For years, North American students have been told that the key to success in life is to go to college, and earn a degree. But that may no longer be the case. In fact, some educators now believe today’s high school students would be better served avoiding college altogether.

Richard Vedder is an economist at Ohio University. He points out that of the 30 jobs projected to grow the fastest in the next decade, only seven require a bachelor’s degree! So, his thinking is that pushing students into college would be like grooming them to become surgeons, when the world really needs more nurses, home health aides, and pharmacists, and the reality is that most of the training needed for those jobs can be done outside of college.

So, what’s the alternative? One popular option is intensive, short-term on-the-job training. For example: The CVS pharmacy chain recently began a program where aspiring pharmacists could work as apprentices in their stores. And statistics have shown that many of those apprentices have gone on to study to become pharmacists themselves.

Also know this: In a new survey of 2,000 employers, many said they valued workers who have experience in the workplace, and who can communicate and behave around other workers, ahead of workers who have a college degree.