Greetings! I'm an 18 year old student currently enrolled in a Texas University and I wanted to ask the Web Developer community as a whole a couple of questions as an aspiring web developer. You see my dilemma is that I've come to the conclusion that college isn't for me. It's not that I don't think I could do well, (I've always done quite well academically) it's rather that I don't believe it is completely necessary in my goal of becoming a freelance web developer. I hated high school pretty much all the way through, and though I did very well, the public education system has never been very appealing to me. I've always been quite adept with teaching myself new things (for instance piano) and I'm quite disciplined and motivated to do well for myself. My goal right now is to teach myself the tools for web development (HTML, CSS, PHP, Java), build a solid portfolio and begin freelance work. I have no prior experience in this field besides a bit of website maintenance in college (EXTREMELY elementary things, not even applicable in real web development except perhaps in site organization). I have plenty of time to learn with no real responsibilities as I'm still practically a kid fresh out of High School.

As well as having an interest in the field I also find myself attracted to the fact that it is possible to do this work anywhere in the world, and I have an intense desire to travel extensively (in fact I plan to live out of an RV or camper as soon as I save enough money to afford one). From what I've gathered from other sources, it would be possible for me to attain the skills necessary to venture into this field within 2 years, keep in mind I would be avidly pursuing this and I learn new things rather quickly. I've talked my desires over with many of my close family members and they believe me capable of attaining anything I set my mind to, and I've received my parents blessing. My Uncle though (who I currently reside with in Texas) is a little bit opposed the idea of me forsaking a college degree and pursuing this (as I would be forsaking a scholarship as well). He strongly recommended me think long and hard about this, though he assures me the decision is mine and whatever I decide he will support me.

So I guess the main thing I'm asking is whether or not you as individual users believe that becoming a self taught web developer is a plausible path. From what I have read from other sources I believe it would be so but I would like to hear more opinions. Also how long do you think a rather intelligent person would take to learn the necessary skills to begin freelance work? What was your personal path into the field? Any tips, experiences, opinions, etc would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!