I recently had a visit from my father Bruce, and my Uncle Ray. My father is currently a manager of planning, and my Uncle Ray was involved in founding a software engineering firm (the details of which are over my head).
Ray is retired now and spends some of his time researching astronomy. he has been featured in the local news, around his current abode in the Port Rowan area, as an amateur astronomer of some note.
The conversations which the three of us have are often very interesting and informed as a result of both my father and uncle’s varied backgrounds and life experiences. I described to my uncle an idea I had to start a multi-media business, in which I would provide writing, website design, video and audio editing alongside other services.
I’ve had some difficulty finding work which I can stand doing, and that will provide me with some sort of future that isn’t as bleak as scrubbing toilets for all eternity (not that there’s anything wrong with doing that as a living, aside from the smells).
I thought starting a business would provide me with an opportunity to continually learn new skills as required and grant me the ability to work from anywhere; however, starting a business is not a walk in the park and I have not always had a reputation for extreme self discipline, dependability, and excellence in co-worker/employer relations. I’ve left employers holding their balls when I impulsively quit to seek out a living I can actually believe in.
Writing this honestly about my work-life blunders may be the career equivalent of chopping my leg off at the knee, but I think there are several people in similar circumstances who need relating to, if not guidance.
Yes, we the job quitters, the passionate, and misguided unemployed need to stick together to find solutions which can place us on the path to success (whatever that may mean for each individual).
Our current society caters to the success of few at the expense of many. Hundreds are trained for jobs which have limited opportunities. A person who is highly skilled at an occupation is over-looked for a position, because they were self taught. Employers claim to practice ‘equal opportunity’ hiring but tend to pick applicants who have spent vast amounts of money on formal training which is not readily accessible to the poor.
A person could theoretically spend everyday researching a given subject at the local library for forty years, showing a great deal of hard work and determination, only to lose heart because employers seek applicants based on accredited forms of education. The result of this is, in essence, an invalidation of any learning that does not have an associated price tag.
What happens to the students who’ve have gone in to debt pursuing a degree for which there is limited real-world opportunity? The student, unable to find work in their field, may default on paying off their loans, with poor credit going back to school becomes a remote goal for the distant future.
The beneficiaries of our educational system are the colleges, the universities, the government run education boards, and of course the agencies which provide student loans. Companies, which can pay minimum wages to struggling graduates, also benefit indirectly.
How do we change an education system which is so entrenched in our society, our politics, and our economics? Return for the answer in my next article “Free Education for All, or Not” coming very soon.