Should I drop out of college?

Things to consider

Should I drop out of college?


In today's world, everyone has been speaking about skills over degrees. That makes us think, should I drop out of college?

Speaking from experience, I'd say that it's easier said than done. There could be so many possible reasons why you actually want to drop your degree and directly get started with acquiring skills and solving real-world problems i.e., start earning.

It could be that you're suffering from financial issues, and can't afford a degree? It could also be that you feel you're not learning enough, and wasting so much time, energy, money, etc. on something (a college degree) that isn't helping you much seems irrelevant in a world where most of the industry leaders are willing to hire without a degree.

Take a look at companies like Tesla, or even Google, or Facebook. The FAANGM in general (or MAANGM now, since Facebook is now Meta?). They all are willing to hire you without a degree, and since I mentioned Facebook, I know so many folks taking inspiration from Mark Zuckerberg. Well, he dropped out of MIT and still made it big, so why can't you?

All these things seem lucrative, enabling you to save so much time, money, energy, and whatnot, that you'd otherwise be investing in traveling, doing assignments, studying for theoretical exams, etc. It sounds tempting, and as a student, once in a blue moon, this thought pops up, where you start considering dropping out.

It all sounds dreamy and all, I'll give it that, after all, how many success stories have we seen where people have dropped out, or rather, didn't even complete high school and made it big, but that's not painting the real picture for you. I've seen people fail, and fail miserably, just because of one bad move, which is that they dropped out, all for the wrong reasons and inspired by the wrong people.

It's true, some people do make it to the other end even after dropping out, but do you know why it's not mainstream yet? It's simple, as the failure rate is too high. Not everyone who drops out can make the ends meet.

If you're reading this blog, I'm sure you're thinking of dropping out too or considering it at least. In this blog, I'm going to share with you some of the advantages, disadvantages, and challenges of dropping out but if you want to go in-depth about it where I explain each and every point with examples, I created a YouTube video for that that you can check out below.

Let's start with the advantages of dropping out of college first.



We know that doing college takes a substantial amount of time. On average, the age between 17 to 25 years, in any human's life, are the most productive years of their life. It is the time when your career and along with it, your life are shaping up.

Spending 5 days in college, from 9 in the morning (not to forget the time it takes to wake up, get ready, and reach the college) till 5 in the late afternoon is like doing a 9 to 5 job. On top of that, there are countless hours spent doing assignments and studying for exams, that too on a vastly outdated curriculum.

It just feels wrong, and thinking how many hours you'd be saving if you just take this call, it's huge.

Technology is all about solving problems and inconveniences that people might face otherwise. For example, back in the day when some IT companies started facing issues in managing the Android as well as iOS application teams separately and were actually leaking a lot of money, more than what they were making into their tech teams, the tech community came up with a solution - hybrid mobile applications - ones that use the same code base to run both on Android as well as iOS and technologies like React Native and Flutter were born.

Similarly, new versions, new technologies, new languages, new tools, and new frameworks would keep coming up. Industries and companies adapt to them quickly, but the curriculum remains the same.

For most students, by the time they graduate and start looking for internships and jobs, the things they learned in college are irrelevant.


We know that education is costly. There are so many students, especially in developing countries like India, whose family cannot afford a college degree but still ends up taking massive loans that would take years to pay off, that too if their kids get a good job.

I've seen students who come from families that can't even afford a mere fee of INR 5,000 to 10,000 per semester. They simply don't carry privileges enough as some others might do.

Now that's just the fees I'm talking about. Add up the cost of stationery, commute or hostels, and whatnot per semester and multiply it by 6 or 8 (based on the number of semesters you have in your degree program) and just see how much money you'd be spending just to get a stamp that you're educated.

Instead, you could consider spending all that money on things you're passionate about, like traveling (which is also good for networking and meeting new people) or starting a new small business.

Personally, I also believe that "time" == "money" so given how much time you invest in education, it's a wealth to lose all in all.


Most of us, in today's generation and especially after covid19 and lockdowns, know that remote working is a thing. We all aspire for it.

Ask yourself, why do you want a remote job? It's pretty simple.

High paying jobs, working from the comfort of your home or traveling while working with no boundations in terms of timings, etc.

All in all, it's the freedom that you're looking for, and achieving that freedom early after you drop out of college? With most of the colleges having a minimum mandatory attendance quota, failing to fulfill it would result in you not being promoted to the next semester, just imagine not waking up early in the morning, or spending a fixed number of hours sitting in a hall attending lectures, or meeting deadlines for your assignments, and studying at your own hours without the pressure of scoring good in the upcoming exams.

That's freedom my friend, and it's pretty darn tempting! Looking at all these things I've mentioned so far, one might think it's awesome, let's do it but wait! Hold your horses and check out some of the disadvantages of dropping out of college.



It's pretty obvious. You don't have a formal degree, which means you've cut down your safety net. How does this affect you in today's era? Let me elaborate.

Back in the previous century, when the IT companies were still forming, a degree was the only means to identify if you even have the relevant skills or not.

Now hiring usually takes a lot of resources, both in terms of investing money to reach out to and find good candidates, and time to take their interviews and evaluate if they are a good fit for the role or not.

Having a degree was essential back in the day to shortlist candidates, or hire them directly from universities to save both time and money.

It's not the case anymore since the internet and more importantly, content creation have gone mainstream. People can now easily learn from the internet and hence the trend to hire people without a degree has been coming up, but there are still a lot of companies, which were born in the previous decade or earlier, and for them to change this company-wide and start hiring without a degree is not an easy thing.

One of my friends didn't get into PayTM after clearing all his rounds and salary negotiations, because when his HR asked him for a degree to complete the paperwork, he told them he doesn't have one. Imagine that!

Imagine being so talented that you could clear all rounds in an interview for a mid-senior position without having a degree, but the company still rejecting you. It's a horror story, but a harsh reality at the same time.

Not having a degree would cut you off from a lot of such opportunities, and you wouldn't be eligible to get hired by a lot of companies, which leaves fewer opportunities for you but with equal competition than any other individual with a degree. You need to be really good to stand out for the opportunities that you'd still have to stay afloat.

Network, Friends & College Life

When you go to a college, you have a lot of peers around you. They might be your batch mates, your seniors, your juniors, or alumnus. It becomes a good network for you, without going anywhere else.

Some of them are even going to become your friends for life and trust me, this is very important. The only regret I ever have for not going to college is that I couldn't make those friends for life I hear so much about, that people make in college.

It's not that big of a deal, but you should be mentally prepared for it because going forward, you're going to find a lot of individuals fondly remembering their friends from college, or their college days.

I've lived in a FOMO (fear of missing out) for a few years after making that decision, and even considered going to a private college in 2020, not for a degree, but to make those friends and live that social life and experience what it's like to be a college student. I was going pretty good career-wise without a degree, and thanks to myself back then I didn't take that call otherwise it would have been the stupidest decision of my life plus never expected COVID19 to happen either, but I'm just saying.

It might be irrelevant to you, but it's worth mentioning.


I can't emphasize this, but be prepared to lose respect from your family, friends, relatives, neighbors, and society in general.

Not talking about all the open-minded folks out there, but the truth is, dropping out is not mainstream yet, and our society filled with old school people doesn't understand that not getting a degree doesn't mean no hope in life.

Directly or indirectly, they would irritate you and your parents with questions about what you're doing/going to do in your life and neither you nor your parents are going to have an answer for that.

Some students think that they have unlimited time after dropping out, that they've got all the time in the world to study and do something in life, but that's not the case. The pressure would start building up, and you're going to stay stressed. Each day, or even, each and every hour you'll procrastinate is going to feel heavy, adding up to the stress that you already have. Why?

Simply because, you'd start realizing that it's not going as you "planned" it to go. You'd start regretting each day, each hour you waste, and would continuously keep feeling that you're falling behind others in the rat race, because others still have a degree, but you don't even have that and if you fail, you're going to have to start over and would lose some precious years of your life.

Just think about it, and let it sink in because it's the truth.



One thing that is really out there for people who choose to drop out of college, is the isolation that they face while learning. They don't really have any peers to learn with or discuss their learnings with. It also feels like there's no one to guide you.

This was a major issue for me when I took a drop, and to solve this, in my community Virtual Tech School, I'm trying to set up a culture of sharing your weekly agenda and monthly Good-Bad-Ugly to feel connected with the community and track your progress at the same time. You can also stay updated on what others are up to, and if something appeals to you, feel free to discuss it with them or in the community. :D

Neither a Student Nor a Professional

It's a pain, really, but once you choose to drop out of college, you're no more considered a student while you're still not a professional. You'd end up losing your educational institution's official email ID.

This email ID is required to avail any of the benefits or events that are available for students. You won't be able to avail any student discounts, and you also won't be able to avail other benefits like Github's Student Pack, or participate in corporate events for students like Microsoft Student's Program, etc.

All because these things require an official student's email ID, which you won't have.


With all these things mentioned, I know it's still a pretty difficult choice to make. I devised a simple formula (you could say), which can help you determine if you should even consider dropping out in the first place or not.

Watch the last chapter of this video where I explain it to you, and take your decision accordingly.

Just know that whatever decision you end up taking, stand firm with it and do justice to it. Don't regret taking it and make it work.

Thanks for reading! (^_^)