Friday, March 11, 2011

Should Kids Go To College Anymore??

Despite the above picture most of those attending college and funnelling well over $100M into the coffers of our wonderful public and private higher education system do NOT get to hobnob with drunken ex-presidential candidates like those to the right.

So just what good IS a degree from a liberal arts college these days?

Not much if you take my experience and the experiences of those I was closest with in college.

I spent 5 1/2 years in college to graduate with a BA in English and a minor in Business Administration.  To be honest I can't remember a single business class that I took besides Marketing 101 in which I put together a videotaped advertisement for golf clubs--more of an excuse to get out to the golf course than to do any actual work!

What have I done since college?  Worked in finance of one sort or another.  Likely the LAST field of business I would have expressed interest in during college.

Then my buddies.  One graduated with a business degree--he is managing a True Green Chem Lawn franchise, another a fellow English major--he's a mail carrier, another with a degree in Sociology--he is a video game store regional manager.  Sensing a theme?

I did have one close friend who came out of school with degree in Communications and has put that to excellent use now working as a lead PR agent for a big firm in Boston.  So one out of five of us actually use what we went to school for.

Perhaps we five are more "worldly" for our college experiences and more "well rounded".  Maybe we can string together coherent thoughts better than non-college graduates.  Maybe.

I am more and more of the mind that if you don't go to school to learn a particular skill needed in the world that you may be better off starting at a lower level right out of high school and working your way up.  Certainly you won't be saddled with the debt that comes from college these days and you would learn your chosen business from the ground up.  I wouldn't be where I am today without college.  But I can't honestly say that I'd be worse off without it--just a different path to a different place.  But not necessarily worse.

Which is part of the focus of the article below that came up on CNBC today.  It makes a lot of good points.  If someone WANTS to go to college these days I say good, go ahead and do it.  Just don't think that you HAVE to go to college anymore.

Death of the Liberal Arts College Degree...

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