Do We Need Education to be Successful?

Do we need education to be successful? This is a question often asked in group discussions, forums, or plain conversations among people. It is my personal stand that we do need education to achieve our goals and eventually become successful.

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Here are 3 reasons why I think so.

Education Provides the Foundation

A long time ago, one successful man gave my father an unsolicited advise. He said, “Do everything to send your children to good schools especially during the formative years because that will give them the foundation they would need to succeed.” His explanation was that excellent communication skills developed early on is a distinct advantage in the competitive employment and business world. I have observed that it is a fact that children who had excellent communication skills are more confident and usually more aggressive in utilizing opportunities. My father  who was the epitome of “Batang Quiapo”, loosely translated to streetwise child, did everything he could to send us all to private schools. The decision was not borne out of some snobbish attitude towards public schools. It was quite unfortunate that public schools had lost its glory by our time in terms of providing quality education, with very few exceptions. It is to be noted as well that it was fairly difficult to be admitted to these exceptions.

Education Provides the Artillery

Life is like a constant battle wherein we would need the artillery to fight and win. In almost all aspects of living, we are called upon to prove our capabilities, abilities, knowledge, and skills. Education provides the things we need to come out competitive.

Education is Forever Ours

My father always said to me that what I obtain from my education is forever mine and that no one can take it away from me. Some people can steal your bright ideas but they cannot prevent you from producing a brighter one. Circumstances can drive us to the lowest depths of economic standing but we still have our education to use for our recovery.

So what kind of education are we talking about here?

Academic Education

This is the kind of education we get from schools and other learning institutions. The need to know the basics of reading, writing, thinking, and speaking cannot be overemphasized. Whether we like or not, we need to advance on these areas as we grow older to ensure that we remain competitive.

Practical Education

This is the kind of education we get from experience or from actually doing  a particular skill to gain expertise. There are some jobs where the weight of experience is more than the weight given to academic degrees. Still, a certain degree of academic learning would usually be required by companies such as being at least a high school graduate.

So what kind of education do we need to attain success?

The Traditional Formula

The age-old formula was to finish college, find work, and then live comfortably ever after. Unfortunately that is easier said than done. Today, it is not only enough that you finish formal schooling but you need to stand out from the rest. What will make one stand out is highly debatable. It can be the school from which you graduated. It can be the academic honors you received. It can be one exceptional ability. Sometimes, it can even be your looks, specifically in certain industries. Still, academic foundation is a constant advantage.

The Exceptions

Truly there are always exceptions to the general rule. We can name several successful people who prevailed against all odds. Some may not have even finished college or be just one of the so many average graduates and yet they are considered successful in the standards of society. The lucky ones automatically take over a family business empire with some making the most out of it by studying and working hard as well. Others discover exceptional talents for a very in-demand job. Still, many others quietly persevere to gain more knowledge and skills through studying.

My Say

There is something that always gets through my skin no matter what and that is seeing young people taking for granted the privileges they enjoy in education. Not every one gets the chance to study in a good school or even go to school period. Access to education is something that must be appreciated.

So do we need education to be successful? Yes, I strongly believe so. And so you may ask, am I successful? I would probably say yes, successful in the context of using what I learned to live life and to earn a living. People though define success in different ways.

My father was right when he said to me “I will leave you nothing but your education” because material things vanished quickly when he became terminally ill. The education which my parents worked hard for stayed with me. It is like a chest where I draw strength from every now and then. Given the chance, I would probably enroll in a second course, take a master’s degree, learn a foreign language or even learn a new manual skill or hobby. Age is never a deterrent to education  but the lack of willingness usually is. Education is my constant hunger, what’s yours?

23 Comment

  1. Yes we do! Through education we get to discover and hone some of our skills. My parents also used to say that education is the only inheritance they could give me and my siblings. We came from a very poor family but we were able to rise from poverty mostly due to the education we got and careers we managed to bag after.

  2. As what they say, education is the key to the future. Just like you ate Teresa, I also believe in the importance of education to anyone. That is why education is also the best gift any person could gift. It is precious.

  3. By all means it’s a must to all Filipinos wherein they have the total edge when it comes to learning and knowledge. It is a guide to reach the success of your choice, and why not study when it’s available and handy? Learning is a continuous processes of your likes, dislikes and anything in between until you die! Really, education is an edge to be used to attain success.

  4. agree with leira. though as I am living overseas for years already. I’ve seen and been friends to many ofw’s that is frankly most of them are high school grad and sometimes didn’t even finished their studies but still they fulfilled the many dreams of pinoy to work abroad to earn much high salary than in philippines. I didn’t finish my college but now living in malaysia with my family and happy.

    1. I’m happy for you and your ofw friends. Actually I have some ofw friends of my own who are quite successful as well and then decided to finish their studies when they went back here, which made them very happy and proud of their hard-earned accomplishment. The nice thing was they were not ashamed to go back to school even if it was obvious that they were “old” compared to their classmates. When I asked them why bother to study since they were already financially successful, most said they see education as an added investment while others simply wanted the fulfillment of finishing their studies now that they have the money to spend on it.

    1. Sometimes we think we don’t but if we look back at every decision we made in our lives, the good ones almost always had the benefit of learning through information. Education does not only happen in classrooms.

  5. Like your dad, my parents also instilled to us that their only inheritance they can give to us is education and of course the values along with it. It’s our passport to success, indeed.

    1. I think so too, together with our willingness and determination to do whatever else is needed to succeed but always being guided by what is right and wrong, education can take us to greater heights.

  6. I think education is important and could spell the difference between success and failure for most. Although I have seen a lot of famous personalities who have succeeded despite the lack of any degrees, I think that these people have their own unique abilities that made them a success. Education for me is still key and you are right must be taken advantage of specially if this is available to us.

    1. It really is a waste of valuable opportunities to take education for granted. I cannot emphasize it enough. Young people who are in the enviable circumstances of being able to study should seize the opportunity while it is there because it will not always be there.

  7. To be honest Success is relative, It means a lot of different things to everyone. For some Success means having money, having a career to some it means having a family.I agree that education will open some doors for you but there are some Success stories of people who made it even if they didn’t finish college.

    1. Yes, I agree with that and have acknowledged that fact in this post. However, I believe they are the exceptions rather than the rule so I think it would be much better for any one of us to take advantage of education especially if it is available to us. The very reason why most parents send their children to school is to give them a possible means to ensure a good future. Why take the chance of not studying when it can be done? So many unfortunate people are moving heaven and earth just to have access to good education.

      And if I may add, having a degree does not guarantee success, it just provides a means to pursue success.

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