Lost in the endless prodding of our mothers, fathers, and greatest-generation Grandparents is the notion that we should all go to college to get a good education. “Nothing will get you a job faster than a college diploma” we’ve all heard. Ok. Fine!
So you decide the career that will suit you best is that of an architect, or a nurse, or an electrical engineer. You enroll in the local Community College and start picking your classes. Almost without fail, new students scan the list of classes that an adviser and some formal-looking documents tell us are required in order to be granted a degree in some field. Cultural Art credits are required to be an electrical engineer? Wannabe nurses have to pass college algebra to help care for people? Really?Secondary education students all over the country choose, pay for, and complete a battery of prerequisite classes without so much as questioning their practical application to one’s professional decision. We do it because the college makes us. We do it because in order for the college to retain their “accreditation”, they must enforce what they will all say is a “well-rounded education” in a variety of disciplines.
What would happen if the education students received was focused strictly on the professional direction they have chosen? Sure, after work, when you are out at a bar maybe the additional knowledge will help you answer an trivia question as you are bellied-up to your Budweiser. They might even help you find a spouse as you show deft intellectual prowess on a variety of topics — after all, no one wants to marry an ID-10-T.
When will people who want to learn how to do something be allowed to dictate their own education instead of having it spoon fed to them?