Thursday, April 24, 2014

College: What does four years really get you?

The topic of school came up today, and I've been thinking about my current course of study.  The genereal course.  One which does not require specific foreign language classes, or high level math (which to me is calculus and statistics).  A Bachelor Degree of General Studies.  I like to call it A Degree of Distraction.  (ADD, perfect!)

College, for me, was always a point of internal conflict.  Because I looked at it wrong.  I wanted to get out of retail.  I knew that for sure.  I had doubts that a journalism degree would get me something I enjoyed that paid well (I like to write, obviously, but for fun, under no pressure to perform).  Law and Medicine just weren't worth the time involved.  I thought for sure that a business major was the only way to go.  Which required Business Statistics (Which I managed to pass with a C for my AA) and business Calculus (the only class I have ever failed, luckily I was able to withdraw before getting stuck with an F on my transcipt), along with who know what additional accounting and economics classes (Accounting: one of few topics I have ever managed to get a C in...).  As you can see I'm very Grade Oriented, and anxious about trying to learn things that hold 0 appeal.  So I pretty much forgot about college and set forth to work for a living.    So here I was, 3 years ago, knowing that if I want to be promoted very far within my current company (which I happen to like), I would need a degree. 

Here's where the politics of College really started to become clear to me.

you see, with many large companies, the point of having a degree, and of having good grades/honors status is not because of what you learn.  It's because you were able to be taught.  You were taught various things.  you succeeded in learning, and the degree is proof of this.  That's where it ends.  The company wants you to bleed company colors, not school colors.  They are going to train you to do things their way.  Granted, sometimes you can take things you've learned in school and apply them, but overall, you are doing company work, so you will have to learn the company way.  The Company wants to know you can be taught, but they want to teach you. 

So I am earning my Bachelor's in a broad course of study.  General Studies.  I have found an interest in policital sciences, so several of my classes have been in that field.  I plan to encorporate a few health related classes (nutrition, kenesiology) and maybe a marketing class or two.  The point is, the course of study allows me to take classes that INTEREST me, which, as you well know, is CRUCIAL to successful completion of the course with a B or higher.  I work full time, and don't have the time or energy to force myself to study, work, write for a class I hate.  I have been enjoying it, for the most part. I have an online course that irritates me only because of the teacher's lack of follow through.  There's no lack of interest though.

So what's the point.  The point is this: Rethink College.  If there's not a particular path of study you'd like to follow, find a University that allows you to study anything and everything, with a few guidelines to ensure you are following a freshman, sophomore, junior Senior path to graduation with a well rounded curriculum.  My fear of College is gone, and the end is in sight.  My degree will not get me a job in the field of my choice, because I already have that.  My degree will allow me to move within the industry more easily, because it shows that I can be taught.


  1. I just finished Quantitative Analysis, which is pretty much just the second half of business statistics. It's not ADD oriented, at this point I just hope I didn't fail. I'll have my grade soon.

  2. Just the thought of more statistical analysis makes me frantic!