what you want to do for a career, you need to find out what education will be required of you.
“Press on. Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”
– Ray Kroc
Education can open a lot of doors, making it an often necessary step on your road to success. While education doesn’t guarantee that you’ll succeed in your field, it makes it easier by equipping you with skills, theories, and certifications needed to work.
Some jobs may have educational requirements, even for entry level positions. If you’re unsure whether your dream job requires education or not, you should find out what the educational expectations are in that field.
If education is needed, you should find an accredited school that can provide you with proper certifications.
When you invest in your education, you’re investing in your future success. Although the financial cost to education can be high, the reward is often greater.