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  1. #1
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    Default Is a college degree essential for getting a good job?



    We know that when students are ready to leave high school/college and move into adulthood, there is a lot of pressure surrounding the question of "What college/University will you be attending?" There is a lot of pressure on students to attend college and University in order to further their education before going into their careers.

    But, is this college degree really essential in order to be successful and have a good career?

    Let me know your thoughts below!


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  2. #2
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    The issue nowadays with university degrees is that because so many people are enrolling on them, many employers use the need for a degree as a simple way to cut down on the number of applicants even though a degree may not be completely vital for the job role. This then creates a demand effect whereby more and more people are then going for degrees in order to get jobs that really shouldn't require them.

    There's other structural problems also with the job market in Britain, some which we are now seeing change because of the UK's decision to withdraw from the European Union. From the early 2000s, many lower skilled jobs (and skilled jobs) were in intense competition between native Britons and immigrant workers coming in from Europe, particularly the Eastern bloc countries which joined in 2004. This meant that for the average HGV driver, the plumber, the bricklayer, the factory worker, the coffee shop worker, it was driving down wages because of an endless and unlimited supply of cheap labour from Eastern Europe - not to mention a spiralling decline in working conditions given that Eastern European workers would endure cold nights in HGV vans or sleep 10 to 1 room whereas British workers - and rightly so - expected much better working conditions.

    But this oversupply in cheap labour did not just affect working conditions and drive down wages, it also led to British employers becoming lazy and unwilling to train apprentices because the way they saw it, why spend capital + 2 years training a 17 year old British lad to lay bricks when you can simply import an already trained Latvian to do the job immediately. This then impacted the number of people trying to get onto degrees, as many would have liked to have done jobs such as working in the trade industry but felt that there just wasn't the training opportunities out there.

    Britain now does have a shortage of HGV drivers and hospitality staff. And you know what? That's great - only the other day I saw that Waitrose had given a pay rise to its drivers to £55,000pa which is the same as some of its executives. I've also seen hospitality such as restaurants and bars and hotels offering *much better* working conditions and even wages over the national minimum wage. It's about time those in these industries had a ladder to climb, and hopefully in the future not everyone will feel compelled to get into £28,000 of university debt as there will be more careers where you can start out at the bottom, live decently and shape a career out of it.

    Now that immigration has been cut, we're seeing a rise in wages + conditions. Let's hope we now see less degrees and more apprentice opportunities follow aswell.
    Last edited by -:Undertaker:-; 02-09-2021 at 06:08 AM.


  3. #3
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    Another problem is that a lot of colleges/unis are dishing out courses for students to get a degree in that never once needed any, which is causing another problem in itself. Nurses for example never used to need a degree, you'd learn on the job, which I think worked pretty damn well, whereas now-a-days you get fresh faced young people leaving school and heading to college/uni to do a degree in nursing, understanding the theory and whatnot behind it all, then after 3-4 years, finally achieve a degree to get a job and find out they don't like the job or wasn't what they expected etc... At least learning on the job you fully know what to expect and aren't likely to have people leave for that reason.

    I don't think having a degree is really necessary to have a decent paying job, most people are able to do most jobs if you show them how to do it. Some might be better than others, as is expected. I mean as Dan mentioned, anyone can take their HGV licence and earn 55k a year, which has annoyed me because that's for general haulage only, whereas car transporters who earn 58k a year haven't had a pay rise either, so a lot of car transporters have been bailing to go to general because it's a much easier job and for near enough the same money. Any car transporter can go general haulage without additional training, but to be a car transporter is a specialist skill and requires additional training, which is why we get paid more, used to be on average around 10-15k more, but due to the increased wages in general haulage, that gap is slowly closing in. But anyone can take their class 2 and then class 1 licence, and earn 55k a year, heck most companies will even give you a 2-5k signing bonus at the moment, so first years wages will be close to 60k a year, and all it'll cost you in total for both licences is around 3k... and it's not like it's a skill that don't last, you'll have it till you no longer wish to renew it (as requires a medical every 5 years after age 45)

    Also there are a lot of people heading to college/uni to get a degree just because it's the norm, not necessarily because it's something that they're passionate about, most of them have no interest in going onto work in the industry/field that they got a degree in, which then creates a bunch of young people who expect a job handed to them on a plate and thinks that the world owes them something or that they should get X or Y job because they have a degree.



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  4. #4
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    @Triz;

    I completely agree with the point on nurses, and that goes for other professions as well. For teaching as an example, it is pretty much demanded that you have a degree... but I do not see why someone who say got good A-Levels, then went into finance for 10 years, and at age 30 then decided to become a Maths teacher - why should that be considered impossible when the chances are that he as a teacher is better at applied Maths/Economics than the student who studied it for 3 years at university? There's got to be a way of testing someone's competence in a subject they want to teach than making them spend £9k a year for 3 years to prove what they already know.

    One of my greatest teachers in school was my Chemistry teacher and he worked at Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) for decades, and then went on to become a secondary school teacher. He was by far ahead of other teachers in terms of knowledge and experience because he'd studied it in practice and not just in theory.


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    I think this is a very good question.

    If your going into a vocation ( Medical, Teaching, ect) and there is a need then yes, if your going to do something for the sake of it and because you enjoy it then no.

    I completed my first year at Uni and dropped out due to the open endedness ( Public Health and social policy - Ironically). I then went full time and worked my way up the structure whilst a lot of my friends were studying for their degrees. 5 years on, none of my friends have used their degrees in order to push their careers ( they all work in local call centres ) which is fine, but is pointless and a waste of money ( mad debt).

    It's something I have always knocked myself for, not having any formal qualifications in my field ( until my recent job switch), my employer actually admitted they wanted experience rather than anything formal. So I guess it depends on where you are, what you are and what the interviewer values more.

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  6. #6
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    Conceptually speaking, in the context of their original premise, as structures that have been engineered many years before the establishment of our current perception of society and economic status, the Universities are (or should be) environments of voluntary specialized study, voluntary research and, at its best, individual and collective intellectual development, period.

    The problem is, with the advent of the capitalism as the primary motor of our everyday lives, it came with it the dangerously false promise of the higher education as a stereotypical and objective notion of professional success amongst most of us, kind of as if we were literally taught, ever since the beginning, that the colleges are, by definition, a "high school in steroids", on which you learn stuff and then quit, this place one plainly goes to in order to OBTAIN something (including high-end jobs, etc.) more than they will actually give.

    If you only have the END of the journey in mind when you consider yourself prompted to apply for Uni, you most likely will spend these X years of your life in profound disappointment and delusion! The entire popularesque idea of a college student as someone "more valuable" for the professional background is nothing but a collateral consequence of their conscious academic and intellectual autonomy, meaning that it's not *exactly* the fact that you have a diploma or some extra fancy lines in your career portion from your Twitter bio that will magically turn you into something more prone to do what you're prompted to, since it's not hard to assume that, as basically all the systems, even the educational ones have their flaws and will, in some cases, put you in an existential pedestal and allow your parents to pridefully list your entire achievements during the Christmas dinners even though, for whatever reason, you didn't let the academic life, let's say, mold your capabilities enough to make you substantially eligible for a "quality" career.

    It's not exactly up to the academy, nor it is its main purpose, of course. The education doesn't, technically, owe you the road to Oz. Indeed, the final goal of a teacher is to become useless. But it will definitely help you, if you allow yourself to take it, and be humble and dedicated enough to let it change you. Whether or not you NEED to go to college in order to enhance your brains to become better off at your callings is contexty but, if anything, if you don't mind reading, writing and being productive a little, nothing like being voluntarily overwhelmed by a panorama in which not only you get a closer contact with people whose dreams are, in some way, compatible with yours, but also (hopefully) funds the infrastructure and general resources that would make you lightyears ahead of your alternative self-taught sessions?!

    Knowledge is still cool in 2021. For some unspeakable and lousy reasons, the mainstream culture tends to, at times, undermine the idea of being a student by Steve-Jobs-ing themselves with some ****tupid philosophies as in "I didn't need to go to college to be successful!" which, IMO, is as stupid as going to college *just* to become successful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by -:Undertaker:- View Post
    @Triz;

    I completely agree with the point on nurses, and that goes for other professions as well. For teaching as an example, it is pretty much demanded that you have a degree... but I do not see why someone who say got good A-Levels, then went into finance for 10 years, and at age 30 then decided to become a Maths teacher - why should that be considered impossible when the chances are that he as a teacher is better at applied Maths/Economics than the student who studied it for 3 years at university? There's got to be a way of testing someone's competence in a subject they want to teach than making them spend £9k a year for 3 years to prove what they already know.

    One of my greatest teachers in school was my Chemistry teacher and he worked at Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) for decades, and then went on to become a secondary school teacher. He was by far ahead of other teachers in terms of knowledge and experience because he'd studied it in practice and not just in theory.
    Being better at maths doesn't make you a better maths teacher. In fact, some of the weakest maths teachers I've met have actually been the strongest mathematically. Unfortunately knowledge on how to calculate the Gaussian curvature of a helicoid is completely irrelevant when you have a class of 14 year olds in front of you. Understanding pedagogy is the most relevant aspect of becoming a successful teacher - having a wider knowledge of your subject or more experience in the field doesn't replace that.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kardan View Post
    Being better at maths doesn't make you a better maths teacher. In fact, some of the weakest maths teachers I've met have actually been the strongest mathematically. Unfortunately knowledge on how to calculate the Gaussian curvature of a helicoid is completely irrelevant when you have a class of 14 year olds in front of you. Understanding pedagogy is the most relevant aspect of becoming a successful teacher - having a wider knowledge of your subject or more experience in the field doesn't replace that.
    That is true, but it also doesn't mean that having a university degree makes you better at teaching. My stronger teachers did not go to university for teaching specifically, and most of them had previous/some experience in their chosen field prior to becoming teachers. The worst teachers were the 20 to 35 year olds who came straight out of university.


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