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  1. #1
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    Default Is college/uni a waste of our time and money?

    In my ripe old age of 30, I've been back in school for two years. During all that time, I have had to take numerous classes that have nothing to do with my chosen profession. However, they are mandatory classes to take in order for me to get a piece of paper that says "yea, he went to school even though he wont get the necessary training till he gets a job". What is the point of taking all those pointless classes that have nothing to do with what your career will be?

    i.e., algebra, policitcal science, english, etc.

  2. #2
    Where're the cookies? swinebread's Avatar
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    Well statically speaking, people who have graduated from college make more money than people who donít. So yeah, if money is all youíre worried about, it is worth it.

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    Elder Member Winslow's Avatar
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    College is not a trade school. It's about learning to think.

    I don't believe it is a waste of time and money, but something needs to be done about rising costs.

  4. #4
    Were You There? Michael P's Avatar
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    The point is broadening your horizons and gaining a general supply of knowledge about the world.

    Plus, once you're done, you'll be living the cake life.
    "If you can't say anything good about someone, sit right here by me." - Alice Roosevelt Longworth, on manners

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  5. #5
    BANNED TheTen-EyedMan's Avatar
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    I did the three years of a law degree, 3 years of working as a legal secretary in a Chicago firm and I was unemployed (living off savings not welfare) for 6 months. I'm now working on a comics related website and trying to break into the comics industry. Tell me if I didn't waste my time at Uni.

  6. #6
    aka Encyclopedia Brown BoosterBronze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheTen-EyedMan
    I did the three years of a law degree, 3 years of working as a legal secretary in a Chicago firm and I was unemployed (living off savings not welfare) for 6 months. I'm now working on a comics related website and trying to break into the comics industry. Tell me if I didn't waste my time at Uni.
    I know a lot of guys who would kill for a chance to go to law school, and have the oppurtunities it would offer. Your troubles in the legal profession (If you're trying to break into comics, was your heart ever REALLY in it? :) ) are hardly a fair condemnation of the university system.
    Currently playing as Encyclopedia Brown in the Traitor Game!

  7. #7
    Swing your razor wide. Grazzt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoosterBronze
    I know a lot of guys who would kill for a chance to go to law school, and have the oppurtunities it would offer. Your troubles in the legal profession (If you're trying to break into comics, was your heart ever REALLY in it? :) ) are hardly a fair condemnation of the university system.
    I completely agree.

    Still, not everyone will benefit from a university or college education. I think you really have to sit down and think for a long time before deciding whether or not you want to put the time, money, and effort into it.

    For instance, I'm seriously thinking about either dropping out of university or changing my major or program. I'm in Math (Comp Sci major), and despite being in one of the finest co-op programs in the country, I've yet to land a co-op placement. My marks are okay, its just that I'm pretty sure I'm just not good enough a programmer for the computer industry, or I lack other skills that they're looking for. I probably made a mistake entering this program, but that's not the fault of the university or the underlying system.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by swinebread
    Well statically speaking, people who have graduated from college make more money than people who donít. So yeah, if money is all youíre worried about, it is worth it.
    Well they make more because the jobs that pay more require a degree. I am not saying they shouldnt, I am just saying that a lot of the classes (in my view of course) are just a waste of time and money.

  9. #9
    Essayist and Gadfly Bradley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Golon9977
    Well they make more because the jobs that pay more require a degree. I am not saying they shouldnt, I am just saying that a lot of the classes (in my view of course) are just a waste of time and money.
    If you honestly feel that the critical thinking skills and broader knowledge of the world you're acquiring through a liberal arts education is "just a waste of time and money," then I think I can safely say that college definitely is not for you.

    Still, the fact is, most employers do want employees who can demonstrate logic (as taught in math, science, and freshman composition courses), analytical thinking (as taught in history, literature, and sociology), and creativity (as taught in art, theatre, and creative writing classes). So, in that sense, every class you take is preparing you not only for your career, but for living in a complex world.

  10. #10
    Hey, brother. Matt Algren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Golon9977
    In my ripe old age of 30, I've been back in school for two years. During all that time, I have had to take numerous classes that have nothing to do with my chosen profession. However, they are mandatory classes to take in order for me to get a piece of paper that says "yea, he went to school even though he wont get the necessary training till he gets a job". What is the point of taking all those pointless classes that have nothing to do with what your career will be?

    i.e., algebra, policitcal science, english, etc.
    I feel your pain. I'm in year two myself. I'd disagree that what you've cited are pointless, but I see where you're coming from. I'm trying to figure out why I give a damn about geology, which I get to spend three classes studying starting next quarter. I also get what Winslow and others are saying, but man, I hate spending money on things I know I'll never use, and spending time when I have to do this part time while I work full time.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I have a feeling that time is the big issue. At least it is for me. When a four year degree has to be spread over six or eight (or nine or ten) years, it really feels like you're spinning your wheels.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bradley
    If you honestly feel that the critical thinking skills and broader knowledge of the world you're acquiring through a liberal arts education is "just a waste of time and money," then I think I can safely say that college definitely is not for you.

    Still, the fact is, most employers do want employees who can demonstrate logic (as taught in math, science, and freshman composition courses), analytical thinking (as taught in history, literature, and sociology), and creativity (as taught in art, theatre, and creative writing classes). So, in that sense, every class you take is preparing you not only for your career, but for living in a complex world.
    The math we'll need at work is basic, unless its a specialized work of course. So this math has been acquired since we were children. In my case its nursing. A basic knowledge of math is needed with the remainder of the math being a knowledge of splitting doses, reading mL, mg, etc. I don't see how albegra is needed.

    Science classes are a necessary for nursing so I am not disputing that one. Creativity and analytical thinking- well those are not really necessary for a nurse outside of what was taught in high school.

    As for what employers seek- well they want to know if you have a degree and your previous experience. Nothing else.

    On a side note, does anyone know what are the pros and cons of a trade school?

  12. #12
    optimist moebius's Avatar
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    Jobs that do not require a university degree are getting scarcer and less appealing. So unless you are a phenomenal athlete, a statistical aberration (ie a Bill Gates), or willing to move to a crappy country to do a manufacturing job, if you don't get a university degree you will be working in a low-end service job the rest of your life.

    If nothing else, college teaches you how to write and how to build an argument, and it sends a strong signal to employers about your abilities.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Necktie
    I feel your pain. I'm in year two myself. I'd disagree that what you've cited are pointless, but I see where you're coming from. I'm trying to figure out why I give a damn about geology, which I get to spend three classes studying starting next quarter. I also get what Winslow and others are saying, but man, I hate spending money on things I know I'll never use, and spending time when I have to do this part time while I work full time.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I have a feeling that time is the big issue. At least it is for me. When a four year degree has to be spread over six or eight (or nine or ten) years, it really feels like you're spinning your wheels.
    Let me ask you why do you disagree with it being pointless if you know you wont be using this knowledge once you get your career going? Most things we learn in college are forgotten anyway so why even learn them in the first place?

    And yes, time is a big factor, especially when youre working full time and trying to squeeze in the study time needed to pass an ridiculous class that you'll never use in the future.

  14. #14
    Elder Member Charles RB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Golon9977
    What is the point of taking all those pointless classes that have nothing to do with what your career will be? i.e., algebra, policitcal science, english, etc
    Because if you can pay attention, understand and do well enough in those subjects to get good marks, you get a piece of paper officially saying you're smart. Employers like to know they're hiring people who are officially smart. Also, knowing stuff is always good anyway.

    Plus English? You won't need to read, write and dissect written stuff in your day-to-day life?
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  15. #15
    Hey, brother. Matt Algren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bradley
    If you honestly feel that the critical thinking skills and broader knowledge of the world you're acquiring through a liberal arts education is "just a waste of time and money," then I think I can safely say that college definitely is not for you.

    Still, the fact is, most employers do want employees who can demonstrate logic (as taught in math, science, and freshman composition courses), analytical thinking (as taught in history, literature, and sociology), and creativity (as taught in art, theatre, and creative writing classes). So, in that sense, every class you take is preparing you not only for your career, but for living in a complex world.
    See, that's the thing. I think Golon is looking at this from a pragmatic point of view. I don't want to speak for him, but taking classes that don't even tangentially relate to the degree, really chaps my ass. I'm not there to learn how to think, and I'm not there to gain a broader perspective on the world. I'm not there because Daddy made me, or because that's just what you do when you graduate high school. I'm there because this is what I have to do to make more money.

    Some of the courses, quite honestly, feel like they were chucked into the list just to pad it out to four years.

    *I also acknowledge that these perceptions are based on my biased point of view.*

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