I know the title may seem like an easy choice to some and a head scratcher to others but allow me to be a bit more specific; if you could, would you choose to play professional sports or would you go to college? As much as I believe in higher education I am not of the belief that anyone should pass up on an opportunity to make money using their gifts especially if the goal will remain the same.
Let's look at it differently. If your life long goal was to be a plumber for AJ's plubing comapny (which is the best plumbing company in the world) and you was offered a position to make money working at AJ's plumbing company fresh out of high school, would you take it? Dam straight you would! Sure, the scenarios are fundamentally different but I think you catch my drift. We as a society put too much emphasis on education because we believe it will equate to us becoming financially stable and offer us job security that we may not be able to obtain without it. Well lets be clear, that is far from the truth! In fact there is a significant portion of society that hold a college degree and cannot find work in their field of studies. There is also a high percentage of college grads who have to work in a completely different field than their degree because there were no job opportunities available in their desired industry. I'm sure you know more of these type of people than the alternative.
So I ask again, what would you do if you were given the opportunity? Yes, I understand the responsibility that follows this commitment at a young age including the million dollar contracts, instant fame and exposure, massive expectations and other certain pitfalls can derail even the brighteest and most mature individuals but I believe there are many more positives than negatives if we look at it with a differnt lens. Financial freedom alone would allow you to have access to professionals and classes to deal with these conflicts. Not to mention, with the emergence of online classes degrees can be obtained from the comfort of your home or hotel room on the road. While Harvard and Yale will always be available your talents, competitive advantage or injury free body may not be!
We can go back and forth and I'm sure there are very convincing arguments on both sides but if you ask me I can't see myself turning down the opportunity if (and its a big if) the goal is be a pro regardless. Time waits for no man.
What are your thoughts?