This is a response to “Is College Dead? Class From A Student’s Perspective” and it was originally posted on Medium.
As you have learned by now, college is not a must to start a business. There are people who own successful businesses and have not finished high-school. They learned by experience what you have learned in class (and in life).
That goes both ways. The fact that someone finishes college does not mean he/she is entitled to a great job.
Education is actually slowly but steadily evolving. More and more companies are getting into that game and also students demand it. This evolution though is slow for the better I believe. Imagine if a whole system that involves students, proffessors, staff, companies and governments changed every year. There would be chaos. It is better to change small stuff in a slow and reliable manner than to jump to the newer trend all the time. The same happens with law by the way.
There is actually a say:
If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.
Now that we got that out of the way, let’s talk about what you get from college.
1. You don’t get to reinvent the wheel
It is magical to learn from your own mistakes. However it is very time and money consuming. Imagine someone who makes carriages. Does he learn from someone how to make something simple like wheels or he tries by himself to start and invent the wheel from scratch?
The core of your trade remains the same. In college you learn the absolute core and build on top of it.
2. You learn in depth
College lets you learn things in depth if you study hard and learning things in depth is invaluable.
Keep in mind that there are people getting second and third degrees to learn things in depth and not just to put them on their resume.
Take for example Elon Musk. He could have started his awesome career two years earlier but he didn’t. He took his Bachelor of Science degree in Economics just after Bachelor of Science degree in Physics.
This gave him the advantage in many ways.
3. Valuable connections and experiences
You probably wouldn’t have a sense that the people in your story existed if you skipped college.
You also wouldn’t have met your professors.
Your professors are not recordings of a class. They are most of the times respected and successful people in their field. You should learn about their work and ask for advice. They know the industry and it’s needs.
4. College broadens your horizons
Kind of cliche, I know but it’s true and it is the main stuff.
Steve Jobs was inspired by college (even if he dropped out). He was inspired because it gave him the ability to explore things that he didn’t know he liked.
Some more down to earth examples?
Some engineering students and friends in my university were excited about medicine and they published with some medicine students, a paper on bio-medicine that has seen great success.
Another guy I met at a party last month, is ready to leave for a university in France to write algorithmic economics simulations because he took an economics class and he liked it.
To conclude, college is not obsolete. Sure it can improve but it has great value even in its current form
Having said that, I hope that your business thrives and that I’ll see your watches soon on people’s wrists or even mine!☺