The Paths of Independence

838 Words4 Pages
The Paths of Independence In 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. closed his famous “I Have a Dream” speech with the lines, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!” Each year thousands of American high school seniors express the same sentiment as they graduate. However, many high school graduates have a choice to make shortly after graduation; attend college or join the workforce. These two paths offer their own advantages and disadvantages, but they both share a common trait; independence. This crossroad can place many graduates in an option-weighing quandary, because the lure of quick and sometimes easy money can persuade many to enter the workforce immediately. Whether graduates are right or wrong in their judgments, they all maintain their own sovereignty. The newfound freedom that many graduates inherit brings forth new responsibilities and unforeseen consequences that help shape the outcome of their lives. College life for many new graduates can be a turn off, especially after years of public education, and the thought of spending more time in class is too much to bear. Still, others may decide it is too early to join the workforce, and choose to enroll in a college instead. The workload for college students can be difficult due to the expense of attending, increased complexity of coursework, and self-governing responsibility needed to succeed. Nonetheless, those who enter the real world can expect rigid work schedules, usually less than adequate pay, and uncertain economic job markets. One noticeable aspect of the real world is the demands employers may place upon his or her employees. Some employers maintain stiff attendance policies and fixed performance quotas. Staying the entire du... ... middle of paper ... ...priate attire. With all the independence and freedom that recent high school graduates possess, they should carefully ponder the possible options that exist. Through abiding by the “check the destination before the ticket is purchased” adage, high school graduates can competently guide their personal journeys in college life or the real world. Regardless of the path chosen, college students and those who immediately enter the workforce will ultimately decide their future destinations. In addition, while graduates pursue their dreams, goals must be set and diligently fostered. The necessity of a college and/or career game plan is crucial, and should not be disregarded. Before Dr. King ended his “I Have a Dream” speech he declared, “Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning.” Similarly, high school graduation is not a finish line, but a starting gun.
Open Document