On the news recently, it was reported that many college students are coming out without earning their degrees, yet they are $$$$ in debt from student loans. So, college is not for everyone. As the previous post notes there are many profitable occupations in the trades--by the way, immigrants are now going for these jobs because American youth think they should go to 4 year colleges.
Taking the aptitude tests that the Armed Services offers juniors in high school is not a bad idea, for then one knows what one might be good at as occupations are suggested based upon performances on this battery of tests.
What is important about college is that one becomes educated and learns how to learn and how to think. These skills are invaluable and will serve one well in his/her personal life. Indeed, one's life is more rewarding as new avenues of thinking are opened. Being able to appreciate the fine arts and other finer things in life makes one's life so much better. One thing about a degree is that it always supplies one with a profession; so, it is great for those of us with little or no mechanical or artistic skills.
However, in this day and time, students should choose a profession that is marketable. For instance, there is a plethora of lawyers right now. Journalism may not be too marketable, either, as newspapers are cutting back on their publications because of the proliferation of news from other sources. Looking at the want-ads in city newspapers will indicate what is in demand.
The most important consideration is for students to be realistic about their desires and their abilities. Then, they can choose wisely their direction in life.