Monday, February 02, 2009

"Is a GED more valuable than a PhD?" by Kai Ma

Here. I think that the article overlooks something very obvious, which is that between entry level jobs and academic jobs there's a whole strata of positions, but that these won't likely hire PhDs because they don't have the qualified "real world" skills on their resumes. No matter that they completed a doctoral dissertation, in the world of corporate America they're just people who have been students for a long time. Meaning that, yes, someone who has a GED and has worked at a company for a while will possibly be seen as more valuable than a PhD, which is a symptom of how fucked up our system is. The funny thing is that I was in school for an extended length of time, although I don't have an advanced degree, and I've found that the "Real World" experience that employers talk about being so valuable are things that trained monkeys can do. Like "Follow Directions". I've read Fichte, you think I can't follow directions? "Follow Directions" was actually what a person giving a talk about jobs said that responding to an online job posting in the exact way they want shows them you can do. While it is important to follow directions, it's quite an insult to tell people who have likely done things of several magnitudes greater complexity than what this person has done that they're being tested to see if they can "follow directions". Like I said, I've voluntarily read Kant in my free time for no other reason than just knowledge and understanding the world, you think I'm so undisciplined that I can't "Follow Directions"?

Corporate America rewards morons who are obedient and who have smooth, superficial, uncomplicated lives and punishes people who have skills but who have taken a somewhat different track to get there, including in this case a college education.

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