David Leonhardt says the latest data demonstrate that a four-year college degree is worth the investment. In fact, it pays so well that it actually rewards those who get the degree. College graduates with a four-year degree definitely make more money than those who didn’t finish college or those with only a high school diploma.

He concludes that everyone should get a four-year degree.

“Not so many decades ago, high school was considered the frontier of education. Some people even argued that it was a waste to encourage Americans from humble backgrounds to spend four years of life attending high school. Today, obviously, the notion that everyone should attend 13 years of school is indisputable.

“But there is nothing magical about 13 years of education. As the economy becomes more technologically complex, the amount of education that people need will rise. At some point, 15 years or 17 years of education will make more sense as a universal goal.

“That point, in fact, has already arrived.”

Now, it is hard to argue against college for all. I personally believe that anyone who wants to go to college should do so. I also believe that every state should have free public universities so students can enroll and leave with no debt.

But what puzzles me is this: first, if everyone has a four-year degree, will there still be a big wage premium for everyone? Second, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that most of the new jobs in the next decade won’t require a college degree. These will be jobs like “personal care aides,” home health aides, construction workers, retail salespersons. Will college graduates fill those jobs?

just wondering.