Shahab Khan, Opinions Columnist

The American ethos is defined by one phrase: It’s all about the Benjamins.

From a young age, we are taught that it is the American Dream to earn the most money we can to afford the luxuries and necessities we need to sustain our lifestyle.

College is the place where American students go to develop the skills necessary to obtain a career and pursue the American dream. Therefore, it should also be mentioned that most students should finish their college education within the standard four-year timeframe rather than extend their stay.

While it may sound appealing to take your time finishing your college coursework, it is best for most students to graduate on time so that they can start to earn income as soon as possible.

This is because there is an opportunity cost with going to college. Once students graduate high school, they can go out in the workforce or go to college and potentially earn higher incomes in the future.  In other words, when people decide to attend college, they are forgoing the opportunity to make money in the workforce.

In four years, most people will have learned the skills they need to compete for jobs. Staying an extra year will not change potential earnings for college graduates.

Hence, most Americans should consider graduating within four years because they will have the potential to earn more money for a longer period compared to someone who stays in college for more than four years.

Columns reflect the opinions of the authors and are not necessarily those of the Editorial Board, The Daily Iowan, or other organizations in which the author may be involved.