Do you want to be a doctor, a lawyer, or a programmer? You have to answer this question now and live with the consequences for the rest of your life.
One thing that we fail to admit, is that an 18-year-old is too young. He can't to understand the consequences of this decision. Most students are courting student debts, when they are just coming out of middle school. We won't let a 14-year-old go out on her own, but we are OK with making her take massive decisions and putting herself into debt.
You can't blame the parents either. If your parents never went to college, why are they expected to understand the massive undertaking college is?
At some point we ask ourselves: Should we go to college? Now that I am over 30, I can say with confidence that I don't regret dropping out of college. I've avoided massive debt. Many of my colleagues regret their computer science degree. It's not the degree is not useful, it sure is, for someone who wants to work as an academic.
When we make the decision to go to college, we usually want to please our parents, or follow what the crowd is doing. But we rarely consider it as an investment. College is an investment and should be treated as such. You wouldn't put your money in a company going bankrupt, would you? Then you shouldn't invest in an education that doesn't have a clear return on your investment.