The Worth Of Education In Modern Society

I had an interesting encounter today, well rather I found myself eavesdropping on an encounter. I was in my local small food-market buying a few necessary groceries for my house. When I entered to frozen meat section an employee passing out samples was in a deep and rather active conversation with a customer. I am known as the guy that enters establishments and gets lost people watching and eavesdropping due to my never-ceasing curiosity. The employee was a middle-aged man and the customer was a thirty-something woman. She was exclaiming enthusiastically how she is from New York and wishes to return. I learned quickly that she worked as a paralegal. He, the employee, was British and he was telling her that he studied law at Cambridge University. When the customer heard these words come out of his mouth she raised her voice with surprise and shock asking why on Earth was he here working in a market passing out samples.

This is the point when I couldn’t decipher much more from their conversation as I had already spent enough time pretending to be not listening and walked away. But the thought lingered in my mind. He studied law at Cambridge and now he is here at my little neighborhood market surely not making much in the way of wages. This is not the first time I encountered someone of this sort but it is a topic that has been weighing heavily on my recently.

I often find myself contemplating a return to school to further my education. I am not very educated after all at least according to how society sees such matters. I only attended some college studying subjects I was interested in and topics that concerned my work in lighting and digital video operation. I worked my way through a high school education meaning I learned early on that this country or world rather revolves around money and making deals. I have a whole back-story of how I managed to ‘work’ my way through high school (actually being paid better than most of my teachers), but I’ll discuss this some other time.

I thought about seeking a journalism degree so people might take my work more seriously or more for me to actually feel good calling myself a journalist due to a societal stigma. This I have found would be a massive waste of my time considering after my education I would end up interning doing less than what I actually do now. Learning that most journalism majors would kill to be able to write like I get to for a popular website like Generation Bass. Also I looked into some of my heroes and learned they too have no degree. It comes down to the trade off. I would have to risk an incredible amount of time and money on studying for this degree when instead I could continue to grow and work. By the time I would receive my degree not only would I be in massive debt but also I would surely not be far along in my career as I will be without studying for it. I researched a lot of articles throughout the Internet and found this to be almost certain.

Enough about me, I wish to address the education issue as a whole. While studying for medical degrees and law degrees are necessary to work in those fields it seems no other degrees are worth it in comparison to personal experience and drive. In this age and this economy it seems that education is one of the worst choices one can choose. I hate to admit this because I love to learn and I study many topics by my own will to learn and understand.

This is another thing I noticed. It seems that in University the students study primarily for test taking then move on to the next test. As society has shown me people who have degrees don’t quite know as much as I at one point in my life thought they did. I was playing tennis with my good friend a week or so ago. He has a master’s degree in psychology. I was telling him that I was currently studying embryology because I was interested in it. He quickly stated how he can barely remember much about that subject and hated it. And that it was just one of those things he had to be tested on in University. This brings up my point that personal interest and drive to study a subject is far more superior than to an education through the system. Not only this but he also was telling me how he wished he didn’t study for his master’s in psychology as he’s now realized he is unhappy with is chosen profession.

Time and money is what it comes down to. Is time and money worth it just to appear in society as an educated person? Does a university or college degree really matter in modern society anymore (excluding doctors and lawyers)? Or is it more about experience? In this economy today I think it comes down to whether or not an employer feels secure with hiring someone whom they strongly feel will deliver results and I feel that experience is the deciding factor. For example if you hire me as a music journalist I can guarantee results due to my history and strong readership which I developed over a long period of time working hard gaining experience.

I personally haven’t made my mind up but I’m sure you can see which way I am leaning.

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