What is the difference between someone who has gone to college and those who haven't?
I'm currently attending college and have often wondered if there is a real difference because I have met quite a few people who have attended college who are just as bright as any college student.
those who don't graduate will basically never make more than minimum wage. unfortunately, but it's true
[quote]I have met quite a few people who have attended college who are just as bright as any college student.
After you've graduated, come back here and re-read that statement. It'll tell you everything you need to know :P
Going to collee exposes you to a variety of disciplines and should leave you knowledgeable about a variety of subjects. The education one receives cannot be substituted by life experiences. By the same token life experiences enhance the education one obtains.
I have found that many professors are cloistered in their own little enclaves oblivious to the outside world. They are essentially big fish in little ponds. It took real life experiences for me working in the inner city to understand just how isolated they are with all their intelligence and education.
They maybe as bright as anyone, OP, but they don't have the training that a four year degree will give you in nursing, engineering, computer science, etc.
College is a big life experience in terms of the variety of people that you are surrounded with in an academic setting and the wide variety of knowledge you are forced to be exposed to. Not to mention the basics of being able complete any assignments in a manner to pass.
It is not to say one cannot replicate the educational experience in college, it can happen, but there is a reason why a college degree means something.
College sharpens abstract thinking skills, socialization, and teaches independent living. It also has many of the same problems as lower education with regard to misbehaving students.
I went for a year, got a 4.0, and dropped out. I don't think I'd have gained much other than a credential had I graduated. I didn't see the point in piling up debt when I already had job skills, and if I wanted to get rich, I could have just become a broker on Wall Street, or started a business.
Bottom line: a degree matters a lot until around age thirty, at which point your resume takes over. At twenty-six, I got a job that "required" a degree, but I was obviously the best qualified, so they hired me anyway. I continued to self-educate after leaving school so I'm a bit of an exception. Even edited a graduate-level textbook in the social sciences recently.
If you want to learn, nothing is stopping you. If you want to impress people, however, knock yourself out running up debt and see where it gets you. Like any long-term system, this one has been gamed, and is functioning as a shadow welfare system, with many unemployed turning to student loans (which will then be bailed out down the road) to keep the economy moving.
One big problem with college life is that so many people feed at the higher-education trough that they don't really understand what it means to fightfor survival. Too theoretical and ivory-towerish.
A few more fancy words, if you're lucky.
Most of the college graduates I work with are fucking idiots. Cheating your way through school in order to obtain a piece of paper with a seal on it is not "learning". Cheating is rampant in college. I went to University for two years starting at age 17, found it to be a tedious waste of time. Got a job, and built my first house by the time I was 21. While my peers were graduating college with huge debts and moving back in with their parents, I was already established with a mortgage, a new car, and a job where I was learning a high-tech skill. By the time I was 30, I was in Senior Management - Director level positions. Some people are just not cut out for college - I was one of them.
There really isn't a difference anymore. Anyone can go to college today.
You can't teach "smart" - you are either intelligent or you're not. The best thing about college is the connections you will make that will be helpful later.
But college ceased to be about "learning" a long time ago.
It depends on where you went & what you majored in . A science or engineering degree from Harvard, MIT or Princeton? You're smart, you can solve problems, & you work hard. You can teach yourself a programming language.
An english degree from a small liberal arts school or a large state university? It means you know how to use Microsoft word, and can probably spell. Might help you get that 1st job out of school, but after that, employers want to know what you can really do for them.
There is now an educational 'industry' in this country turning out lots of graduates with worthless degrees. It is fueled by the availability of gov't-backed loans. There are a lot of people with nice, cushy, secure $100k+ jobs working in education, so they have the incentive to tell people how worthwhile their product is.
Bottom line: if your degree can actually get you a well-paying job, it's worth it.
Education is what you make of it.
What I notice most involves the social aspect. When a kid goes to college AWAY from home they get that first taste of freedom and responsibility which is a great wake up call for what it would be like to be on their own. They also get to experiment. Many guys and girls (more girls actually) explored same sex relationships in college, it's a great environment for that.
More years of educations means more knowledge and edge and possibly confidence some way or another over less educated ones, but does not guarantee great success or wealth. But in real life as far as career is concerned, being smart is key.
I got into an argument with a department head who was pissed that all his managers had MBAs and he didn't. He was a cunning and shrewd man that got his position by guile and toadying. He asked me what I thought my "fancy, schmancy" degree would get me.
I replied that the point of a degree was not to "get" me anything. The point of education was an investment in me to make me a better me.
Ultimately, that is the goal of education.
To answer OP: bigger cunt.
[quote] College sharpens abstract thinking skills, socialization, and teaches independent living
[quote] There really isn't a difference anymore. Anyone can go to college today.
The first statement used to be true. But most colleges are a business proposition today, and they'll herd anyone through who pays for a diploma.
I am in my thirties and back in college. I achieved a lot in my corporate work by work alone, but I can't move to the next level without a BA, and I left school after year one because at that time, I'd run out of money and options.
But the twentysomethings I take classes with are so apathetic. It's really sad. I'm soaking up all the content and it's enriched me. They can't be bothered to pull away from Facebook long enough to care.
[quote] The point of education was an investment in me to make me a better me.
Yes, a million times yes. Ultimately, that's the point of it all.
A few things come to mind.... someone with a degree has shown they can set a goal and achieve it over time (graduation), generally speaking they have probably been able to mature a bit, and it would be expected that they took some type of logic / critical thinking course.
The first one is a biggie though - setting out to graduate, and being able to follow through over 4 / 5 / 6 years shows perseverance, and being able achieve a long term goal.
"those who don't graduate will basically never make more than minimum wage. unfortunately, but it's true"
I hope your weren't an English major.
I dropped out after my sophomore year. I had always loved to write - irrespective of school - so it just seemed like a waste of money to me.
Went on to make my living as a journalist, development executive, copywriter and creative director in advertising. Right now I consult for non-profits doing their marketing strategies. I haven't made less than serious six figures in over a decade.
So to me, it really comes down to what drives you. If the initiative and intelligence are there, college won't make much of a difference unless of course you want to be a doctor, lawyer, scientist, etc.
Sure, sometimes I feel a little incomplete. But not very often. Some of the most extreme idiots I've worked with went to big ticket universities.
I got a B.A from a decent state school and I managed to graduate without ever spelling well, or even knowing the basics of grammar. And, I was an English major. It allowed me to read a lot of books without feeling guilty. In the end,I gained nothing but the fact that I can call myself a "college grad," and I'm well read. I think I would have been well read anyhow. At least, I didn't go into debt.
[quote]College... teaches independent living.
Nothing teaches independent living like moving out of home at 18 and working for a living full time. University students actually develop later in that regard.
Colleges are all really different and the experience is different at all of them.
People who went to a decent school and were serious about getting an education tend to have wider knowledge and sharper thinking skills.
Non-college-educated people tend to reveal big holes in their education. If you are around college and non-college people long enough you'll see the difference.
[quote] Nothing teaches independent living like moving out of home at 18 and working for a living full time. University students actually develop later in that regard.
I respectfully disagree.
I was the one at R19 who left college after year one and just recently returned.
But that year was very helpful at teaching me how to use a checking account, shop for groceries, pay bills, doing my laundry, working with a budget, etc. - skills that some thirty and fortysomethings I know STILL can't manage.
That being said, some schools coddle their students so much that they never learn how to handle things. A few years ago I lived and worked in a midsized college town. A young woman at the laundromat could not figure out the coin operated detergent dispenser, or the machine itself. Sad.
OP did not say the difference between someone with a degree or not. The answer is yes, there is a huge difference because they don't teach you to think in high school. Of course, most colleges don't teach it either, but even one year in college will teach the worst dullard more than their previous 12 years of schooling.
More than one year....optional. It's really just more of the same stuff.
To give a concrete example, Nelson Mandela spent 27 years in prison but came out of it a national leader in his party. How is that possible? It's possible because he had a legal education before apartheid that was not available to younger people who were prevented from doing that work. The day he was released from prison he was still the biggest legal expert they had. That is one example of how college made a difference.
I can't say that I learned anything in uni that I use on a day to day basis. I do believe the fact I completed my undergrad degree in 4 years while working full time shows a bit of tenacity and desire to complete that employers find attractive.
[quote]But that year was very helpful at teaching me how to use a checking account, shop for groceries, pay bills, doing my laundry, working with a budget, etc. - skills that some thirty and fortysomethings I know STILL can't manage.
Oh, I see. I wasn't considering the students who go away from home for university. Where I live, students still live at home, whereas people who earn a living after secondary education and forego university become more independent earlier.
Someone who has gone to college is singular. Those who haven't are plural.
Undergraduate school didn't do much for me. It wasn't until I got to grad school and I had to critique research that I really honed my inductive and deductive reasoning skills.