Silly Surveys: Employment Edition

A new survey has results which are unsurprising but rather useless. Forbes reports:

More than one-third of the 444 recent graduates who responded said if they had a do-over, they would have selected majors that connect directly to specific jobs, like nursing or social work.

It’s useless to ask about benefits without costs. Sure, if asked I might say that I would have preferred to be President, but one of the reasons I’m not is because of the sacrifices and effort involved. I’m sure many students would have loved to be hotshot computer scientists, but majors like those are a lot of work. That’s one reason their graduates are in demand.

Further, this focus on practicality is a disheartening trend. Predicting the jobs of the future is really hard work and they might not be there when you expect them to. Who was training to be a web-designer in 1992? A real education shouldn’t prepare you for one job, it should train you for no specific job … and therefore the best jobs. We should be educating our elite students to create the jobs of the future and adapt to them when they come. The only thing you can rely on is your ability to handle whatever comes your way. That’s what the focus of education should be.

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