Would You Skip College to Pursue Your Dream?

Arizona BlacksmithWould you skip college to pursue your dream? That is what two college age students in Arizona are doing. A few weeks ago, I met this young married couple at a Tourist destination called Rawhide, near Phoenix Arizona. They rent a small, but very awesome building at this old west town and have converted it to a Blacksmith shop. In this space they do blacksmithing and leather work. He does the iron work and she does the leather work. When I saw them, they were very busy with a waiting line of customers placing their orders for leather bracelets, belts and dog collars or metal roses, horseshoes and branding irons. You can see some of their handiwork at their site on Etsy.com.

Their story is very cool. The young man learned to do blacksmith work on his family’s ranch in Arizona. His dream was to use these skills to create an income. He brought the forge, the anvil (awesome!) and many of the original tools to his new workshop. He learned to create functional as well as artsy things that customers would buy in a tourist setting. One very cool item he creates is a branding iron with the customer’s brand or initial of their last name. These can be used to brand steaks on the grill or anything else, I suppose. He also makes beautiful roses using barbed wire for the stem and then shaping metal leaves and petals. These are top sellers. While I was visiting the shop, I saw him sell the two he had on display and take orders for at least 3 more. With just those orders, he made over two hundred dollars in three hours in addition to all of the other items they sold that were on display!Arizona Blacksmith 2

While I don’t know his wife’s story as much, she creates beautiful and functional leather work. The hot sellers that I witnessed were personalized leather bracelets. She sold three of them to me and many to the rest of the customers in the shop.

While it is clear that they love what they do, they also pointed out to me that it is a lot of hard work. Still they seemed proud of what they had accomplished and as customers, we were very impressed.

Do you have a dream that you could put to work even before attending college? Here are some reasons why you might want to do something like this young couple:

College Debt is NOT an Option! This is radical thinking, but it is getting more common. Today, 71% of college students have debt, and the average debt is $30,000. To many people that is no longer acceptable. What about you?

What Should I Study? Chasing a dream will help you clarify the thing that you want to do with your future. I know many people who get stuck on a college degree path and simply finish because they don’t know what else to do. They go through self discovery along the way and are sometimes disappointed in their degree choice. Taking action on a dream can give you confidence and clarity.

Speed of Implementation. If you want to succeed at your dream, sometimes you just need to start. Waiting too long often kills opportunity.

Take the Road Less Traveled. You need to make this choice. Many people look down on the choice to postpone college. However, today there are a lot of people taking creative paths with their lives. Following the common path of four year college, college debt and then years of repayment may not be the best, even if everyone is doing it. Sometimes there are other options rather than pursuing a traditional four year degree.

So, would you skip college to pursue your dream? Do you know someone who has? Perhaps you should give it some thought. It’s not right for everyone, but the idea is growing. Tell me what you think. I would love to hear from you! Thanks for being a reader!

About The Author

Duane Rockensock

Duane (Rocky) Rockensock is a husband, a dad, and the National Reconditioning Manager for AmeriGas Propane. Since he was a teenager, Duane has loved hearing the stories of how people have started creative businesses or found ways to use their talents to accomplish amazing things. For that reason he started this blog to encourage teens and adults to find their purpose and to provide the tools and resources to make that happen!

  • Abigail H.

    So inspiring, Rocky! Your site is looking great.

  • Rocky

    Thanks Abigail! You made my day! Their story is great and I loved sharing it here. Not sure if they wanted me to go this direction with the story, but it really seemed to fit. They are a young couple doing what they love and they decided to postpone college for now. We need more people that are proud to do something like this! Thanks for reading!!