College vs Education
These days, it seems like you go to college to get a job, not an education.
I read all these newspaper stories about recent college grads unable to find a job, and the details indicate that they majored in something difficult to market. “Higher Education” institutions will happily take your money and teach you things about political science or classic poetry or whatever the heck “Liberal Arts” is … but the prospective job pool for someone with those degrees is rapidly shrinking into something more resembling a puddle.
You almost have to decide what kind of job you want, and work backwards to find out what major would get you there.
University is expensive.
If you have an interest in anthropology or creative writing but you plan on being a programmer, you’re not really encouraged to take those classes. Sure, you get a few electives to play with, but nothing that would really let you sink your teeth into the information. Even aside from that, courses depend so heavily on exams and grades that you spend more time worried about memorizing facts than drinking in new information.
You need a diploma to get certain kinds of jobs, and it’s really not worth while for you to rack up more debt by staying to learn more things.
The result of this mentality is a rushed, incomplete education.
I’ve taken nighttime college courses since graduating in an attempt to increase my knowledge on certain subjects and it was even worse than I’d remembered. Rush, rush, rush, and it’s okay if you don’t understand it so long as you finish it in time to get a good grade.
Technically, I have a certification in Linux administration for a LAMP server setup, but I still only know the most basic Linux commands.
Before you think I’ve gone all doom and gloom on you, I’d like to point out that I have gotten a pretty impressive education on a number of topics within my fields of interest, all without paying the exorbitant prices for a college course.
I’ve learned about square foot gardening and taking care of apple trees and dog training and horse training and novel writing and cooking and exercise and organization and home renovation and calligraphy — so many varied and different topics.
My teacher was the internet and the library.
We live in the future, folks. A future where teachers can write down their lessons and publish them in a book or on a website. A future where anyone with access can reach this information and learn from it, with very small barriers to entry.
Yes, I have paid for some of these “classes”, but never even close to the kind of money I’d pay for a college course, and always with much richer benefits than if I had a time limit and a set of exams I needed to pass to “prove” that I’d learned something.
We live in a world where it’s easier and more accessible to learn something outside of a classroom. All you have to do is be curious enough to find a book or do a search for the information.
I still went to college and got that expensive diploma. I love my job and it was worth the student loans to be able to secure it.
What do you think? Do you agree or disagree?