Skip to comments.Saying No to College
Posted on 12/02/2012 10:30:41 AM PST by MinorityRepublican
BENJAMIN GOERING does not look like Facebooks Mark Zuckerberg, talk like him or inspire the same controversy. But he does apparently think like him.
Two years ago, Mr. Goering was a sophomore at the University of Kansas, studying computer science and philosophy and feeling frustrated in crowded lecture halls where the professors did not even know his name.
I wanted to make Web experiences, said Mr. Goering, now 22, and create tools that make the lives of others better.
So in the spring of 2010, Mr. Goering took the same leap as Mr. Zuckerberg: he dropped out of college and moved to San Francisco to make his mark. He got a job as a software engineer at a social-software company, Livefyre, run by a college dropout, where the chief technology officer at the time and a lead engineer were also dropouts. None were sheepish about their lack of a diploma. Rather, they were proud of their real-life lessons on the job.
Education isnt a four-year program, Mr. Goering said. Its a mind-set.
The idea that a college diploma is an all-but-mandatory ticket to a successful career is showing fissures. Feeling squeezed by a sagging job market and mounting student debt, a groundswell of university-age heretics are pledging allegiance to new groups like UnCollege, dedicated to hacking higher education. Inspired by billionaire role models, and empowered by online college courses, they consider themselves a D.I.Y. vanguard, committed to changing the perception of dropping out from a personal failure to a sensible option, at least for a certain breed of risk-embracing maverick.
Risky? Perhaps. But it worked for the founders of Twitter, Tumblr and a little company known as Apple.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Not going to be the first in line to get heart surgery from a doctor who dropped out.
Some fields need people with advanced education. Some don’t.
As far as Libs/Dems are concerned, saying that college isn’t for everyone will soon become as offensive as saying “Merry Christmas.”
BTW—Merry Christmas fellow FReepers!
Im seeing a trend toward certification in lieu of college. Program Management, PMI, Quality, APICs, Air-Conditioning, etc. Pay the $400-500, take the test and add the certification to the resume. Some of these certifications are more important than a college degree. Of course, its a money scheme too. You have to have continuing education credits and pay money to belong to an organization. But, you get to put their logo on your resume.
I think were seeing the end of tradition college. Classes and certifications will be available on-line at a fraction of the cost of a brick and mortar school.
Yes, but a heart surgeon hardly needs to sit through 4 years of history or political science or gender studies at a university to learn to be a doctor. Most college courses are a joke and just a repeat of the crap kids are forced to endure in high school. There is absolutely no reason for education to take as many years as it does. The initial push for mandatory education came from unions that did not want young people out in the work force competing for jobs.
Our system of education is horrible, and the worst thing that ever happened to this country was when government basically took over education. We are still doing things the way they were done 150 years ago, although things are even worse, since everything is dumbed down now.
I'm still paying for this degree.
I hope you are right! Somehow we have to break free from the rotten government school system that offers poor education, lots of drugs to buy, bullying, stultifying boredom, and then a useless degree from a leftist dominated college.
If you want to get a job with a W-2 and a pretty good paycheck that allows you to become a recipient of the somewhat upper, middle-middle class and forever spin your wheels trying to make that former American Dream of the multiple cars, nice house, summer home, decent retirement, then by all means go to college and get a degree in a meaningful discipline.
If you want to really make it, find something you like to do, hopefully where you can start a business, and work hard. Cheat on your taxes until the taxman comes to your door and tell him “if you complain about the cash I make in this business and deal with, then quit printing the damned stuff.”
Buy a big safe ...keep the cash you make, and use it for your bills, etc. reduce your paper income to the point you qualify for Food Stamps, EBT, section 8, SNAP, SCHIP, EITC, et al. Obama’s voters do it.
Better would be an Engineering Degree, or Business
To learn how to Think Critically
these days the “professors” and highly paid administrators are a huge part of the problem.. When I went to school and law school, a semester was $750 plus books $300 and “professors” made about $40K These days, the “professors” are pigs at the trough making over $100K plus fat benefits, won’t do more than their 2 lectures a week and they make me want to puke.
Georgia Tech is now offering classes free online. Can’t get any cheaper than that.
Not to mention the myth of “the shortage of Highly skilled American Tech workers”. Why would corporations pay an American Engineer with top $$$$ when they can get an Indian or Chinese worker for cheap.
I encourage young people here to learn a trade at the local shipyard or some such, rather than go to college as some sort of default strategy to bide time while they “find themselves.”
Learn welding. Learn pipefitting. Become an electrician, a plumber. Learn small appliance repair. Become an auto mechanic. Learn to do something practical that people value so much that they will pay you to do it.
It would appear that the vaunted college degree is somewhat overrated. That's not to dismiss those who put in the years and worked hard and earned the piece of paper that has opened doors for them that may not otherwise have been options. But if some things can be done by people with no degree that required a degree at some point, then how much money is being wasted by both government agencies and private companies on people with a degree?
All juice, no pits
Just the ticket for a self starter
Once ObamaCare kicks in, most of the “care givers” in this country will be graduates of SEI University’s 3:15 p.m. Thursday afternoon graduating class. Good luck with that.
College offers little to nothing that can’t be self-taught, including doctrinaire Marxism.
Let’s starve the Beast. And save a bundle of dough on the process. I’m letting my kids decide, and pay their own way, should they choose college.
How many 18 year olds know they want to be doctors. My son is 18, and a freshman at Texas A&M.
He’s currently majoring in economics, but he’s thinking of changing to physics. He went to a great private school in California, but his science teachers just never inspired him. In college, he loves his astronomy course. He says that he would rather work out problems than just memorize facts.
My 30 year old nephew dropped out of college, and he’s struggled. He’s got a good job now working for Haliburtin, but it’s a very manual job. I can’t imagine him doing that in 20 years.
I also think you have to be smart about what you major in. My son did theater in high school, and he has lots of friends majoring in it. I think they will have a difficult time.
If you want to be a scientist, you cannot self-teach yourself.
Colleges have wonderful labs and equipment, and you have to learn how that equipment works.
Kurt Vonnegut once advised aspiring writers to avoid English or literature classes. He said the best education a writer could have would be in one of the practical fields (IIRC he studied engineering).
-— As far as Libs/Dems are concerned, saying that college isnt for everyone will soon become as offensive as saying Merry Christmas. -—
It’s still legal to sneer at the mention of college in our personal interactions. I do. It’s fun.
Why not enjoy it while it’s still legal?
For much less than the price of college, you can hire their best professors as private tutors/mentors.
Also, with larger classes you can sit in for free without enrolling, as long as they do not take attendance, which they usually do not.
There’s certainly a lot of certification in IT.
Schools waste a tremendous amount of time. What they do accomplish, and I think most education occurs in spite of schools rather than because of them, could be done in a few short years. Children should be allowed to move on when they have mastered a subject and not be marched lock-step with a group just because they are all the same age. That would also allow kids who take longer to master a subject to have more time to do so without being labeled failures.
Congrats on your son being an Aggie! I love College Station. It is one of the friendliest towns I have ever visited. One of our kids graduated from A&M and got his Ph.D. there. BTW, even that is not enough these days to land a good job, because there are so many foreigners who will work for peanuts. Caveat emptor.
Also, a kid who finishes high school at 16 probably ought to get some kind of job for a year or two and he will have a better idea of what direction he wants to take from there. Work is far more edifying than just about all the nonsense that is taught in schools.
All a college education is for most people, not all, is to show a future employer that you are willing to work with the system.
Almost everyone I know that was hired on after getting their diploma now is in another field entirely and was taught on the job. Advanced computer skills, common sense, punctuality and a good work ethic can get you a pretty good life if your smart about it.
Acting is one of those “Winners Take All” field, if a person wants to be an actor, fine, but most likely will struggle to make ends meet and have to wait tables to pay the bills until they become the next Matt Damon. Or not.
The health care industry is now a subsidiary of the US feral government.
You have no say in what number in line you are, but from here on out skin color is going to be the most important factor in who gets into medical school.
How do you feel about getting heart surgery from an affirmative-actioned MD?
Instead of saying no to college, what they should be doing is recreating the college curriculum, so that it reflects what students need and how they can get it.
As things are now, college is very overpriced and bogged down with useless information and time consuming distractions.
To make a successful college, *begin* with a career placement assumption within six months after graduation. If courses and majors cannot offer this, almost to the point of a guarantee, then dispense with them.
To a great extent this means “college as on the job training” for a select handful of corporations. Much like being an intern, students would actually be working for the company, while at the same time doing high intensity learning for promotions within those companies.
From the start this would mean doing established, non creative jobs while they create a portfolio of their *proprietary* creative work, to prevent exploitation by supervisors.
Then on graduation and retention, they officially show their creative work as “poor man’s patents”, for peer review, so they get all the credit for it if it flies, along with royalties if the company adopts it.
Bingo! And sadly, they don't teach those things in college. Actually, they teach just the opposite. IMHO.
Red lights and stop signs are for people that don’t know how to drive.
For the costs involved, college, for the most part, is a waste!
You didn’t read the whole article, did you?
IT is certainly one of those fields where a diploma is worth little more than to wipe your ass with. Certifications and experience is where the $$$$ is. (being in IT, I know this for a fact - and I HAVE a degree in 'IT')
What do you call the guy who graduated last in his class in med school?
Feel better about that credential?
MIT also has free videos of many classes. I believe it’s called opencourseware.
If there’s hope for conservatism going forward, this trend might be the biggest source of it. Breaking the stranglehold that academia has over the “best and brightest” is job one in restoring a constitutional republic.
—— If you want to be a scientist, you cannot self-teach yourself ——
Unless you’re Edison or Einstein. Or Bill Gates. Or Steve Jobs.
Or you could go to engineering school, like I did, and be of little scientific use to anyone, since I’m not interested in it.
My point is, you can become a scientist with or without formal training. But you can only get credentials at a college.
Dynamic corporations, or corporations in emerging markets are indifferent to credentials, as opposed to established corporations.
In school, the young Edison’s mind often wandered, and his teacher, the Reverend Engle, was overheard calling him “addled”. This ended Edison’s three months of official schooling. Edison recalled later, “My mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me; and I felt I had something to live for, someone I must not disappoint.” His mother taught him at home.  Much of his education came from reading R.G. Parker’s School of Natural Philosophy.
His father intended for him to pursue electrical engineering, but Einstein clashed with authorities and resented the school’s regimen and teaching method. He later wrote that the spirit of learning and creative thought were lost in strict rote learning.
Jobs dropped out of college after six months and spent the next 18 months dropping in on creative classes, including a course on calligraphy.  He continued auditing classes at Reed while sleeping on the floor in friends’ dorm rooms, returning Coke bottles for food money, and getting weekly free meals at the local Hare Krishna temple.  Jobs later said, “If I had never dropped in on that single calligraphy course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts.”
Gates did not have a definite study plan while a student at Harvard  and spent a lot of time using the school’s computers. Gates remained in contact with Paul Allen, and he joined him at Honeywell during the summer of 1974.  The following year saw the release of the MITS Altair 8800 based on the Intel 8080 CPU, and Gates and Allen saw this as the opportunity to start their own computer software company.  Gates dropped out of Harvard at this time.
Um... are you a science major? Have you actually seen what science students actually do at the undergraduate level in colleges today?
A degreed education provides three things:
- 10,000 hours practice in the subject (a la Malcom Gladwell’s famous observation)
- assurance of covering all the important topics (self-taught, however successful, often suffer gratuitous gaping holes in their understanding)
- certification by recognized experts that the student learned what he needs to (”BS in Subject from Accredited University” is a lot easier in a job interview than 30 hours of debriefing).
Quibble as you may over these, they’re really important.
Is that really the case?
One would think literature or humanities majors would know how to write well.
A lot of them don't -- and haven't had anywhere near 10,000 hours of experience in writing.
I don't think I got anywhere near that kind of experience or the confidence that goes with it.
The problem with the university, as well as all education in our country, is that it could be done so much better. Most of academia are people who have not done much more than go to school. This results in in-breeding. Students who teach students who teach students.....on and on. And sabbaticals wind up being time to write books or do a little consulting. The best professor I ever had was a lady who taught me advanced statistics. She was a VP of an insurance company. She taught for fun. No nonsense and real world driven.
I think that there is a difference between training and education. Training makes you a good performer. Education makes you a better thinker. It’s a subtle, but important difference. Not everyone needs a higher education. Most everyone needs some training. I loathe what our universities have become. But, I’m not ready to give up on education for most people. Training allows you to live. Education can give you a fuller life. I don’t really see much difference in grinding away in a lab versus grinding away on a car. More social status and pay, I suppose. Better life? I’m not so sure.
I think that we have a tremendous investment in our universities. I don’t know that throwing the professors out to weed the cabbage field would be good for us. It would be good for them, I think. The universities have no reason to change. Paleface Lizzy Warren made $350,000 for teaching one class during one school year at Harvard. That’s a pretty good gig. I think the way to get their attention, and force them to change the way they operate, is to withhold the next two graduating classes from high school out of the universities. Believe me, the administrators and professors will just laugh at this for one year. Two years scares the crap out of them. “What if America discovers they don’t need all of us? I can’t weed cabbages!” the professors are not the least bit altruistic. You hit them in the pocketbook, and they will listen.
Hi, I’m Heinrich Yamamoto.
Well, that’s at least the premise. Some manage not to. 2500 hours per year times 4 years is 10,000 hours. The opportunity is there; whether many squeak thru without taking proper advantage of it is a different issue.
Another is that there is no "Truth in Education" that requires colleges to tell applicants, "So, how much does that $200,000 BA in Primitive Cultures actually earn you ten years after graduation?" like the EPA gas mileage stickers required of a $20,000 Hyundai.
A college degree is "worth it" for many, but an overpriced BA from a third-tier college in a lightweight subject isn't "worth it" for someone who's going to end up as a Starbucks barista.