Education is important for everyone.  It gives you power.  As Nelson Mandela aptly puts it – “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

We’ve said that a good education is the surest way to a successful career. It’s true that, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2012 the average full time worker with only a high school diploma earned $33,904 per year while graduates with Bachelor’s degrees averaged $55,432 annually.  And certainly if you intend to become a physician or an attorney, you need the credentials of higher education.

The word “education” has a vast meaning.  Over time, the  majority perceives education the traditional way.  Being confined in the walls of your university, referring to books for more knowledge, having teachers introduce to us various scientific and mathematical concepts and getting good marks.

However, education is also about discovering new things. It is knowledge acquired not just through books, but also through the people, places and things around you.  Take the case of a one or two year old child.  As they grow, we let them explore things around them through free play.  They do not have the formal education to make them understand the concept of shapes but when you let them play shape sorters, you are slowly making them aware of the very basic concepts of shapes.

Many of the most successful people through history, from Abraham Lincoln to Andrew Carnegie, barely completed high school. And besides the 14 year old CEO’s that are making their mark without college degrees today.  We’ve got billionaires like: Steve Jobs, co – founder of Apple (dropped out of college); Hyman Golden, co-founder of Snapple (dropped out of high school); David Geffen, founder of Geffen Records and co-founder of DreamWorks (dropped out of college after completing one year); Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay Inc. (did not attend college); Rachael Ray, Food Network cooking show star and food industry entrepreneur (no formal culinary arts training and never attended college); Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Records, Virgin Atlantic Airways, Virgin Mobile, and more (dropped out of high school at 16).

I’m not saying that a college education is bad. I’m just saying that as a road to becoming successful, especially to becoming a successful entrepreneur, a college degree is not the golden fleece it’s cracked up to be.  Your passion, attitude and outlook in life is a huge factor in your quest for success.  Apart from your college education, what drives you what motivates you is the duplicate key to open the door of success for you.