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Reply #11: I hate conversations like this. No major is useless unless [View All]

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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-16-07 09:45 AM
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11. I hate conversations like this. No major is useless unless
Edited on Fri Feb-16-07 10:22 AM by Lydia Leftcoast
you adhere to the idiotic American belief that job training is the only purpose of education.

The most worthless majors are those jerry-built ones that lead to a specific job title, such as Financial Planning, Personnel Management, or Corporate Health and Fitness but give the student no intellectual tools for thinking or dealing with ambiguity. Such majors are the breeding ground of freepers, who can't see outside their narrow little worlds.

Until the late 1970s, employers hired English, philosophy, and music majors for management training positions. Many people of my generation were able to obtain such positions. That was when companies appreciated people who had a broad worldview and could think and write clearly.

Two things changed during the Reagan administration:

1. The MBAs took over the world. Within about five years, corporations stopped hiring anyone for management training who didn't have a business or computer science degree.

2. Anti-intellectualism became even more dominant in American life than it had been before.

In people's real working lives, they struggle and flounder in the beginning, but eventually they find their niche, and they may change careers several times, ending up in careers that have nothing to do with what they majored in.

I majored in German and minored in French in college, and my entire career has been with Japanese, both as a teacher and as a translator.

I didn't always appreciate my general education requirements when I was a student, but I credit my broadly based educational background for my success as a translator. A translator never knows what she will be asked to translate next, and the kind of knowledge and research and writing skills that I acquired as a liberal arts student prove useful on a daily basis.

So grow up and take every opportunity you can find to learn more about the humanities, social sciences, and sciences.

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