Discovering Your Path - National Higher Education DayJune 5, 20182 min read
Observed annually on June 6, National Higher Education Day was established to guide and excite future college students. Designed to guide as well as inspire, the national day and corresponding year-long program aim to fully equip every United States student both scholastically and financially for a higher education.
National Higher Education Day’s founder, Izamar Olaguez, had the desire to promote the many different ways students can fund their education. Izamar's life experiences have motivated her to advocate for the accessibility of higher education. She says “the national day began with the hope to inspire students of all ages to never give up on their dream of receiving a higher education degree!”
Southern Utah University President Scott L Wyatt believes that a post-secondary experience equips students to navigate their way in life. Students gain confidence, discipline, motivation and communication skills, which leads to positivity, less stress and greater self-fulfillment.
“College prepares you to think critically, learn to communicate, work with people from different backgrounds and makes you a more productive member of society,” said Wyatt. “I believe education is the best path to achieving your potential and discovering your purpose. There are a million reasons why you should go to college, but bottom line; you will earn more money, live longer, and be a happier, healthier person.”
Comparing a high school graduate to a college graduate, President Wyatt notes that it takes just seven years for a college graduate to have a positive return on investment.
“That's not very long,” said Wyatt. “We work for a long, long time. If you go to a very expensive private school and, depending on your major and depending on where you choose to go work, it will take longer to get that return investment. However, remember the average income is a million dollars more over a lifetime. Even if you have to borrow $50,000 or $100,000, you are going to make that back.”
President Wyatt is a leader in higher education specializing in creating transformative learning experiences and achieving high-quality outcomes. As the 16th president of SUU, he has led the university in student enrollment growth, launched the University of the Parks initiative, opened a new veterans center, started a center for diversity and inclusion, and overseen the construction or acquisition of more than $60 million worth of capital improvement projects.