Give Me a Job Or I’ll Sue

CNBC ran with a story about Trina Thompson who is suing Monroe College for her tuition money because she was unable to find a job after graduating.

Sentiment has been split between supporting her view that colleges over-advertise their ability to retain employment for graduates and the view that she is just lazy and whining. My personal view is that the answer is somewhere in between. Colleges and University spend a great deal of time and money to gain corporate sponsorship so that employers will hire on campus. I don’t think anyone would dispute the fact that colleges with better employment prospects will attract much more interest from candidates. Those individuals that wax philosophically about the value of an education, etc. I believe are living in the past, quality education is more or less free these days with the internet. Harvard and MIT amongst many others have put numerous hours of lectures online available for free. You can google ‘Dispersion Trading’ or search SSRN for the latest practical advice on a strategy once only available to those in large Investment Banks and Hedge Funds. University is therefore simply an opportunity to network, develop a pedigree, and for job selection.

Therefore I actually sympathize a great deal with Trina on one level. I would love to get my college tuition money back, student loans have been an anchor on my existence from the minute I graduated. Or at least I have used it as an excuse if you follow the other side of the argument.

The interesting thing about all this should be an honest discussion of the worth of higher education in the future and primarily the costs associated with it. If I were to be in a hiring position, I would hope that I decipher the quality of an applicant by the experience and accomplishments they posses as opposed to their degree or pedigree. Anecodotal evidence from friends show that Ivy League MBAs live up to their reputation of being arrogant and not much more effective then an alternate with relevant experience. Weight in with your thoughts!

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~ by largecaptrader on August 7, 2009.

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