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University should not be trade or professional school.

That ship is in the Guinness Book of Records under, "Longest distance sailed." These days, practically every university student is there to better their job prospects.

Unfortunately, the thing that I think would be the most useful doesn't seem to be available. I would like something that was somewhere between a trade school and a university.

I have a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, which is really the minimum degree I would have chosen to get a job in my present field. However, probably at least 50% of the classes I took to get that degree were a complete waste of my time.

"Trade schools" in my view have a reputation for not having enough depth in the field for which they are targeted (at least, in the United States). The perception when I graduated was that a CS degree was way better than any "tech school" degree -- if you wanted to get a job, that is.

I would have loved to have gone to a school that offered a very deep Computer Science program that was targeted just at Computer Science. I didn't need or want English, Philosophy, Sociology, and all of the other worthless classes that I was forced to take to fulfill the requirements. Math classes make sense, those have useful applications in my chosen field.

And I don't have a problem with anyone that wants to take those kind of classes either. It's just that I had a specific goal in mind when I enrolled, and the results could have been so much more satisfying if the curriculum had been better targeted.

If I were starting over today (with all the resources available on the internet, etc) I would consider not going to college at all. It has become prohibitively expensive in the United States, and from what I understand things have not really changed much (and if they have it is probably for the worse). There are a ton of very high-quality resources for learning available online (many of which I wish I had more time to use). I am not at all discounting the value of well-designed classes in a school setting. However, I do think that people tend to underestimate how much a self-driven person can learn on their own.

Also, I would be far more likely to plan to be self-employed (if I were starting today) that I would have been when I was entering college. At that time, I just wouldn't have considered it. Today I'm sure that I could make that happen.

Right; to be clear, Instead of University students could be directed to a trade or profession that would suit them better (than wasting everyone's time in a four-year institution)

I think you've completely missed the point of what university is for. University is to study something you're passionate about at a high level, it isn't neccesstily a gateway to a job. There are plenty of people who study something such as art or history but then never go into careers in any way related to those. Dictating people's university choices is a terrible idea.

Right but a huge amount of students are taking loans (because they cant afford school at the moment) for college so they can pay it back when they have increased job prospects. It doesnt make sense to spend 60K on school if you will never be able to pay it back.

Very true.

We held up 'having a bachelors degree' as a requirement for getting a job, no matter what the job is. It's a way of narrowing the applicant pool.

And it completely distorted the purpose of university.

IMHO, everyone who qualifies academically should have the opportunity to - free of charge - go to university. It raises the level of cultural discourse.

On the other hand, trade schools are completely stigmatized in this country - and many of them are simply scams that don't do a very good job at training you at all (see: ECPI).

Post-secondary education in the USA is completely ass backwards, with conflicting priorities, an upside down profit motive, and a cultural perception of either being absolutely necessary or absolutely lib'rul and evil intellectualism that's-a destroyin' amurka.

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