Monday, May 10, 2004

What they should teach you in college is...

How to think?!

Because obviously the public school system and your parents are failing when it comes to this task.

I am very tired of seeing managers/employers complaining that recent college graduates don't have enough practical on-the-job training/experience. Or their skills are not specific enough to the tasks involved. More, I'm tired of hearing college students and employers being erroneously informed that four year degrees or liberal arts education programs are useless when it comes to training a work=force. (see this student's note: http://www.pbs.org/weblab/workingstiff/speakup/messages/857.html).This may be true of some jobs, but not all. I've seen too many people who have risen to the rank of manager who have plenty of good tech-skills but seriously are lacking in the critical skills/and influencing people departments.

Though there's something deep behind the surface of this whole debate over the usefulness of a liberal arts degree. There's something more that drives this notion that to be marketable in a working environment we must have come out of the soft, spongy womb of the academic world (college) with skills not knowledge or even the 'power to learn.' I believe that it's tied with some funny notion about time to profit.

Maybe I'm tired of hearing people say that knowing how to write and interpret (soft information)is not important to one's work. Maybe I shouldn't be working in an engineering industry then.

Have all jobs on the market evolved to the point where you must be able to understand office applications or networking/hardware as soon as you come out of the womb? Or are people just following hard coding/numbers/ and what's tangible instead of using their intuition or looking at a bigger picture. It's this sort of micro-vision that's been paining me lately about working here.

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