Last week, First Lady Michelle Obama gave a speech as part of the #62MillionGirls Initiative. She talked about how critical education is for women. This is absolutely true. In much of the world, girls are denied education or are limited in their education by law and culture.

She's speaking about a worldwide problem in front of an audience that also has problems with education, but not because of their gender. In fact, in the United States, boys are less likely than girls to finish high school, go to college, and even get doctoral degrees. She warned girls not to spend too much time worrying about boys. This is sound counsel for the junior high school crowd, but terrible advice for the college age group. When you're 12 or even 16, you can easily make your life much harder than it needs to be by focusing your efforts on the opposite sex.

But, when you're in college, dating should be a priority if you want a successful career. I realize that seems utterly ridiculous and antithetical to the pursuit of a career. However, a Harvard study found that it's not the kids that put women behind in their careers, it's that they put their husband's career first.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with this. If a woman wants her career to take a secondary role to her husband's career, that's awesome. If a man wants his career to take a secondary role to his wife's career, that's awesome as well. I know lots of people in both situations. The problem comes when there is a disconnect. If she wants her career to be the priority career and he wants his career to be the priority career, that's going to be a problem. If they both want an equal priority, they are going to have to figure out which sacrifices each will need to make.

This is where dating comes in. When you tell young women and young men that they should focus on careers rather than relationships during college and early careers, they see no reason to carefully vet who they date. When you have relationships just for fun without looking at "is this a person I could someday marry?" it's too easy to make big mistakes. The end result can be that you don't discuss clear goals because you aren't ready to get married anyway. Unfortunately, you can fall in love with someone who has expectations that don't match your own. Love makes people do crazy things like assuming it will all work out later.

Instead, young adults should always think about the type of person they want to marry and should not continue to develop romantic relationships with people that won't support their future plans. Continuing to date someone whose goals don't match yours won't make your life more fun. It just increases the chance of marrying someone who won't ultimately make you

So girls, pay attention to those boys, to help you determine the type of person you want to marry. Otherwise, your career may not go in the direction you want it to.