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Updated on Tuesday, July 21

#21121

OMG: Why spend thousands of dollars getting a liberal arts degree like history if you won't be able to find a job once you graduate? Unless your parents are loaded with money, I don't think it's worth it. Go study a trade at a community college. I'm not saying studying history isn't important, but in terms of finding a job, it's highly unlikely you'll have an easy time.
 

38 comments

  1. You never know whether you will or not. It's about the person, not the degree.

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    1. Actually you can get a pretty good idea based on statistics such as number of jobs in the field, number of grads with jobs that require the degree, number of grads with the degree that are unemployed, etc. It's not just a guessing game.

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    2. Sure 1a, that's true - but that doesn't actually mean it'll be useless for you. 1 is right, it's about the person, not the degree. If you're going in to a liberal arts degree expecting it to ultimately land you a job, you'll probably be disappointed and unemployed sooner or later.

      What makes a difference is how well you can leverage your own experience and soft skills to actually MAKE yourself employable, and how you can take the breadth of knowledge you attain during your degree to heighten those skills. Being able to make friends in the right places is important, too.

      Failing that, it doesn't hurt to get a Master's degree.

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  2. There are some students who learn for fun too, you know. Some even pay out of their own pocket. You can't make assumptions on people.

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    1. You spent 4 years of life to do absolutely nothing useful?

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    2. >nothing useful
      >the human experience

      Have fun dedicating your one and only life to making money.

      If you enjoy a field that makes decent cash (I'm lucky I like math) then that's great, but its not a big deal either way. We're in a western country you'll be perfectly fine as long as you're smart.

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    3. To 2.a, nope. What I'm referring to is older adults who'd like to keep the brain sharp or study for fun.

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    4. 2a. Useful for what, for making money? Your definition of "useful" does not necessarily coincide with other people's definitions of "useful".

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  3. You "don't think it's worth it." Good for you? Your opinions have no bearing on other people's decisions?
    Honestly, I'm not in liberal arts but why the fuck are you people so invested in other people's lives?

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  4. Why study at a university when your view of education is so small-minded, your personal affect is so creepy and uncomfortable, and your opinions so mean-spirited that not only do you not learn anything beyond mundane practical matters, but no company would want you around except to keep you cloistered in a cubicle?

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  5. Well, think about those in Women's Studies. At least the history majors are not ever going to come to bug you.

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    1. So sexist. But as a cis-white-male, I whole-heartedly agree with you.

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    2. @5a yeah I'm with you on that. I'm a straight white American wealthy stem male. I try to keep it real but damn, can't help but look at those Women's Studies students spitting in peoples faces and going "Aw jeez" ya dig

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    3. I don't understand what you're saying.

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    4. 5b, 5a here. I'm stem as well. Good thing there are people like thunderf00t and Lauren Southern out there...

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    5. Indeed. Few voices of reason in a crowd of morons.

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  6. People have their own motives OP. Who knows what they are planning for a career? Who are you to say they won't be hired? Do you have experience in the real world looking for employment? Personally I know a number of people with liberal arts degrees that have made something of themselves. This concept of the university training people to be employable right out of graduation is relatively new and is debatable at most. It's businesses trying to save money by putting the onus on the taxpayers and the individuals themselves. Many employers want a person that's educated, meaning they are able to take information and retain it for use at a later date. These employers will train the individual after graduation into positions that fit the person.

    My question is when did university go from being a institution of higher learning to something of an adult daycare for those not yet ready for real life where one needs to take a program that is "needed" by businesses, ie. not a liberal arts degree? I know this is not the case generally, but something of a selling point for UW in particular.

    I usually think of the loose analogy of university/higher learning as to being a gym. Not a particular gym, but the idea of a gym where people go to better themselves in their own way. People like you OP remind me of bros' who frequent the gym. They don't go to the gym to better themselves, but to look good for the ladies (businesses, jobs). So they tell people don't work on the leg (liberal arts) work on the upper body, arms, and abs (STEM fields). Then when someone comes in just to do leg workouts these bros judge and mock them. The bro's themselves will skip leg day repeatedly resulting in bulking up top, but have little chicken legs after they finish going to the gym.

    I could also use the analogy for co-op also. I think of a particular gym (UW) having a table at the front reception area for the gym. They are selling memberships for Tinder (co-op) enabling the thought that going to the gym is only for attracting others physically (jobs, employment). This is fine and all, but the gym gets greedy. They want everyone who enters their establishment to get a Tinder (co-op) account even if those people don't want to. Is it a conflict of interest? Members at this gym like it because it's easier to find people (jobs) not necessarily better. What about those that don't need Tinder (co-op)? That's more of an issue I find worrying about university now.

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    1. holy fuck i didn't know i wrote that much.

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    2. I am glad you did. Great analogies, I was laughing all the way through. And I completely agree with the points you make.

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    3. Actually, bros at the gym never skip legs. Its the casual scrubs doing only upper body that get made fun of.

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  7. But college is college, not as prestigious as University. College are for poor kids.

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    1. Poor kids? Ha. Buddies of mine who did trades get my avg. new grad salary off the bat, although with dirtier work, e.g. plumbing, electrical, pipefitting, welding, etc. Never look down on tradesmen, they're the ones who build the world you live in.

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    2. That's a terrible opinion to have, and entirely false.

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  8. I am one of these people in liberal arts, yet I kind of agree with you OP. If your goal is to get a great job from liberal arts alone it may be tricky. I am in liberal arts to complement my college diploma from a couple years ago. Thanks to my college diploma I have a job in my field already so I can just take classes I enjoy to make me more well rounded.

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  9. Why spend thousands of dollars getting a degree in something you hate just to get a job you'll hate?

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    1. You're only at your job ~8 hours/day, 5 days a week. The rest is free time/sleep. If your options are:
      1. Get a job you hate (but pays well) and spent your free time doing everything you ever wanted to do (scuba dive, sightseeing, going to concerts, etc.)
      2.Get a job you enjoy (but pays like shit) and spend your free time working at Starbucks to make ends meet.

      Which one would you pick?

      Ideally, you'd get a job you love (that also pays well), but if you graduate from liberal arts thats going to be tough.

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    2. ^ Apparently learning about false dichotomy is not needed for some degrees. Rather sad really.

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    3. 9a, you must be joking, right? 8 hours is 1/3 of 24 hours. 8 hours for sleep + 8 hours for work (not including the commute) is now at least 2/3 of your life. The meager remainder will make you miserable, even though you'll try to deny it.

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  10. I regret studying CS/math in university, because I'm in my 4th year and everything that's been taught to me I'd already learned on my own because I was interested in the subjects. I wish I'd taken something like fine arts or history, topics I also really enjoy, that would allow me to have interesting, meaningful interactions with non-technical people.

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    1. In my opinion, it's so much easier to develop conversational knowledge in topics like fine arts or history. All you have to do is read, and there's a ton of material out there.

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    2. Why not go and get a liberal arts major?

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  11. My parents don't have a lot of money, but I knew I wanted to go to university. I decided to instead pursue a degree I didn't like because at least I would have a better chance of finding work afterwards. But if it were up to me and if my parents had a good financial stability I would major in a liberal arts or something too.

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  12. I'm a hot white girl in computer science and I agree.

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    1. And I'm a classically handsome white guy with a trust fund who majors in Gender Studies.

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  13. You do realize that history is one of the top foundation degrees for law careers, right? And that the skills developed through a history degree are valued by employers? A lot of employers will happily take a history/arts major with good soft skills - communication, team skills, writing skills - and build their technical/industry knowledge.

    Tons of good teaching, consulting, management, gov' jobs out there. Not everyone needs to work as a programmer or engineer.

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    1. Exactly. My cousin (who's considering the genius in our family because he finished high school with like a 97% average) majored in English because it was something he really liked and then went on to become a successful lawyer.

      One of my former bosses in this company I worked at had some sort of environment major and now he's a project manager at a business - completely unrelated to his major or field of study but he's still doing well.

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  14. In the short term, a 'less desirable' degree might be an obstacle to finding employment quickly after graduating, in the long term I don't think it makes a lot of difference. One of the most successful IT people I know did a two-year degree at community college (which most people at this school would sneer at) and has been making well over six figures for years.

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  15. Simply telling people to go to college or get a trade is not very helpful information. I have always found that it's from people that really don't know about either and simply parrot others to fill in space for the answer. It depends on where you want to go in life, what your interests are, what you're willing to do to achieve this, and how much value you find in the path leading to your career.

    For trades it really depends on your region in Canada and what you want to do. I, personally, wouldn't suggest going into a trade in Ontario myself as I have found the route to a trade very discouraging. Apart from colleges that are trying to sell you expensive unneeded programs (pre-trades) or simply the provincial apprenticeship offices passing the buck in regards to questions, the whole concept of a trade is almost lost in this province.

    Even if you do find an employer to get into a trade there is no guarantee you'll finish the hours needed. Many people will quote construction trades, but I'm really hesitant to suggest getting into one now as will those jobs still be around in the next few years so you can get the hours? Maybe a few years ago it would have been prudent as one could have joined a trade for construction of student complexes or housing, but now it's really a gamble imo.

    Plus even if you choose wisely in a trade that will be needed there can always be blind spots. Wage suppression is a major issue now, along with job creep. I speak with experience. If there is a trade in short supply wages will rise to attract potential workers, simple economics. But right now there are many employers that feel these wages are too high for tradesmen and will ask you to do your job plus additional duties. If you refuse you'll be laid off or fired. You can complain to the labour board, but in the end you'll still need to find a wage during the investigation and such. This really forces tradesmen into unions by fault of shit management. This in addition to very biased EI rules if you're laid off, in addition to parasite temp agencies, makes trades in Ontario not very attractive for some people.

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