Author Topic: College Grads...Do you use your degree?  (Read 1066 times)

Offline Scott

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College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« on: October 6, 2003, 02:04 PM »
I use my degree extensively because I am in a highly trained and dangerous environment and one flub up means people could be hurt or killed.  But I look no further than Mrs. OCB who has a bachelor's degree in Music Therapy to see that there a lot of people in the world who went through 4+ years of college and spent a lot of time and effort for something they don't use

I think to many people are being told they need[/i] to go to University or College when in fact they do not, it is a status symbol thing...

How do you feel about that time and effort and money that went to something you didn't need to do your job?  The social side is probably just as important which I'll agree on...

Offline Brian

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #1 on: October 6, 2003, 02:09 PM »
Great topic, this is something I've been wondering about lately too.  Personally, I don't really use my degree, but I do use some of the things I learned in college.  I changed my major a few times (started with Computer Information Systems, then went to Business Administration, ended up with Exercise Physiology...I know, big change!).  Although I really enjoyed my classes in Exercise Physiology, unfortunately I found out there isn't much out there for jobs, unless you are able to go on to further schooling, and even then it is only in the medical field.  I could go back and save a little bit of time if I pursued something like Radiologic Techology, Respiratory Therapy, Nursing, etc....but I could have just went to a two year school in the first place for that.  Anyways....I don't really use my Ex. Phys. knowledge in my job (although sometimes in my daily life, or when people ask me questions), but I do use some of my Business and computing classes now.  I probably should have just continued to get my business degree, seems you can go a lot of different directions with that.....live and learn I guess.

Offline inadvertent imitation

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #2 on: October 6, 2003, 02:11 PM »
My parents keep ragging on me to get a college degree. Well, I want to make films, and find the money for a degree is better spent on a camera. I have a two-year, but it doesn't do me any good because it was just high school in a two-year stretch.

Does this in any way contribute to this? I'm not sure.
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Offline Scott

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #3 on: October 6, 2003, 02:18 PM »
Totally HMI, I think there a ton of people who think they need to go to college because that is what society is saying these days to do.  Colleges are more than happy to take your tuition money as well.  

I know a ton of people just like my wife though that went through school and said, huh, now what?

Offline MisterPL

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #4 on: October 6, 2003, 05:07 PM »
No one's ever asked to see my degree. I list it on my resume, but I've never been asked to present it.

In my field - art - it's about the portfolio, not the education. In fact, I'd hire a graphic artist who could fake a convincing degree. (Of course then I'd have to keep a really sharp eye on him...)
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Offline JediMAC

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #5 on: October 6, 2003, 06:54 PM »
Yeah, this is an interesting topic.  Do we use our "degrees"?  Maybe not from a technical standpoint at times, but obviously just having a degree listed on your resume can very well potentially open up some doors.  Sometimes that's all employers really need/want to see (at least for the younger folks).  Is that really fair, and the best way to judge talent?  No, not necessarily.  I'm sure there's also people who list degrees on their resumes even when they don't have them.  It's probably helped some to slide into a job, while at the same time, you occasionally hear the horror stories of someone getting caught lying about having a degree, and then they're even more screwed...

Do we use the knowledge and ideas that we learned in college in our everyday jobs?  Occasionally, but I'd guess a lot of folks never do.  But there is something to be said for the experience of learning how to "learn" or expand your mind at a more advance level.  College can perhaps open up the doors for a lot of people, but a lot of times you just wind up getting thoroughly trained when starting a new job anyway.  Training that you could likely get, and a position you could probably handle, with or without your college experience.  I'm sure there's plenty of exceptions to that idea, but there's also plenty of examples of it as well.

It varies for everyone and every place of employment I suppose.  As for me, I'm sure that seeing UCSB on my resume helped get my foot in the door at my auditing firm, but I've used practically nothing that I actually learned in college here at my job.  I've learned the ropes through a lot of training and practice.  Granted, I seemed to be ahead of the class when it came to such things as business writing and such.  So perhaps there's a few things I learned that have helped.  But if I hadn't been to college, I'm rather doubtful that my bosses here would've given me a second look way back when I first applied.  I believe everyone in my office sans one has a degree.

There's definitely a lot of truth to the notion that many people feel pressured to go to college though, and if they don't that they're some type of failure who will never stand a chance in the real world.  I know most parents want what they think is the best for their children, and society even dictates this is what you should do, but that's not always fair, or even what's best for everyone on a case by case basis.

I always planned on going to college, just 'cause that's what everyone else was doing, it's what my parents wanted, and it's what I figured I had to do if I wanted to get into business.  But once I got to college I quickly became distracted, and my studies became the last of my priorities.  If I didn't feel like it would completely let down my parents, I would've probably quit on numerous occasions.  But I stuck with it, on and off for NINE years...  :P  Glad I did, but like I said, it's not for everyone, and people shouldn't be made to think that it is, or that they're less of a person without it...

I sure can drink a helluva lot beer pretty easily now though!   8)
« Last Edit: October 6, 2003, 07:01 PM by JediMAC »

Offline Jesse James

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #6 on: October 6, 2003, 08:40 PM »
I've used my current degree somewhat, but I've also had jobs that didn't apply it much at all.  Mostly I have used it in discussion with other people in the business world or in my personal life in one way or another.

My current schooling hopefully will make my current education a little more useful.

Business degrees, be they economics, Marketing, Administration, etc., all tend to put you in a large pool of eligible workers.  I've found that I have to keep my options open out of what I may considered my ideal or the exact place I'd be at a certain point in my life.  It makes me worry about work, but I'm confident in my own abilities that I'll be capable of getting and retaining gainful employment at some point of my life.

The irony is I wanted so bad to go for English, to become a writer...  It's what I was really good at when I was younger, and what I was pushed towards.  I never went that route though because I don't know that I'd ever be as successful as I want to be by becoming a writer, whereas in Business I know my potential to be successful is much more higher.  Too bad though...

Maybe someday I'll be able to put my creative side to work with my rigid and strict business side, and be happy in the work place doing what I have been educated in while still having the ability to make my life interesting at the same time. :)  

I hope...
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Offline dustrho

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #7 on: October 6, 2003, 09:05 PM »
I earned my degree in Journalism (TV Broadcast), but was never able to find any work in that field.  For the last 7 years I have been working with computers (tech support, web design, network administration, application security administration, sales).

College builds you into a man/woman, but most people never actually use their degrees for their careers.  Sad, isn't it?
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Offline Boba Binks

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #8 on: October 6, 2003, 10:19 PM »
I have a Bachelors in Visual Communications - Graphic Design. (I.U.)
An Associates of Appiled Science in Visual Communications - MultiMedia Specialty (I.U.)
Art History Minor (Herron School of Art / I.U.)
and an extensive background in traditional art practices. (Herron School of Art / I.U.)

With my education I have not landed a permanent job in my field. It seems since 9-11 all jobs in my field have been put on hold. That I why I freelance (Contract) jobs and work on the side for a small firm.
I have currently put in for a position at PetSmart as the Aquatics Manager. I worked there through high school and college. So I figured why not go back.!?!

I paid a but-load of money for my education and I do not have a job to show for it. At least I was able to fullfull one of my dreams and was hired (contracted) by LucasFilms to create the 25th Anniversary Thank You card for Mr. Lucas. Because of that one job many places have told me that I am over quailfied.  **If anyone from LucasFilms is reading this.... PLEASE CONTACT ME FOR A JOB!!!
« Last Edit: October 6, 2003, 10:23 PM by Boba Binks »
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Offline Jimmy

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #9 on: October 6, 2003, 10:20 PM »
I have to totally agree w/ some here that college for some is IMHO a big waste of money. I can not begin to tell you the numerous friends that I have (or have had) that went to college to basically accrue even more debt than when they went in.

Yes many graduated and walked away w/ a degree for whatever it was the majored in... though 95% never got into a field that put that degree to any use at all.

I never stepped foot into a college classroom... From high school I wnet straight into the work field and started life that way. I started in retail and fast got into management positions. You'd never believethe amount of retail workers that have a degree and work at the same level I did... To me it was actually sad...

I know people that attended great schools like Georgetown, Berkely Music, and much more...

I do feel that for some people college and a degree is just something to help them have a place in society.
I think college can be a great thing and plan on trying to have my kids attend... though you need to make sure that the sucess rate for a job in your major is higher than most...

Otherwise I feel why bother... I recently worked in the travel industry and never knew a thing about the industry prior to getting in the door. I knew management and customer service side of things but nothing more...
I did great where there and only a minor conflict caused my to lose my job there... nothing beyond my performace there at all caused that. In the year and a half there I was had the highest selling revenue in my department.

So it shows anyone can be taught enough to rise to any level of any company... if they truly want to.
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Offline Morgbug

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #10 on: October 7, 2003, 12:40 AM »
Quote
I sure can drink a helluva lot beer pretty easily now though!  

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Offline Mikey D

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #11 on: October 7, 2003, 07:23 AM »
I have one and it actually is almost a requirement in my field of choice (Construction).  Whether its an estimator (me), a project manager or superintendent, most firms require the experience and a degree from an accredited school.  And it helps that my college has a co-op program where you have to have a minimum of two semesters working experience in order to graduate.  Definitely helps you get your foot in the door.
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Offline Sith Lord Cosmo

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #12 on: October 8, 2003, 09:52 PM »
I think its a little early to tell whether I'll use my degree or not.  I have a BS in political science.  People think you're smart if you're a poly sci major, but its a cakewalk degree.

I'm currently enrolled in law school to get my JD.  Its actually questionable whether I'll be using my law degree when I graduate.  It depends on if I can get into the field I want.  

My undergrad degree has helped in law school so far.  I already knew how our goverment and court systems work and are set up.  And, it helped in my Consitutional Law class, since I had read a lot of the cases before.  I wouldn't say I'm using it though
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Offline DarthWormie

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #13 on: October 9, 2003, 01:55 PM »
I received my BFA In Graphic Design and am currently employed as a Senior GD, so I guess that's a yes for me. Alot of my friends that I graduated with though (including my wife) received their BFA's and diplomas in illustration or painting and they now employed in "traditional" jobs like lab work, retail, desk jobs.
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Offline Rob

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Re: College Grads...Do you use your degree?
« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2003, 01:22 AM »
It isn't so much using the degree as it is having it.

Going through school is one of very few things that will separate otherwise equally qualified people.

My degree was interdisciplinary and allowed me to study Film, Photography, Video, Art History, and Art Theory.  I only graduated 5 months ago, but it's worked out so far for me.