IT Pilgrimage

A Journey From IT to Freedom

Your College Degree Does Not Make You Better Than Me

Posted by IT Pilgrim on June 16, 2008

Just a simple request this morning, hang on while I climb up on my soapbox, OK. Don’t act like your college degree makes you better than me, it doesn’t.

I get this a lot, usually from some insecure person who isn’t willing to work as hard as I am. I know, I am stereotyping, but it happens often enough that I have made my own stereotype for it. It all started on Wednesday morning …

An ex-coworker came over, and he was angry because he didn’t get a promotion. The reason he came over to me, was because I had floated through that position about a year ago. I thought he was asking advice, but he wasn’t. Right before he stormed away, I get the words, “You never should have had that position, you didnt deserve it, and I do. ” “What?!” I sputtered at him. He looks back over his shoulder, down his nose at me, and says it, ” I have a college degree and you don’t.” I couldn’t help it, I laughed, I laughed until I was in danger of falling out of my chair and rolling on the floor Homer Simpson style. His degree …wait for it … art history.

So, you’ll have to excuse the soapbox, but how does that make him better for an IT position? I couldn’t help it, being the shy, demure girl that I am, I had to ask, why that made him better for that job than me. His response honestly shocked me, that it showed he was a more balanced and committed person, that a college degree implies a more advanced level of learning and social skills. What?! Really now, you’re kidding, right?

Alas, no, he was not joking. If this was the first time I had seen this attitude, it probably would not have bothered me so much. Over the years, I have made it a habit of asking, what is your degree in? I often find people in IT with anything from art degrees, to theater and music degrees. From this I have found that some people think that their having acquired a degree makes them better. Why is that? Why is it that going to Frat parties while I was working make them a better person?

I wont beat the dead animal anymore here, but i firmly stand by this … Getting a college degree does not make you a better person. If you don’t know what you want to do, don’t waste your money, just get a job. Later in life, when people try to rub it in your face, just smile, and ask them what their degree is in.

Photo Credit: Mike Raybourne

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3 Responses to “Your College Degree Does Not Make You Better Than Me”

  1. christinegilbert said

    Ha! This post made me laugh. It reminds me of the person I supervised that had a bent nose because they had a masters and everyone was getting promoted around him. A masters in sports management. Not to disparage the field, but it hardly related to software development (my field). I heard about an article recently… I can’t remember where… that said it wasn’t college that prepared your for the world, it was intelligence. People wrongly assume it’s college, only because intelligent people typically go that route. But an intelligent person without a degree will still do just as well in the world.

  2. IT Pilgrim said

    @Christine, thanks. Glad I could brighten up your day. I like to think its our intelligence that moves us through the world, but I don’t have a degree in it. šŸ˜‰

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