Having completed high school or a 2-year vocational course is traditionally seen as a poor second-option, a fall-back position in case finances cannot meet course fees as well as the costs to complete the course, traditionally called cost of studies.

While that view is changing (given the mismatch of graduates and jobs available both here and abroad), college education remains an odds-on favorite to get a good paying job and a better future. – preferably abroad.

But how much does a college education cost?  And how do parents, those who financed the education journey and most of all, the graduate, get the return on their investment in the fastest way possible?

Life Insurance Philippines provides the numbers:

For example, a parent who intends to enroll a child at the De La Salle University (DLSU) for a four-year course would have to take into consideration the tuition and fee hike annually imposed or granted by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED. If we assume that the rate hike is around 10% per year, this is what we’ll get:

Age

Year

Projected Tuition & Fees

0

2011

P188,881.00

1

2012

P207,769.10

2

2013

P228,546.01

3

2014

P251,400.61

4

2015

P276,540.67

5

2016

P304,194.74

6

2017

P334,614.21

7

2018

P368,075.63

8

2019

P404,883.20

9

2020

P445,371.52

10

2021

P489,908.67

11

2022

P538,899.54

12

2023

P592,789.49

13

2024

P652,068.44

14

2025

P717,275.28

15

2026

P789,002.81

16

2027

P867,903.09

17

2028

P954,693.40

18

2029

P1,050,162.74

19

2030

P1,155,179.02

20

2031

P1,270,696.92

21

2032

P1,397,766.61

22

2033

P1,537,543.27

So, for a 4-year course starting in 2027 when your child becomes 16 years of age, you will spend a total of P4,027,938.25 for tuition and fees in college alone.

Cost Recovery: Salary is gross!

To recoup investment on education, a graduate has to have source of income (employment, self-employment, business) using the academic foundation, training, skills set obtained during the academic years.

According to www.worldsalaries.org, the average monthly salary of a Filipino professional (one who has completed a bachelor’s degree) ranges from 10,000 to 15,000 including registered nurses, teachers and engineers.  Computer programmers get slightly higher monthly income.  Pilots get the highest salary and not because of the altitude.  Call center agents or customer sales representative of business process outsourcing get higher entry level salaries: anywhere from 20 to 25,000 with sign in bonus spread out over a certain period.  And the salary cited here is gross: not eeew!-gross but salary before taxes or deductions.

Certain Schools Get Edge on Job Opportunities

Since the Philippine education system is patterned after that of the United States, college graduates with or without experience who seek temporary work or permanent migration to countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada or the United Kingdom must complete certain courses or programmes to meet the country standards. 

In Singapore, graduates of certain schools need not have their credentials evaluated. In fact,  official transcript of records and diploma are usually the ticket to good job offers, especially in the hotel and restaurant sector.

Graduates of the following universities are top choices for Singapore employers in the hospitality and restaurant industry: UP Diliman; UP Manila;  Dela Salle Manila; St. Benilde Manila, Ateneo de Manila Loyola; UST, Mapua and Asian Institute of Management.

For graduates of these schools, recovering the cost of education is faster.  And after completing certain years of employment, these graduates become eligible for permanent residency not just in Singapore but also in Canada, New Zealand, Australia and the United Kingdom countries that have points-based migration.

For more information on how graduates of these schools may match their diploma with Singapore’s restaurant and hospitality companies, call (02) 634-8717.

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