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Do Employers Put Too Much Emphasis on a College Degree?

Since the 1950s, most Americans have looked at college education as a goal for their children. And why not? In those heady days after World War II, the U.S. became seemingly invincible, an economic and military giant with unlimited potential.

College DegreeThat notion of unlimited potential permeated many families as well. That's why many parents tell their kids when they're in pre-school that that they will go to college after high school. That's also why these same parents start socking money away for their children's college years before they even learn to crawl.

But the cost of a college education has soared over the years, and many recent graduates lament the prospect of paying off education loans averaging more than $20,000 after they graduate. Some schools have even responded to the cost pressures by introducing three-year degree programs.

But does everyone need a college education? More to the point, if a job posting calls for a bachelor's degree, and you meet all the other requirements, should it matter that you don’t have a degree?

Granted, there are jobs for which a college education is a non-negotiable requirement, such as physicians, lawyers, and teachers. But what of an accountant whose resume lists five years of solid experience, great references, but no degree vs. another accountant with a degree, three years of semi-solid experience, and good—but less than great—references?

Which person should get the job offer?

Let me throw this question out to you: Is it fair that employers focus so heavily on a college education as a "price of admission" to a job?

I look forward to your answers in the Comments section below.

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The Blue-Collar Job Makes a Comeback
New Grads: What Did College Prepare You For? 

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