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It’s a matter of degrees

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I’ll play the fool. How is it that I was interning for a county office position that requires a bachelor’s degree, but was being trained by 20-year veterans of that field who didn’t have degrees ? How is it that my stepdad, who has no college degree, was hired by IBM 15 years ago and is considered a front runner in his field by colleges? How is it that my mother-in-law, who has no college degree, climbed the corporate ladder at HP, retiring after 30 years? How is it that some companies were built off the backs of the “uneducated” (in 1980 only 20 percent of the work force had a college degree)? I’ll tell you why. It’s because people were humbled by receiving opportunities they themselves sought out based on merit alone. These capable individuals (without degrees), sought out and hired them. Today companies hire people with degrees, who hire people with degrees. Now, fast forward a couple of decades. Most people without a degree wouldn’t even dream of applying to the companies referenced. The key word in the last sentence is dream. Corporations have taken away our raw ambition, our fortitude to succeed, our drive, our desire, our aspirations for change and replaced it with degree. Corporations are now saying you can dream as long as you a have a degree, while the “average” person can’t even dream of getting one. If mom and dad can’t buy you a degree; if you don’t want to risk your life by joining the military in order to obtain a degree; if you don’t get a scholarship; or if you don’t want to go into debt by putting yourself through college, you’re facing an uphill battle. You could argue that folks with degrees have a much wider knowledge base for the specific positions they are hired for. But let’s face it, the playing field is skewed and hard workers are being overlooked. It’s a pity that corporations look past our innate human capacity to show favor to the “educated.” The question remains: are you going to point at the person who is pointing it out, or are you going to look at what I’m pointing at? People entertain the notion we are compassionate, understanding, cooperative, intelligent and God-driven, while playing survival of the fittest with our children. Mike Fabel, Rocklin