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Education Versus Experience

UnknownHello Everyone,

Although I have been thinking about this topic for a long time, the will to actually write today’s post was inspired by a recent comment.  My book is currently in its formatting stage, so I also have some down time from that as well.  More on this soon…

The topic of education versus experience is of such great significance in society and I feel that because most of us are so used to believing what we are told about education, it is not really discussed or analyzed.  We are told, no fed, that if we go to college we will get a great job, right?  Then why is it that so many graduates cannot find work?  Why is it that college graduates are going back to work at jobs that they did in high school?  Why is it that employers are expecting job applicants to have the degree, yet they want them to have several years of experience as well?  Please tell me how this makes sense.  Because what these employers are telling me is that along with the degree that these graduates have spent thousands of dollars for, they must somehow miraculously find some time within those 4-6 years of school to have the “experience” needed for the job.  What these employers are also telling me is that a college degree is not enough.  Somehow, someway, these graduates must be provided with the necessary “experience” for their career choice.  So what does that mean?   Mandatory vocational school (which means more money that these students don’t have)? Or perhaps a reconstruction of the education system in which students are given the necessary courses and training for their career choice.  Why is this not being done already?  I feel that it’s because it is not the students that truly benefit from this twisted system.  They are told that they must go to college to get a good job, and when they graduate and cannot find a job, they go back to school in the hopes that an advanced degree will get them somewhere.  Yet, that doesn’t work because they are still lacking the “experience,” and so in the end they are forced to work at low-rate jobs in order to pay back loans that accrued throughout the years. Crushed and Shattered dreams.   It is so heart-breaking when I listen to stories of college graduates that had big dreams and much hope after school only to have them crushed and destroyed by the contradictions of the “real world.”  And with that goes their happiness and the increased rate of depression in college graduates.

What we are not telling our students is the truth. It’s not all about the economy as we are told. A degree will only get one so far.  Once one graduates they may have to start at the “bottom” in order to get where they want and gain the “experience.”  And if they don’t want to start at the “bottom” they better do a lot of praying or depend on the ridiculous, unfair but true scenario that someone they know will them get in. What I don’t understand about the necessity to have experience for a career is why companies will not take the time to train their new employees.  There are of course the select few that will train the new employee for up to two weeks, and that’s great, but not all companies are the same.  One may say that this is because companies do not have the time to do so.  And what I say to that is this is one of the issues that we have as a community: we are not taking the time to help each other, and it’s always one person for themselves.  There are so many college graduates that are eager and longing to get out in the working field, and therefore I can assure you that most will do whatever it takes to make sure that they do their work right and learn quickly because of the happiness and relief of being in a job.  Besides, if one is educated, they will surely learn quickly, correct?

Because of the issue with needing experience with education, a lot of people are lying on their resumes. Say for example that you were reading Mr. Doe’s resume and he has all the experience and education needed for the position, and the interview went great, and you decided that you want to hire him right away. Even so, you still take the time to interview the rest of the candidates. In the end, you do in fact hire Mr. Doe.  Now because Mr. Doe lied on his resume, he knows absolutely nothing about the job that you hired him for.  You noticed this a little and decided to give him some time to get his act together, but that doesn’t work.  Then you spend some more time contemplating the fact that you hired someone who had no idea what they were doing, and some more time in figuring out what you should do next.  Eventually you fire Mr. Doe and you have start the hiring process all over again or try to recollect candidates that were runner ups.  How’s that for a waste of time? I’m not saying that this happens all the time, but I have seen something very similar to this situation in my own life.

There are times when education is not that significant.  For example, there are several people working for the state that do not have a degree or have an associates degree and they are making much more money than those who went to college. That is because some commenced working for the State as a clerk or what not, and over time, much time, they receive a higher position due to their experience (and knowing people for some).  These type of workers are deemed successful by societal standards and are respected based on their experience and job position. Not their education.  How interesting. Then there are those (who count for many people in my life) who did not go to college, and are working what in society deems as “lowly” or “blue collar” careers.  I’m talking about the construction workers,  waiters/waitresses, store associates, etc.  Most assume that because these people did not get a “proper education” that their thoughts and words and hearts and passion are insignificant, meaningless and pointless.  As I have mentioned in my previous posts, these people, and I’m speaking for those in my life, are the most intelligent, kind and wise people that I have ever known. They work harder than those in a “good job” and their viewpoints on life are so much more interesting and thought-provoking than those with an “education.”  It makes me so angry to see the way these workers are portrayed in the media.  It makes me even angrier when customers don’t even look a waiter/waitress or store associate in the eye when addressing them.  The giving and receipt honor and respect should not be based on education or on what one does for living.  It should be based on the actions of the person and their character.  You can tell so much about a person by the way they speak and address other people.

One of my commenters pointed out that you can always tell when one has been formally educated.  I say that this is true on some levels.  If one were to talk in-depth about the stars and moon and they’re composition, exact names and coordinate placement in the galaxy then one would probably say that that person is formally educated in astrology.  Now if a waiter who did not go to college, but studied astrology for a hobby (I did so when I was younger, so yes people do this) were to speak to you about the same topic would you assume the same thing? What does it mean to tell if one is “formally educated?”  “Formally” as in going to college?  Although we learn plenty of things in college, there are several, as I’m sure you know, that leave college not knowing anymore than when they went in because they were too busy doing other things.  So even though they have a “formal education” does this make them better than the waiter that did not receive any? There are many doctors that receive a “formal education” but give their patients drugs they have no business taking and a diagnosis that make no sense.

Hope and honor are such a big part of this topic, and I can go on and on.  But I’ll leave it here for now.  Thank you Urban for your comment and for igniting the flame of today’s discussion.  I hope to hear what the rest of you think as well.

Peace and Love

In Honor Of

Dear Readers,

I sometimes get the feeling that we as a society are afraid feel and let others see our emotion and compassion.  And sometimes we can just be flat out cold.  I’m sure some of you have seen the show “What Would You Do?,” well this is a story from a first hand experience.  I used to live in New York City (NYC), and as most know, NYC has thousands of homeless on the streets and in the subway trains.  Sometimes that person is not homeless, but a severely disabled or scarred member of society that needs some change for surgery or what not.  More often than not, these people are asking for money and food.  As a child, you learn to adapt to your surroundings and you observe and blend into what is “normal.”  Therefore as a child, I thought it was completely normal to ignore a person in need and pretend that they are not literally standing in front of you asking for help.

I moved away from the city when I was ten, and it wasn’t until I was an adult that I rode the subways and walked the streets of NYC again (I was visiting family).  I cannot describe the immense pain and heartache I felt.  The majority of that emotion was not only because the person was disabled or homeless.  It was because 1) That person was being ignored by a train full of people or by hundreds of passerby and 2) I could not imagine how that person themselves felt to hear complete silence or no movement of help towards them when they ask for it (not say that there weren’t some noble souls).  Whenever I could, I gave to those on the subway some money and offered a prayer of blessing to those on the street and to those I did not have cash for.  Like most, I sometimes wonder if they would actually use that money for good, and you know what I think to myself?  I say “it’s on them.”  It’s on their soul if they decide to take advantage of person when he/she is doing something that they see right.  I say to myself “don’t worry what others think, or what that person may do with the money.  You’re doing what you think and feel is right.”  I sometimes feel like we use the “they’ll use it for alcohol” excuse because we are afraid to show compassion for fear of being looked at as weak or foolish.  If something is the right thing to do and it feels good, why not do it?

What is ironic about this topic is that emotion is treated completely differently when it comes to the media.  Although it is their job to tell the news (and stretch the truth), the media tends to focus much too much on drama, and it is at times ridiculous and even offense.  I will never forget when Steve Irwin died and the media asked his beautiful daughter, Bindi what she thought Steve would be saying to her at that time.  Are you kidding?  Can you get any more invasive that?  And with a child?  Bindi smartly responded (and I’m sure her mother wisely prepared her for this intrusion) that the answer to that question was private.  When the media was interviewing survivors after the 2011 tsunami in Japan some of the first words that they used to describe a man was “he looked like he’s been crying for days.”  Then there was the infamous question of “I know it’s hard on you, but can you describe how you’re feeling right now?”  In tragedies of the past and tragedies of today this stupid question has never failed to be asked.  We as viewers see the damage, destruction and the same horrific and saddened faces of people who have suffered because the media shows them over and over.  We do not need to know how they feel because we can see it.

Good deeds of course happen everyday, and sometimes the media does capture it.  I’m sure that most have heard the story about a cop buying and giving boots to a homeless man.  Although it is great to hear good news often, I sometimes wonder why this has to be news in general.  Then I remember my past experiences and realize that it is quite rare to see something like this happen.  This is a good thing, and yet it is a reminder of something sad.  With that being said, good deeds should be done in the shadows (when it can be helped of course).  And whether we feel brave enough to do it in the open or do it when no one is looking, we can sometimes feel helpless, which can make us not help at all.  We can feel helpless because we may feel like we are not able to effectively reach those in need whether they are near or far away (so we can therefore feel like our help has no impact), or because we simply don’t carry cash to give to those in need (I rarely carry cash).  To that I say “in honor of.”  What I mean is, if you feel like you cannot help someone for whatever reason, do something in honor of them.  For example, you can donate clothes in honor of those in natural disasters who lost everything.  You can donate blood in honor of those who lost their lives.  “In honor of” can also simply be giving someone a thought or prayer of hope and well-being.  Even if you have the money in your pocket to give to those in need, just giving them a simple blessing from the heart is doing something.  Do Something.  I promise it will make you feel good and perhaps make you a little happier.

I hope today’s post has reached you.  Let it light a flame inside of you.

Peace and Love

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