By Michael B. Horn and Bob Moesta
Over the last several years, we collected and analyzed more than 200 personal stories and surveys of more than 1,000 students who chose different paths for higher education to understand what was causing them to enroll.
We discovered there are five primary reasons why people attend college:
- To Get Into Their Best School
- To Do What’s Expected of Them
- To Get Away
- To Step It Up
- To Extend Themselves
Although that sounds simple, each reason contains forces pushing and pulling people that range from functional considerations—for example, if I get another degree, I’ll receive a raise that justifies the cost—to emotional and social considerations.