It has become common knowledge that college is absolutely necessary if you want to achieve the middle class lifestyle that your parents could obtain simply by finding good steady work. Presidents, politicians, activist, teachers, parents, and of course, school college advisers (they aren't counselors any more) tell you that it is absolutely vital. However, what they don't tell you, and frankly many do not know or are unwilling to see, is that there are many degrees out there that will do you no good whatsoever.
Moreover, the costs of school have become so great that in many instances you could never hope to repay your loans in anything that would resemble a timely matter; much less a time frame that would make such an expenditure a sound investment. The savvy among the college bound decide to go for degrees that have real demand and/or practical skills that can be taught. The savviest take extra summer classes and overload during the school year in hopes to blow through the program and minimize their debt load. Sounds like a great idea, however, universities might have something different to say about that.
You see universities are not beacons of education, or cities upon the hill, or a melting pot of new ideas. They are a business, do not think otherwise. They exist to part you from your money in exchange for a piece of paper. Now they will tell you that this piece of paper has value, and in the past it did. But more many reasons, the value it once had has been all but erased. Moreover, the university try to squeeze every last dime out of you that it can. And that extends to punishing those that try to graduate early. Nothing illustrates the craven nature of the university system today than a when a university sues a student who had the intelligence, and the ability, to get through his program early. In the past this student would have been given a pat on the back, but not in today's climate.