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Do you think that doing a degree, should be for the aim of working in that related area? Or could just be for the fun an enjoyment of it ?

(56 Posts)
Lardlizard Wed 06-Mar-19 15:02:34

Say like dancing or wildlife conservation or something arty

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius Thu 07-Mar-19 11:55:37

Apologies, @Lardlizard - I read things into your post that weren't there.

"I personally think it’s a shame kids are steered towards what pays the most."

I agree with this. When our three dses were looking at university, we encouraged them to choose subjects they felt they had passion for - one went for Law, another for Applied Maths, and the third started doing a degree in Geography, but has switched to Urban Development. Two of the three have graduated and are working now - the lawyer is working as a quantity surveyor, so his degree is helping him with the contract side of his job - but it definitely isn't a logical career progression from a law degree. The second is teaching maths, so that is a direct route from his degree, and the third hasn't graduated yet, but his appears, on the surface, to be the most vocational degree of the three of them.

And then there's my sister, who read Music, and became an accountant. Her degree hasn't really had any influence over her career, but music is her passion outside work, and brings her immense joy.

yearinyearout Thu 07-Mar-19 12:00:55

I think it's dependent on your situation. Whilst I agree that it's more a tax on education than a debt, with the costs involved these days I probably wouldn't have encouraged my DC to do a degree just for fun. Even with the loans it has ended up costing us a lot of money to top them up with rent etc, which is fine as they've both worked hard and their degree will benefit their careers. If they'd wanted to go to uni simply to arse about drinking I wouldn't have been so happy to fund it. If you have the money to fund it yourself that's a different story, crack on.

NicoAndTheNiners Thu 07-Mar-19 12:13:58

Well I must admit I breathed a sigh of relief when dd said she wanted to study architecture. Hopefully it will lead to a career/job. More so than a geography/history/English degree.

Though yes I totally get that those sort of degrees can open doors to jobs/careers even if they don't utilise the actual degree. I totally agree that education is worth it for the skills it teaches people, critical thinking, communication, research, etc.

When I retire I'm planning on going back to uni to do a history degree for my own enjoyment safe in the knowledge I will never have to pay the tuition fees back!

AllesAusLiebe Thu 07-Mar-19 13:17:23

bookmum08 to me, your username suggested that you may be well read therefore I found it difficult to reckon with your argument that university was the domain of the ‘idle rich’. Your username suggests that you value reading and therefore education.

I work in academia and hate the fee system with an absolute passion, but what I hate more is the notion that as an institution, we have a responsibility to churn out automatons ripe for the workplace because that’s the only value in having a degree.

bookmum08 Thu 07-Mar-19 18:54:32

Alles I do value education. There are so many things I would love to learn and experience because I 'enjoy' the subject but the cost is just too much.
If you have a spare £30 000 to go to uni without having a specific goal then fine (that's what I meant by 'idle rich' - maybe I was a bit extreme there) but if you don't have the money then a debt that big hanging over your head is terrifying. While we have people paying so much for 3 years of being at uni to end up at the bottom of a low paid job as they weren't aiming for a specific goal it just seems daft. So many people are relying on loans - the governments money - and most will end up not being paid off. I would rather the government uses that money for housing, proper apprentiships and training schemes and money available for those who go to uni for something that will lead to an actual job (ie Doctor). Of course we need people to learn history and culture and politics etc so we have a society that has this knowledge. This is important. But as a country we simply cannot afford to 'loan' someone such a massive amount so they can study a random subject that they think 'that might be fun' because they feel they have to go to uni because still have no clue what they want to be /do in life.

TwoRoundabouts Thu 07-Mar-19 19:20:26

The main issue I see now is pupils particularly poorer ones are encouraged by schools to just do a degree without thinking what type of job they can get from doing the subject. They are frequently encouraged to do subjects where you need to have parents who can support you afterwards if you want to have a career in the area.

Myself and a few of my peers were actually told by a teacher in each of our schools not to do certain degrees due to the limited career options arising from the subjects. I think in mine and one of my friends' cases the teacher who did this found we were good in more than one area and pushed us towards the better paid area. (We went to different schools in different areas of England.)

So while I think people can do any degree, people need to be aware of how they may be limiting the careers they can go into by doing a particular subject.

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