Today brings us to the final option I have listed in my original post - the option most likely to raise eyebrows and bring out statements like, "What a shame, I'd really like to see her do something with her life". I'd like to address that one for a moment.
I find it very disheartening that "the world" sees little value in a person unless they have a piece of paper behind them. Why can't a person without a degree make something of their lives? Are they somehow less of a person? I'd like to think not. I'd hate to think that my worth in life is all because I have a college degree.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm all for a good education. I'm all for learning how to stretch your wings and live on your own. But at what price? I have to wonder if you're really getting what you pay for. Obviously someone who needs the degree (like a doctor or nurse or engineer) has no other option. But isn't it worth looking into other options for people who don't need the degree? Would the student who could get a job in a field that interested them and work at it for four years not possibly come out ahead? It is an interesting thing to ponder. Of course there is no way to know for certain as there are many variables involved in this option. Still, I don't think it should be one that is discounted and frowned upon.
I know that there are other possibilities and options out there, but the ones I have listed are the main ones we are considering at this time. It has been helpful to me to put them all in one place to look back on and pray about. We have essentially turned it all over to God. Only He knows what is best for our daughter and somehow He will let us know which direction to choose. In the meantime, we'll do our part - investigating our options and praying about them - and hang on for the ride.