or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › General › General Chat › Choice of college major and usefulness
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Choice of college major and usefulness - Page 5

post #61 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee_44106
The intent of the original post was this:

Assuming financial security is a priority for everybody, would it not make more sense to spend four years of one's young life in the pursuit of a subject/skill that will generate/guarantee said security?

For people who have more "education" after a four year college, such as physicians, lawyers, MBA's..etc, I suppose any major is OK (including music theory and art history ) provided one is subsequently able to matriculate in a graduate school.

That said, how good is the college diploma to those who don't further their education and end up subjects of headlines that report an increasingly difficult job markets for new college graduates?
double post deleted
post #62 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee_44106
The intent of the original post was this:

Assuming financial security is a priority for everybody, would it not make more sense to spend four years of one's young life in the pursuit of a subject/skill that will generate/guarantee said security?

For people who have more "education" after a four year college, such as physicians, lawyers, MBA's..etc, I suppose any major is OK (including music theory and art history ) provided one is subsequently able to matriculate in a graduate school.

That said, how good is the college diploma to those who don't further their education and end up subjects of headlines that report an increasingly difficult job markets for new college graduates?
And what people have pointed out is that your premise is problematic. If we assume you're Napolean, we can reason our way to many conclusions. Financial security is a priority for many people, but not everybody. And when you say it's "a" priority, that suggests that people may have other priorities as well. People balance and trade-off among their various priorities and values in different ways. And among people who put some value on financial security, other people's definition of "financial security" may be quite different from yours or mine.
And for many people - especially those who don't view college primarily as a pure financial investment - it may be more about the experiences one has at college than about the diploma. I suspect many people, as they mature and find their life's path, find that being a confident, broad-minded, well-rounded person may serve them better in the pursuit of financial security than a history of being a grind who is always obviously trying to "climb the ladder".
post #63 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nantucket Red
5 years of studying Japanese literature in the Ivy League: $100k of debt.

Landing a plum job on a fluke because of my knowledge of classical Japanese: Priceless.

I was a Chinese major myself. Have never regretted it.
post #64 of 80
In my art history class today, I had a student, probably mid 50's that is coming back to school to pursue what she was " really interested in", art and art history. Her first degree was in business. So in her financial security she can now pay the tuition to pursue what she wanted to all along...great, but she'll not get all that time back.
post #65 of 80
Thread Starter 
Lawyerdad, I AGREE with you wholeheartedly that colleges, as institutions of higher learnings, ought to be places where an interested person can gain knowledge in various fields, thus becoming a well-rounded gentleman/lady. My contention, or should I say personal preference, is that valuable youth and its attendant ability to take more stress...etc should be devoted to financial security SO that in the future, one may indulge in the pursuit of other knowledge, as Designprofessor posted about one of his students.

For instances, I love cooking, but I'm not a chef by profession. I recently found out that taking classes at most culinary institutes cost somewhere in the mid-thousands. I also love the study of history, and classes even at local community colleges are not cheap. I have always had a desire to learn piano too, and I gather it ain't cheap either, between the tuition and actually buying a piano. Thank goodness my current profession will allow me to do all these, as I slowly built financial security. And yes, I was one of those "grinds" in college.
post #66 of 80
First of all, regarding the degrees that people get, in the fields that I've been involved in (IT, health care, management, finance) it hasn't been important. I've met a number of CEOs that were English or History majors during undergrad. Acceptance to business school is less dependent on your major and more dependent on your work experience and demeanor in essays/interviews, and to a lesser extent on your GMAT score.

As far as the school in question, I would agree wholeheartedly that the school that you attend for a professional school will be important, but your undergrad alma mater will be quite a bit less so, IME. I've hired hundreds of people during my tenure as a manager and I pay only the slightest attention to their undergrad institution. Work experience and their interview performance is much more important, as well as their professional school if they are a MBA/MD.
post #67 of 80
I was a Chinese major myself. Have never regretted it.
\t
----------------------------------------------------------------

Kuomintang or red army?
post #68 of 80
I find this situation a bit amusing because I am in an opposite situation, yet totally mixed up about what to do next. As a matter of fact, I don't have a damn clue.

In Québec you can go study law right after Cégep (two years of pre-universitary studies, after high school) so that's the path I've chosen. I find myself with comfortable grades (3.27 GPA) that would allow me to get a position in a top-tier (maybe top 5 if I get just a bit lucky) law firm of Montréal, granted I have good interviews.

Now, I don't know if I want to be a lawyer. I am considering taking another universitary cursus, that time in humanities, after law. I'd pretty much go back to doing what I was doing in Cégep, but with more challenge. I'd like a cursus with a good share of classical studies and political philosophy. But then, there's trouble: by doing so, I would get into debt. And it is very unsure that this would lead me to any well-paying job.

I have some interests that could lead me to academia, but I don't particularly like that kind of career path. In fact, I would like to be run a business of my own later on, but I don't feel like going to business school. Perhaps I am totally wrong, but I feel that there is a lot more to do with critical thinking, being interesting and having ideas than mathematics in running a business.


If anybody has an idea of an universitary cursus like the one I am seeking, in which I could get in with my grades (though its studying law... I'd bet it'd be much higher if I was studying humanities, but you can't change these things heh), I'd like to know about it.
post #69 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdawson808
if your degree says Harvard and mine says State U., many many people will automatically assume you are the better qualified candidate whether for a job or for more schooling.

Sad, but true.
Quote:
When we hire, we look at what program you are from. It doesn't give you an immediate pass, but it can help. I was told by a friend in the dept at my (undergrad) alma mater that they "only hire from the top tier." Why? They want to improve their ranking.

Not so true. The top firms want to recruit at the best schools because the whole application process to get into those schools was already a sort of weeding out process to get rid of those undesirable candidates. Of course, there are people who are not in the top schools but are very well qualified for these jobs.

Quote:
It is a horribly unfair way of judging a person, but there you are. You want inot a top-tier law school? Better get good grades AND go to a top-tier undergrad school.

Actually, you just need a really good LSAT score.

Quote:
I've met some real boobs from Ivy League schools who I don't trust to tie their shoes properly, much less do stellar work. And I know some brilliant people who went to "mediocre" schools.

And your point is what? Because at every school, whether its podunk university or harvard, you will find both extremely smart and talented students as well as those not so smart.
post #70 of 80
At the top tier/Ivy League schools the chances of finding brilliant people are much higher than at podunk.
post #71 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by whoopee
At the top tier/Ivy League schools the chances of finding brilliant people are much higher than at podunk.

I don't deny that. I'm just saying that you'll find idiots at every school.
post #72 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by cchen
I don't deny that. I'm just saying that you'll find idiots at every school.
I think Yale may be a distinct candidate.
post #73 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing
I think Yale may be a distinct canidate.

Case in point: George W. Bush
post #74 of 80
Re: only hiring from top-tier programs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cchen
Not so true. The top firms want to recruit at the best schools because the whole application process to get into those schools was already a sort of weeding out process to get rid of those undesirable candidates. Of course, there are people who are not in the top schools but are very well qualified for these jobs.


I was talking about academia specifically. Departments (at least in my field) don't hide that they have standards below which they will not go when it comes to what program you're coming from. My undergrad alma mater is sort of top of the pile tier 3. In conversation one day I was told outright "we won't hire from below tier 2 and would prefer tier 1 so that we can move up." Even where I teach (undergrad only) we seek to hire from the most prestigious unis. Harvard and Phi Beta Kappa? Great. Harvard but no PBK? Great. State U and PBK? Great. State U and not PBK? Not nearly as good. Why? So we can improve our rankings. I can't speak about the private sector.


re: grades from a mediocre school not getting you into law school.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cchen
Actually, you just need a really good LSAT score.

In this case I was speaking from personal experience. Good LSAT, okay grades, just "okay" undergrad school. The chair of the admissions committee at this top-tier law program told me I wouldn't stand much chance of getting in because my grades weren't offset by being from a better school. So, all other things equal, having gone to a "better" undergrad institution would have helped me get in.


re: I know boobs from Ivy League schools.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cchen
And your point is what? Because at every school, whether its podunk university or harvard, you will find both extremely smart and talented students as well as those not so smart.

That was my point exactly. Just because the school on the degree is "Big Time High Profile Ivy Covered School" doens't guarantee the candidate is better than the candidate with "Podunk State U." on their diploma.

bob
post #75 of 80
All this talk of Ivy league schools is really missing the point. There are many private schools that cost just as much, or almost as much as Ivy, that do not give these same opportunities after graduation. That is what I find to be puzzling.

Sure Ivy schools are expensive; however, there are distinct benefits. What about the schools that are expensive without the benefits? Why go?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: General Chat
Styleforum › Forums › General › General Chat › Choice of college major and usefulness