Monday, February 25, 2013

And furthermore…

Ted Turner, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Walt Disney never graduated from college. Consequently, they would be unqualified for employment by any business that requires a degree.

This is in support of my contention that a college education is not essential to success and that any enterprise that requires a college degree for employment cuts itself off from an enormous pool of genius and talent.

I recall a young photographer who had just graduated from Ball State University in Indiana who thought he knew all there was to know about photojournalism. Turns out, he was practically useless when he went to work for a medium-size daily newspaper. He kept shooting photos in which the people were turned away from the camera. When his editor kept pestering him to shoot photos where you could see people’s eyes, he asked if that was some new trend in photography. Ball State let him believe he had an education for the thousands of dollars he or his parents spent.

A college photography instructor once said all students have to do to pass his class is just show up. The quality of their work is apparently of little consequence. I’ve seen plenty of graduates of that school and only meet a handful who impress me.

Conversely, none of the really good reporters and writers I’ve known are college graduates.

This may all seem self-serving, since I’m a two-time college flunk-out, but I find it infuriating that people with really impressive ability and life experience are excluded in favor of applicants with a room temperature I.Q. who hold a degree of dubious worth.

The most talented and creative designer I’ve ever known or worked with repeatedly ranked as the top ad designer in Indiana without the benefit of a degree. (She just earned an associate’s degree from a community college, graduating magna cum laude.)

I’ve ranted before about businesses putting too much emphasis on how an applicant scores on mostly mumbo-jumbo personality tests, which leads me to believe that most hiring policies are based on erroneous benchmarks created by people who lack the confidence or competence to properly evaluate an applicant.

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