With the cost of a college education at an all-time high, most students will graduate from college with a huge debt. Additionally, new graduates frequently increase that burden by purchasing a car, leasing an apartment and adding to their credit card debt. It’s no wonder that these young adults can feel like they are drowning in bills, payments and obligations. This is especially true when their first job does not pay enough to support their needs and obligations.

College students today must begin to look at “college success” from a more realistic and practical perspective. For most students, simply obtaining a college education is no longer enough. College success now means that a student has been able to launch his/her career by obtaining a great job, at a good salary, with an employer that holds out a future for them. This combination can bode well for their social, psychological and economic future.

Of course, there are now and will always be students who say that they place little value on economic security and success. That’s fine, as long as they understand, accept and can deal with the challenges that go along with a severely limited income. Coming out of college with $10,000, $20,000, $30,000 or more in college loans and then accepting a job that pays around $10 an hour just won’t reconcile very well.

Most parents are very much in tune with this stark reality. They are well aware that education loans, living expenses, car payments and credit card debt will have a significant impact on the lives of their children. Hopefully, more students will come to recognize this “practical reality” and will understand and accept this fact early in their college experience. Early recognition will give them time to actively improve their chances for finding and sustaining a career that will offer financial success. However, late recognition will most certainly get them started off on the wrong foot.

Without an adequate income, young adults may be stuck in an impossible battle. Which bills will they pay this month and which ones will they let slide? They will find it difficult or impossible to get credit. If they lose their job, they will have no savings to fall back on. If they become sick or get injured, they will have no medical insurance. Few people can build for the future (a family, a home) without adequate income and savings. And what about retirement? Young adults who are unable to save for retirement will never be able to retire.

Yes, an excess of money, can be the source of much evil. However, on the other end of the spectrum, a serious lack of money is called poverty. Young adults, who have obtained a college degree, should not be living in poverty and should not be forever dependent on their parents for support. Since few students want to live in poverty, the most aggressive students establish a plan and work hard to accomplish the steps that will help to ensure a reasonable degree of financial success and independence.

As Dr. Phil likes to say, “When you choose the behavior, you choose the consequences.”
It’s this simple! What students do while they are in college will determine how much interest they will draw from employers with the good paying jobs.

Since nobody owes them a living, college students who would like to obtain something more than a dead end job will choose to compete for, even fight and scratch for, the knowledge, skills, experiences and accomplishments that can hold out a more financially secure future.

To compete effectively, students with higher ambitions design their college, community and employment experiences around the needs and expectations of the best employers. These students understand that they must give employers what they want. Students who choose not to prepare in this way will never even get into the game.

The college experience is an opportunity to learn, grow, mature and prepare for the future. Because they recognize that success is a choice, savvy students make the most of their time in college. Financial security or financial distress, which will you choose?

Visit Bob’s web site: www.The4Realities.com. Bob Roth is the author of The 4 Realities Of Success During and After College -and- The College Student’s Guide To Landing A Great Job.

Author's Bio: 

Bob Roth, a former campus recruiter, is the author of The College Student's Guide To Landing A Great Job -and- The 4 Realities Of Success During and After College. Known as The "College & Career Success” Coach, Bob also writes articles for more than 175 College Career Services Offices and Campus Newspapers. Additionally, Bob has developed 20 Self-Scoring Learning Tools™ that help college students find success. He has been interviewed on numerous radio programs across the country and also by many newspapers, including The Wall Street Journal. Lastly, Bob serves as an Adjunct at Marist College, teaching a course in Career Development. www.The4Realities.com.