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Can Education and Money Guarantee a Secure Future?

Can Education and Money Guarantee a Secure Future?

Many think that those who are well-educated and rich have a secure future. They believe that a university education can help a person become a better worker, a better family member, and a better citizen. They may also feel that a good education will lead to a better-paying job and that those who make a lot of money will be happy.


Consider the comments made by Zhang Chen, who is from China. He says, “I believed that I needed a university degree to get out of poverty and that a high-paying job would guarantee a happy and satisfying life.”

To improve their chances of gaining a secure future, many are eager to attend famous universities, perhaps in other countries. This trend had increased noticeably until COVID-19 restricted international travel. A 2012 report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development says: “Asians account for 52% of all students studying abroad.”

Parents often make great sacrifices so that their children can attend university overseas. Qixiang, from Taiwan, recalls: “My parents were not well-off, but they sent all four of us children to college in the United States.” To pay for such education, his family, like many others, had to go deep into debt.


Many who pursued advanced education and wealth are left frustrated

Education can improve life in some ways, but it does not always bring the results that students expect. For example, after years of sacrifice and incurring significant debt, many cannot find the job they wanted. A report by Rachel Mui in Singapore’s Business Times says: “Graduate unemployment appears to be a growing issue.” Jianjie, a doctorate holder who lives in Taiwan, says, “Many have no choice but to accept a job that has nothing to do with their degree.”

Those who can obtain a job in their chosen profession may still find that their life has not turned out as they had hoped. After returning from university in the United Kingdom, Niran, who is from Thailand, found a job in his field. “As I expected, the degree helped me to get a job with a higher salary. However, the higher salary demanded more work and more time from me. Eventually, the company laid off most of its employees, including me. I realized that there is no security in any job.”

Even those who are rich or have achieved the so-called good life still face family problems, health tragedies, and economic uncertainty. Katsutoshi, from Japan, admits, “I enjoyed many material things, but I was frustrated by competition, jealousy, and bullying.” Lam, a woman who lives in Vietnam, says, “I see many people strive for a well-paying job to obtain financial security, but in reality, it has the opposite effect​—insecurity, health disorders, emotional exhaustion, and depression.”

Like Franklin, many have concluded that there is more to life than pursuing higher education and riches. Rather than focus their life on material things, some seek a better future by striving to be a good person and to do good to others. Will pursuing such a way of life guarantee a secure future? The next article offers the answer.