College is supposed to be the most valuable investment we can possibly make. Four years (or more) of our lives plus tens of thousands of dollars and we walk away with a skill set to make a living. Right?
Sure, employment rates are highest amongst those holding bachelor’s degrees or higher.
Shortly before the pandemic leveled the playing field for everyone, the unemployment rate for high school dropout was 3.9 percent, but only 2 percent for college grads.
Those numbers look pretty impressive, don’t they?
Together, they suggest that a college degree is all but quintessential to success.
So why does at least one study find that only 13 percent of U.S. adults, 11 percent of C-level executives, and 6 percent of university trustees say college graduates have work-ready skills?
What’s really going on?
In my new book, Skip the Degree, Save the Tuition, I take a good look at what the higher education industry is really up to and lay out an actual path to success.
Along with my co-author, Dr. Ai Addyson-Zhang (of the #ClassroomWithoutWalls fame), I’ll show you how to thrive as a confident, self-taught professional who makes money online with a valuable skillset.
Without that expensive student loans.
Learn, Labor, and Level Up With the Skills You Need to Succeed
Tuition has risen 400 percent since 1990, and it’s causing people to rethink college.
In 2013, 74 percent of people claimed that a college education was “very important.” In 2019, just 41 percent agreed with that statement.
That’s because people are catching onto what the higher education industry is doing – and it’s NOT helping us lead richer, more successful lives.
So, what are we to do?
Simple: skip the degree and get the skills.
To succeed in today’s world, you need real, tangible skills.
And the best part? You can get them yourself. (I know because I’ve done it).
The Four-Step Path to Success
In Skip the Degree, Save the Tuition, I lay out the path to success that I took to get to where I am today.
- LOVE What You Do. Identify your interests, passion, and aptitude to figure out what it is you really love doing.
- LEARN Everything You Can. Forget college – internet is your oyster. Anything you want to learn, you can learn online.
- LABOR Away. Roll up those sleeves and get your hands dirty. Success is 10 percent inspiration and 90 percent perspiration – so put those fears away and get to work!
- LEVEL UP to the Big League. Consistent quality over time lets you build your skills, establish your credibility, and charge MORE.
It’s really that simple. (It’s NOT going to be easy, but it WILL be worth it.)
Who Should Skip the Degree, Save the Tuition?
This book is for you if you’ve ever said one or more of the following:
- “I’m not sure the expense is worth it.” If you’re not graduating with a solid set of skills for an in-demand job, then you’re right. It’s not.
- “I have no idea what I want to major in.” The first step toward success involves loving what you do. That means self-reflection, personality mapping, and spending time exploring.
- “My life would look so much different if I didn’t have these student loans.” Let’s get to work changing your life! The best part about skills is that you can learn them at any time. I’ll show you how to do it online yourself.
- “I don’t trust this quick and easy process this person is selling.” You’ve got good instincts – success is NEVER quick or easy! Consistency is key.
- “I want to do [X] but I have no idea how to get there.” Half the battle is knowing where to go! Once you’ve got a goal, you can start creating the path. This book shows you how to do it – no strings attached!
- “I’m not sure if this course, guru, etc., actually knows what they’re talking about.” Did they build a successful brand from the ground up? Do they have years of experience helping students in traditional education and in job training? Dr. Ai and I do – and we prove it with research, expert testimonials, and our own thriving brands.
The Story Behind Skip the Degree, Save the Tuition (What Inspired My New Book)
If I had set out to nail a “trend,” or just make money, I would have given up on the journey weeks in. It took over $10,000 (my own personal investment) to produce this book.
Skip the Degree is a literal byproduct of both my co-author and myself setting out to TRANSFORM education. It is a heart mission, and nothing less.
Dr. Ai has two degrees. Yet, she identifies as a “professor dropout.” This incredibly inspiring and dear friend of mine dropped out of a highly paid, well-respected position teaching college PR and social media.
She resigned from her six-figure position when she saw firsthand in the classroom that her students weren’t graduating with real-life skills. It was a wakeup call she couldn’t ignore. She became a practitioner, and today she’s teaching her students life-changing skills.
On the flip side, I run a writing agency, Express Writers, that takes on 200-300 projects per month. We’ve been around for 10 years, mostly because we have high standards. We pay multiple five-figures out to our contractors every two weeks.
Show up. Write well. Deliver on time. Consistently. We have to hire, CONSTANTLY. Those traits are, oddly, very hard to find.
Even in this digital-first era, we’re STILL filtering through college grads, looking for immediate client-ready writing skills.
And we find that it’s the self-started freelancer that followed a passion and taught themselves a skill that we’re able to hire.
Not the college graduates.
Then, when COVID-19 hit last year, the dilemma became a problem I truly couldn’t ignore anymore. WAY MORE candidates flooded the online workplace. Our ability to hire went from 1% to .5%.
Skip the Degree, Save the Tuition was a book I’d planned to research and write later in the year. But, knowing that this book was the Holy Grail for this problem… it would teach EVERYONE THE pathway on how to uncover their passion and map a direct path to a digitally PROFITABLE skill set, I made it a goal to launch the book within a year.
Well, we did it. We conducted 50+ interviews (but who’s counting), worked with countless people, and did immeasurable work to put forward the powerful information revealed in our book. And we did it all inside a year.
Skip the Degree is our BIG, GROUND-FLOOR answer to today’s problem in education.
Want more of the “why” behind the book? Watch the full 20-minute interview I recorded with Dr. Ai Addyson-Zhang on YouTube.
Skip the Degree, Save the Tuition, and Step Up Your Game
It’s never too late to get the skills you need to thrive in today’s world.
Whether you’re thinking about college, hitting reset on your career, or retooling to be better equipped for tomorrow, this book is for you.
Go forth and grow into the confident, competent, self-taught, well-paid professional that you strive to be.