college

Tech questions that don't fit above forums

Moderator: Team

rce4csh
Pro
Pro
Posts: 204
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 11:24 pm

Re: college

Post by rce4csh » Thu Dec 29, 2011 11:09 am

Tell you what I told my son who is in his second year of college...."School is now your job and your grades (effort in school) are your paycheck! Work as hard as I do to be well paid and spend it wisely!".......He maintains 3.78 GPA living on his own with no assitance from me. He spends his "paycheck" to furher opportunites in school like admission into the Dean's business school after only two semesters of attendence. There are opportunitys for young people in school that don't come along so readily out of school especially these days. With regard to cost of schooling, all I can say is maximize your FAFSA score so that you can avail yourself of every financial opportunity available to you. Also look for the hidden gems in scholarship possibilities. For example, my son won a five thousand dollar scholarship this year from a local gun club. He spent six hours writing a great essay to do so. $5000.00 for six hours of his best effort, better money than I ever made by working.

Dellinger
Member
Member
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 11:00 pm
Location: Portland, OR

Re: college

Post by Dellinger » Thu Jan 05, 2012 6:07 pm

I'll preface my post with my back ground- short form...

I'm 31, I've had 4 career changes in less than 10 years. I graduated w/ a BS in Marketing/ Buisness, Minor in Communications. I interned with a sports marketing company in Charlotte, NC, and had a job lined up with them after I would graduate. We worked with Rockingham (when it was still on the Winston circuit) Lowes Motor Speedway, RCR, Conagra Foods, Food Lion, Texas Pete, Van Camps Beans, etc... almost like a sponsorship broker in a way. Gratuated May '02, economy was crap due to Sept. 11th happening in Fall of '01. Interviewed with a few marketing firms in Mooresville. Nada. Went to a temp agency, placed in mortgages for one of the big- 5 banks. Worked for a few big banks in Charlotte until my banking career ended in mid-'07 from sub-prime fall out. Looked for six months, took an internship at a public-policy think tank in D.C. Internship ran out but I got another job, contract, for another 501 (c3) in D.C. That ran out after a year (2009). Then looked for year...nada. I'll get to 'current' status in a minute.

What I've learned... in order of importance (my opinion)-

1-Make sure they find their passion. Let's say it's playing baseball. If the kid isn't going Pro, he/ she can still be involved in thousands of ways via sports medicine, media PR, back office work, field maitenance, whatever. Just make sure they FIND that passion. You'll have to help and be involved. My parents weren't... they told me, "Do what you wanna do...," Well, hell, what does a 17 year old know about 'what they want to do' for the next 40 years? If you see things they like, then ask some questions about it. Then get involved and help them explore it. Say it's baseball... call some local minor league teams. Schedule a visit to the park. Ask about internships. Something, just don't let them flounder through this process. They know NOTHING about the world and you do. Share your knowledge.

2-College is not for everyone. Even in this down economy, I've had more interviews for machining jobs in the past 6 months than I ever from banks in a year of looking. (And that's 6 months of community college training vs. 6 years of real work in mortgage closing, processing, underwriting, and managements experience at a bank! I think the U.S. in now feeling the effects of "everone needs college education" and they aren't good.) You and your kid will "know" if regular college is for them. And even if they are 'wrong', they can always go back at any time. Working for a few years in the real world often changes people, lol. Just make sure they don't get too far in debt because then there is "no going back."

3-If they decided to go for a degree, as has been said, first two years at community college is ideal. It's cheaper, local, and it'll have the same classes as the 4 year schools.

4-Make sure they have a part-time job. You can also get this as a 'work-study' at college where it can be credited for books/tuition/room and board (at the 4-years schools)

5-If they are partying and drinking their faces-off at a 4-year. Make sure they make the MOST of this (in a good way.) Life, I've learned, is more about "who" you know than "what" you know (in a non-technical field anyway.) If they are majoring in Business, then make sure they join a fraternity. I didn't and the kids I do keep in contact with who were... make probably a $50K (on average) more than I did at my max salary. They also kept their jobs a big financial firms when I lost mine. Also, make sure they keep good relationships with every 'geek' and 'nerd' and 'fat kid' along the way because you never know when those people are gonna turn out to be a foot-in-the-door to something big career-wise. Your offspring should also keep in touch with their friends/professors/whomever. It's hard to go asking for career help when you haven't spoken to them in a year.

To finish up, I couldn't find work from '09-'10. I got married and moved. My wife's an employeed civil engineer so I'm blessed to be able to live, eat, and go back to my local community college to acquire some technical experience/ education. I'm taking machining.

I messed up because I found my passion during my high school senior summer working on my '67 Chevelle with my father. It was too late then and I had to be "the first one in the family with a college education". I'm jaded about it. Just a 'hoop to jump through'. I think college is good for teachers, lawyers, doctors, accountants, scientists, economics, and engineers...anything else, nah.

Best of luck OP.
I'm here to learn, thanks in advance for all who respond.

Engguy
Guru
Guru
Posts: 1365
Joined: Thu Jun 01, 2006 9:51 pm

Re: college

Post by Engguy » Sat Jun 30, 2012 11:30 pm

Mr Bill Gates does not have a degree. Neither does the very smart guy he hired to write the first iteration of Word.

The problem with any job anyone thinks they want to do, is if you are working for someone else you may not get to do what you really want to do.
And if you have a better way to do the job, and your boss wants it done a certain way you have to do it his way.
The Chevelle and that is what you'd like to do? Not if you had to do it day in and day out doing brakes, heater cores, electric seat adjusters, power windows, exhaust systems, or what ever, its not always some supposed fun thing to do, and you can't just enjoy it, you have to bust buns to get it done in time.

Greenlight
Pro
Pro
Posts: 381
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2005 10:37 pm

Re: college

Post by Greenlight » Tue Jul 10, 2012 12:06 am

We can talk about who has a degree and is not working and who doesn't have a degree (Bill Gates) and is a billionaire. There are exceptions to every rule.

Here is the government report on wages based on occupation. It's pretty easy to determine, in most cases, which occupation requires a college degree and which doesn't.
The real data begins on page 10 of this report.
http://www.bls.gov/news.release/archive ... 272012.pdf

And here is the unemployment % vs. occupation.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 ... 20440.html

25 college majors with the lowest unemployment rate.
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505145_162- ... ent-rates/

Fastest growing occupations thru 2020.
http://www.bls.gov/emp/ep_table_103.htm

My advice is to find something you are passionate about (whether it requires a degree or not), that generally pays well and has a bright future, and "hit it" at full speed.
Project Greenlight

leo fiebiger
New Member
New Member
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:25 pm

Re: college

Post by leo fiebiger » Mon Aug 13, 2012 11:19 pm

You do not just go to college to make more money. You do it to become a broader based
person. It does not make you smarter....but it can give you more options as you go.
I strongly believe in work study programs because the is a big difference between the
preparation for a field and doing that kind of work every day. Time spent in a given
field is well spent for determining if this is what you want to do. There is nothing wrong
with getting a four year degree in six years....or more....

User avatar
loudandproud
Pro
Pro
Posts: 201
Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2012 8:35 pm
Location: Mechanicsburg, PA

Re: college

Post by loudandproud » Sun Aug 19, 2012 9:54 pm

RednGold86Z wrote:"Engineers" need a BS at minimum to get into the door anywhere.
A highschool "B" student shouldn't bother with the difficult engineering programs. And, if they're smart, but don't have "the knack" - they'll be brushed aside quickly (or promoted to managers ;-).


Just a heads up..

I was a B and C student all the way through highschool.
I Got into a branch campus of Penn State my freshman year and got my ass kicked... then I got my shit together.

I graduate this December with a degree in ME. I made dean's list my last six semesters at main campus.
I'll return next spring for my masters.

The point is... just because a kid didn't do that well in high school, it doesn't mean that he wont perform well in college.

That said, I complete agree with your "knack" statement.

Heck... i know 3.95 GPA ME students that just dont "get it". Its really sad to see. They are very intellegent, but they are going to have a very tough time in the real world.
"Buying parts I dont need, with money that I dont have, to impress people that I dont know".

user-3597028

Re: college

Post by user-3597028 » Wed Oct 17, 2012 2:21 am

I think it's important for a kid to learn a trade of some sort, regardless of what their ultimate college goal is. This is also their "plan B" so they don't end up delivering pizzas if the economy does a flip again. When I was in high school, you could learn an honest trade there. We had auto, machine, wood, electric, welding and other hands-on shop classes that we could take. They do not have that luxury now in many schools, since the districts have focused everything around computers and technology. I have a high school friend who just took a job as a toolmaker. He said "I have not done this since high school", and he sure is glad that he learned it. Now, we graduated over 25 years ago and this stuff was way more "important" then, but there is still a market for this experience.

For the OP, as far as a kid today...well, maybe a year at a tech-college to get accustomed to the "college-routine" while learning something that has a life-long value is a good start. The secondary benefit is, a kid will be able to get a job actually making decent money to contribute to their further education. Tell him, I'll pay for 1-2 years of tech school and then 1/2 of whatever you decide to do for college after that. If some of their own money is at stake, they will have a much better chance of taking it seriously, and choosing wisely when it comes to future schools. Suddenly, community college may seem like a better idea instead of Yale...Even if you do plan to pay for it all when it's said and done, it will perpetuate better decisions now. Just don't give him his money back till after he graduates :) it would be like a forced savings plan, don't tell him till after the fact though.

I have a friend, with a daughter that is like 20 now. She does not have much of an opportunity to get a college education with her family's financial situation. This said, she wants to be a doctor. So, while she was in 11th-12th grade, she started taking classes at the tech college through high school in cooking and restaraunt work. Now that she is out of school, she is continuing her degree as a gourmet chef, through grants, student loans and a scholarship. Her plan is to put herself through medical school, while working as a chef, making good money. She doesn't care if it takes 15 years either. She will do it too, she has the drive and motivation. She is a remarkable young lady with real focus.

a little off-topic, but, all of that said, the importance of English, spelling and punctuation can't be over emphasized. With the social media and so many things being done on-line, not looking like an illiterate person is of paramount importance. There is nothing worse than someone trying to come across as smart while not being able to structure a sentence and punctuate it correctly. Hell, I see it on forums all the time. I won't even buy something online if I see that the seller writes like a fifth grader. In a nutshell, if kids are lacking in that area, work on that more than anything. It's what people see first these days. You know what they say about first impressions:)

user-3597028

Re: college

Post by user-3597028 » Wed Oct 17, 2012 2:24 am

loudandproud wrote:
RednGold86Z wrote:"Engineers" need a BS at minimum to get into the door anywhere.
A highschool "B" student shouldn't bother with the difficult engineering programs. And, if they're smart, but don't have "the knack" - they'll be brushed aside quickly (or promoted to managers ;-).


Just a heads up..

I was a B and C student all the way through highschool.
I Got into a branch campus of Penn State my freshman year and got my ass kicked... then I got my shit together.

I graduate this December with a degree in ME. I made dean's list my last six semesters at main campus.
I'll return next spring for my masters.

The point is... just because a kid didn't do that well in high school, it doesn't mean that he wont perform well in college.

That said, I complete agree with your "knack" statement.

Heck... i know 3.95 GPA ME students that just dont "get it". Its really sad to see. They are very intellegent, but they are going to have a very tough time in the real world.
Kudos, loudandproud, nice work. It's good to see a young man with drive, do well.

Monkeywrench
Member
Member
Posts: 125
Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:14 pm
Location: South NJ
Contact:

Re: college

Post by Monkeywrench » Thu Oct 18, 2012 4:49 pm

I went to a big university, struggled and failed out in my 4th year. The next year I took some classes at a community college to see if school was something I still wanted to do. Did pretty well, got accepted into a state school and have been doing great since. I'm near the top of my class, have my own funded research going on, and have made some really great connections. I have been lucky enough to also have real work experience in the field. At the moment, I'm applying to graduate schools for hydrology. Water is going be the biggest environmental issue in the next twenty years (you can't drink oil ).

If I went back to the other big university (a very good engineering program) now, I'd do great. Sometimes you need a kick in the ass. It was an expensive lesson, but worth it. I wasn't ready for college, and I don't think a lot of my friends who have already graduated were either.
-Bob

Dan Timberlake
Guru
Guru
Posts: 1347
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:10 pm

Re: college

Post by Dan Timberlake » Wed Feb 13, 2013 3:22 pm

My wife is far too comfortable wih debt, and insisted on sending our older daughter to a big name school for the first year, and when she slacked off and did badly, had her sign up for big loans to waste a second year at another big name school. Now at 28 she's married with 1.5 kids, just got a house, and has a pretty good paying job with a property management company. especially considering her lack of school.
Becky is still paying off her student loan. Far beyond a total waste.


We have been able to (barely) swing our younger daughter's resident tuition at U Mass. She likes math etc, and in the last half of her 4th year she has a 3.5 GPA. For reasons I do not understand she enrolled in the mech engineering program. Being a lady engineer is likely to give her an (unfair?) advantage getting hired lots of places when she graduates. She has interned 250 plus hours in a Military program at Lincoln lab, so depending on the military spending cuts that eventually kick in this year (2013) she likely qualifies for automatic placement some place in the government. I have to say that kind of security sounds pretty good to me right now, even if the jobs might be kind of bland.

A few of her male classmates have already landed jobs with Mobil starting at 100k$.

Warpspeed
Guru
Guru
Posts: 1249
Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2006 4:10 pm

Re: college

Post by Warpspeed » Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:31 pm

If you can afford to put your kids through college without going into debt, do it.

Second choice would be to postpone college for a few years, and let your kids either find a job or learn a trade.
The outcome of that can go several ways, depending on abilities and the motivation of the individual.
In the end, your kids have to find their own way in life anyway....

Someone that has a year or two of real world work experience, will be far more mature, will have a much better idea of what they want to do, and will value much more the opportunities a college education might provide.

Who knows, junior may have some hidden talents you never suspected that can make them very successful without a college degree.
A degree is not an assurance of anything these days, the whole thing can end up being a very expensive waste of time.
Cheers, Tony.

Post Reply