NEW YORK (MainStreet) —Sarah Hanson, 19, has offered 10% of her income for the next 10 years to the highest bidder, an anonymous investor in the San Francisco area who wagered $125,000. Hanson, who dropped out of college this year as a freshman, plans to use the money to pay down her student debt and advance Senior Living Map, a website she started to help seniors find assisted living facilities. We spoke with Hanson today to delve deeperinto her motivations:
Do you view college as having a poor ROI? If so, is your view informed by all massive student loan debt in the country?
Hanson: That depends. I think for certain people it's a necessity. For example, I wouldn't want a doctor who taught himself how to be a doctor but if it comes to a designer or programmer then it doesn't really matter how they learned their skills, whether that be through a formal college program or through their own efforts. All that matters is the work they can produce.
I'm lucky in that I know what I want to do. I don't think most do, and they spend four years taking on debt trying to figure that out and still don't know when they graduate. My older sister has friends who have a college degree and no idea what they want to do with their lives. They're nannies and work in coffee shops and have a ton of debt from college.
I have no idea how you get people to discover at a younger age what they want to do, but if that was possible, people could make better decisions on what path to follow to get to where they want to go. For some, that would probably mean college--others it wouldn't.
Do you think people your age see the Zuckerbergs out there and acquire a hankering for Silicon Valley glory, in lieu of an unnecessary liberal arts education?