Yet with new statistics showing the average student leaves with debts of £53,000, is getting that all-important place really a cause for celebration?
After all, it’s an absolutely terrifying amount of cash… nearly twice the average annual income (assuming you can get a job after graduating) and one that will basically take YEARS to pay off. Imagine seeing that balance of debt every time you go to the cashpoint…
Despite promises by the government that it won’t have to be paid back until you’re earning £21,000 - and whatever’s left after 30 years will wiped clean - it’s a terrifyingly hefty burden to lug into the real world.
Forget getting on the property ladder after graduating. Even contemplating buying that bottle of wine, new shoes or hair cut will be a trauma if you know you’ve got that much debt hanging round your neck.
So is it even worth going to University? Or is it better just to skip it and go straight into the job market?
Obviously there are positives to further education. You meet friends for life, get to move away from home and get your first proper taste of independence. For some people, University is a crucial stepping stone on the way to being a real grown-up, a sort of halfway house between Mum and Dad and the big wide world.
But would YOU pay £53,000 for the privilege? It’s not even as if University guarantees you the job of your dreams. Recent figures revealed one fifth of new graduates are now unemployed, and of those that have found work, many are in low-skilled jobs.
With the recession bigger and scarier than ever, with no end in sight, it might be time to question whether a degree and three years of partying is the best ammunition to get a foot on the career ladder.
And with university applications down 8.7%, it seems many of you out there are starting to agree…
By Jess Commons