Most high school students feel that they must attend college in order to have a career and be successful. But in the digital age we are living in today, there are so many other options and paths to follow that do not require a college degree.
Now don’t kid yourself, this does not mean that you don’t need to build special skills and knowledge. It’s just a matter of how you go about doing this.
Let’s think about the “traditional” path most high school students take:
You pick a college to attend. You then spend the first 1-2 years completing “core” requirements that probably have little meaning on what you will be doing in the real world. Then at some point you pick a major to focus on, which essentially is locking you into a very specific industry and job that you “hope” you will like.
After about 4-6 years of “learning” in college you obtain very little, if any, real world experience. And you also come out with a nice big fat college loan to boot.
Then you hit the real world seeking employment, where you are hit with the fact that hiring managers mostly value experience and soft skills over any subjects you studied or GPA you achieved.
And then your are stuck with either settling on a job you don’t like or you now have to figure out how to get the skills and experience those employers are looking for.
Most students think that is the only choice they have and may not spend a lot of time pursuing others but there are many other ways to make a full time career online with less investment in time and money.
And this leads me to the second biggest misconception:
You do not need a degree in computer science to be an Internet Ninja
When it comes to the internet – the immediate reaction is that you need some mad technical skills to build websites or apps. But learning how to code is only one small way to have success online.
There are so many other choices like blogging, hosting a podcast, selling e-books, promoting other people’s products and many others that don’t require technical skills or years of study. With the right guidance you could have a full time career while your friends are in their sophomore year of college.
One option which is exploding right now is to create and sell online courses.
Which leads me to the third biggest misconception:
Am I too young to “teach”?
Your first reaction is probably to doubt your ability to do this because of your age. It’s natural to feel this way, but you have to understand that it has nothing to do with age. It’s all about perspective.
Let’s say you are 16 years old and spent your life fishing with your father. You know all about the sport and you love to do it every minute that you can.
Now someone like me comes along – I am 30+ years older than you and also come from a different part of the country where the fishing is just different or maybe I just am getting into it as a hobby. To me, you are a bass lovin’, fish catching guru that will help me catch more fish faster than I can figure out on my own. You will save me days if not weeks of searching online trying to put all of this together.
Your course could include modules on the equipment, different techniques to use in certain situations, behaviors of the different fish species, downloadable guides for tying knots I can have printed out to attach to my tackle box, etc. You get the idea – you could easily pack a ton of valuable content into a course without even thinking about it too much or breaking a sweat.
To you, this information seems trivial- but to me, it is super valuable. You have a nice “system” for me to follow and I will gladly pay you for it. It’s very similar to why diet systems like Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, etc have been so successful for the longest time.
Now of course all of this same exact information exists online for free – but I don’t care because I don’t want it coming from a variety of sources. I am buying your course because of you – not just the information that’s in it.
This is why the online course market is exploding right now and why you seriously need to consider it as an alternative to wasting time in college. Or at least consider it while you are in college so you can “diversify” your career path options.
Most people who start down the online course path, end up with multiple courses on a variety of subjects and are living the passive income lifestyle every entrepreneur dreams about.
And here is the fourth biggest misconception:
But isn’t this too difficult to do?
Let’s get something straight – nothing comes without effort. Creating online courses is not a get rich quick scheme.
If you have the right tools to use and the right strategy, anyone, including high school students can do this. So whether you have been in special clubs, have hobbies or are just a special person with a different perspective or creativity – you can build an online course.Thinkific makes it possible for anyone to create and sell online courses. #teachonline @degreefreelife Click To Tweet
How Thinkific makes creating online courses super easy
First of all, you get a ton of value in the free version of the Thinkific. And this is great news for anyone let alone students.
Second, it literally takes a only few minutes to sign up and get your own site where you can host your online courses and other web pages if you would like. Everything you need for a website to host and sell online courses is included.
Setting up the site could not be easier – you simply need to know how to click a mouse and type with a keyboard to get everything configured.
There is no code to learn or any IT techie, geeky stuff to figure out. There is no one else you need to hire and can be done fully on your own.
You basically just need to:
- Set up an outline of your course that describes each module and section
- Create and upload your content
- Upload some banner images and select theme colors to make your website shine
If you need to show some live videos, the phone you probably already own can record video in HD which is more than suitable.
If you would like to do a slide presentation, you can create your slides freely with Google Slides and then use Thinkific to record your voice over without any additional software or equipment.
Of if you want to keep you course super simple, which is perfectly acceptable, you can just have it purely text based.
So What Are You Waiting For?
There is really nothing from stopping you from doing this except yourself.
Don’t sabotage yourself and doubt that you are too young and can’t do this.
Don’t limit yourself with a belief that there is only one path for you to go down to have a successful career.
Don’t wait until you graduate college to just start realizing your future.
The opportunity is there right in front of you if you just take the first steps on your journey to becoming an online entrepreneur.Unsure about college? Here's how to become an online entrepreneur. #teachonline @degreefreelife Click To Tweet
Rob Galvin coaches teens to discover and start a degree free career by creating their own business as a digital entrepreneur. He has been featured in The Huffington Post and hosts a free virtual Digital Entrepreneur Career Fair with over 40 expert guests speakers. His mission is to help other parents like him realize there are excellent career and lifestyle options for their children that don’t require a college degree.
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