Does this represent a bias or reality? So, I decided to start taking note when I hear of someone who is a success who was a stellar student….
Does education make you bad at investing in the stock market? Does it make you a bad investor?
One of my fears is that the US education system is hurting the chances of our best and brightest of being a success.
If I encourage my kids to be great students and devote time to making good grades, will they end up being successful students, but not successful in life?
In Excellent Sheep, the Miseducation of the American Elite & The Way to a Meaningful Life, Deresiewicz said there is one thing driving all the pressure in education, what he refers to as “…the insatiable need to be ‘the best.’” The idea that you don’t need to be the best also came up in World Class Learners: Educating Creative and Entrepreneurial Students by Yong Zhao, that the world no longer needs the United States to “be the best” but to be “part of the world.”
What is the worth of being the best?
This is a tricky concept for me. In many cases, the drive to be the best is what drives excellence. This can be how you achieve excellence….
In an earlier post, I talked about how in Excellent Sheep, the Miseducation of the American Elite & The Way to a Meaningful Life, William Deresiewicz says “The purpose of life [has become] the accumulation of gold stars.” (Excellent Sheep, page 16) How does he relate that to education? How does it relate to high school? Can AP failure teach kids how to fail?…
How do you choose a college major? Based on my own experiences and the job search experiences of several women I know, picking a major based on the classes you like isn’t a good method. And you have a good chance of ending up un- or under-employed. Unfortunately, this method of picking your major based on favorite classes is most likely to be recommended to good students, the kids who have worked the hardest. And, unfortunately, because girls are more likely to be model students, this probably happens to a greater number of women than men.
Colleges and universities should do a better job educating the students about what kinds of majors lead to which jobs….
In my last post, I summarized the experiences of several of my friends who chose their college major largely by the classes they enjoyed in school. I won’t go into all the reasons I ended up there, but my college major was in Chemistry.
Over the course of my summer internships, I realized didn’t really want to go into research. I don’t think I ever really thought I wanted to go into research, but research was where I was able to find summer internships. (And I worked really hard to find my summer internships. It wasn’t easy.)
As I neared the end of the completion of my degree, I spent hours in my universities “career office” …
You’re majoring in what? And what are you planning to do with that college major?
You’re probably thinking that I’d be asking that of an English major. At least, that’s the way the classic joke goes. Everyone knows you can’t get a job with an English degree. “Everyone” knows that English isn’t a “practical” college major.
But did you know you can’t get a decent job with a college chemistry degree? A biology degree? A math degree?…
In my reading I’ve noticed a lot of anecdotes about people who achieve outstanding success, and they usually don’t get there by the normal academic route. There’s Steve Jobs, of course, who I covered in this series of posts. Then there are several mentions of successful people in Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell. The idea that college isn’t needed for success came up again in How Children Succeed, by Paul Tough.
As a former top performing student, I wonder how much to encourage my kids to stay top performing. (That’s where my kids are now.) Because I’m starting to think that being a stellar student actually teaches out (or un-learns) some skills you need. I’m still collecting data. So, I’m also going to start taking note when I hear of someone who is a success who was a stellar student….
Both of the Steve Jobs biographies I read, Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson and Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader by Brent Schlender and Rick Tetzeli, were written by people who knew Steve Jobs personally. But there are a couple of small points that I think they overlooked….