The Benefits Of Higher Education Essay

2264 words - 9 pages

Higher education in the United States arose as an answer to the need to train clergy for the seminary. Throughout the centuries, higher education has evolved to become one of the principal means in educating individuals in specific areas of study. Individuals seek higher education to become more proficient in a particular occupation, area of study, or as a requisite for employment or advancement in specific fields such as engineering, management, or the sciences. The benefits that individuals who attend institutions of higher learning realize are more than education; the benefits are numerous and consist of socioeconomic benefits as well as personal benefits for the scholar, including income benefits, employment advantages as well as personal advantages.
Individuals who attend institutions of higher learning offer many benefits to society as a whole. Some social benefits realized from those with a higher education include increases in the individual’s volunteer activity, as well as increase in overall individual health and well-being. A report from Analyst Diana Wardell, entitled “The Benefits of Higher Education,” states that individuals who did not complete high school made up 9.9% of those who volunteer their time, while those with a high school diploma made up 21.7%. Those who have some college experience made up 34.1%, and those with a Bachelor’s Degree made up 45.6 percent of those who volunteered their time. Additionally, those with a high school diploma, with an income ranging from $35,000-$54,000, 62%, report to be in excellent or very good health, while 73% of those with a Bachelor’s Degree, in the same income bracket, reported to be in excellent or very good health (Wardell, Benefits). Similarly, an article entitled “What Are Some Benefits of Higher Education?” published by Degree Directory, cited a 2007 report published by the College Board which states “College graduates were more likely to vote and do volunteer work” (Degreedirectory.org, What). These benefits affect local institutions that depend on volunteers to operate such as food and homeless shelters, Habitat for Humanity, local Boy’s and Girl’s Clubs, as well as various other charities who rely on volunteers. Moreover, the more individuals who vote influence the overall government and its policies, supporting the ideology of our founding fathers. Government is a reflection of the will of a greater number of citizens, and individuals with more education vote more often than less educated persons, therefore, educating society as a whole improves a democratic form of government.
In addition to the above-mentioned social benefits, one may also note that higher education also contributes to the creation, development, and operation of public institutions. While discussing non-market private and social benefits of higher education, Walter W. McMahon, in his report “Advancing Higher Education,” states, “…they likely contribute more than proportionately to the...

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