Higher education (question mark)

There is a fair bit of discussion on the internet about the futility of doctoral degrees.  The Economist ran “The disposable academic: Why doing a PhD is often a waste of time” in December 2010, followed by my response (as well as the heartfelt responses of others) in January 2011.  The Nation joined the conversation with “Faulty Towers: The Crisis in Higher Education” in May 2011.  They’re even making a movie about the tragicomedy that is grad school based on the amazing webcomic Piled Higher and Deeper.

Many question the pursuit of higher learning during a period jokingly referred to as The Great Recession.  However, if you have the support of your family, friends, and peers (academically or professionally), anything is possible!  You can probably get pretty far on your own, too, but I like doing things with the crowd.

There was an article recently in the Atlantic City News, which I can’t seem to locate online, that talked about how people have drastically diversified their skill sets due to the recent economic climate.  CEOs and engineers have scrapbooking, Avon, or Tupperware business ventures on the side, grad students take up contract teaching outside of their universities, freelance photography, editing, and webcomics are all the rage.  The internet has made these activities easier to pursue than ever before.  It’s kind of nice to have a change of pace, to have the freedom to switch from one activity to another.  Granted, not all callings and occupations have this flexibility and freedom, but while I am in grad school, I intend to make the most of the options I do have.

All that to say, I agree with the caterpillar – hobbies might save us, and that’s why I have my Monday, Wednesday, Friday blog and I’m going to take a class to become an aggregate specialist.  Whoo!  It’s gonna ROCK.  (Get it?)

One may question their pursuit of higher learning during a period jokingly referred to as The Great Recession.  However, if you have the support of your family, friends, and peers (academically or professionally), anything is possible!  You can probably get pretty far on your own, too, but I like doing things with the crowd.

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