Yes, College is Worth It*

*Some conditions may apply, but on balance it’s true, and those who tell you otherwise are mostly assholes

Tim Wise
8 min readOct 5, 2021


I know this isn’t going to be popular with some.

But having searched every square inch of my house while failing to locate even a half-fuck I might willingly relinquish, I’ll proceed.

From Silicon Valley tech gurus to life coach grifters who think everything they say is TED Talk gold, the edgy thing to tell young people is that college is a waste of time.

“Just learn to code!” some shout, as if these words were a modern “Abracadabra” that would open the doors to all good things.

“Just figure out your side hustles!” insist others, confident that success is just a gimmick (or three) away.

Ignore these people.

Treat them no differently than the idiots pushing Ivermectin and inhaled peroxide as cures for COVID.

Their bullshit might not be as deadly, but it’s just as wrong.

Although many wish to bypass college because they prefer to pursue a skilled trade — which is great and every bit as necessary in any society — for people inclined to consider it, higher education is still worth it.



Tim Wise

Anti-racism educator and author of 9 books, including White Like Me and, most recently, Dispatches from the Race War (City Lights, December 2020)