Is University a Waste of Time? – it depends who you are

I recently came across Alice Carder’s blog article discussing whether attending university will help you get a career – you can read her article here: http://alicecarderuk.blogspot.com/2010/12/article-in-independent-on-sunday-11.html

Alice cited a number of students opting for university just because they didn’t know what else to do.   Actually, Alice’s university experience is quite similar to mine, as I also achieved a first class honours and the course was very practical as well.  Also, there were students on my course who seemed to be there for the sake of it. But why?

Well, in my opinion, there is room for more entrepreneurism as we need to realise that the only way to achieve is by taking charge of ourselves and stop grasping at straws.  To do anything, you need passion and drive to push forward and to get yourself accessing the right opportunities.  However, our current army-like education system encourages discipline which is good, but it stops people from validating their own abilities by enforcing conformity and marking by criteria.

The university I went to treated us as adults and I would nearly always find myself debating about something.  In fact, there was a period of time when I had a kind of debating buddy with whom I had heated (but friendly!) debates about all sorts of things every week.  Oh god…what fun!

For me, university was really a life-changing period of my time.  It opened up my mind to different points of view, meeting fantastic people, and learning about myself.  The challenging time has been since leaving university looking for a job because a degree doesn’t alone guarantee a career but the process of achieving it is arguably more important than the certificate you get at the end.  This is only true if you’re really passionate about the subject-area you’re studying in the first place.

However, for people, such as my sisters, going straight into a career after school suits them better.  I’m really proud of my sisters as they are now building successful and enjoyable careers faster than me.  They took another route which has been just as challenging as university, but has provided an experience which has suited their needs.

Every now and then, I do get acutely jealous of their successes, but then again, I have followed my own path.  This has led to making my own film and meeting people who work in the media in which where I want to develop my career.

So, university is worth your time if you genuinely want to study something you’re passionate about and if you’re going for the right reasons.

However, if you choose to go out of convenience or solely because you think it’s a way to get that dream job despite lack of passion for the actual course, then university might be a waste of time and money.  Also, think about what you really want to do instead.  Do what feels right for you to avoid ending up in a career which might make you unhappy.

So, to round this article off nicely: Is University a Waste of Time? – it depends who you are!  Did you see what I did there?!

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© James Rose