University is absolutely useless, go travel instead.

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angelinahx
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I want to preface this by saying that this is not for everybody. If you have your heart set on working in medicine, if you want to become an engineer and aid the current climate crisis, if your job requires extreme specialist training, please ignore my advice and go to university. It'll be expensive and time-consuming but it will be worth it.

But if you are 18 years old. Or 19 years old. And you're not sure exactly what you want to do with your life or if you are going to study anything that isn't STEM, I'm here to tell you that you are actively wasting your time and spending money on something which has no practical value.

We are facing a world of complete political, environmental and economic instability. We have not seen this level of instability in over a century and the entire global economic system is changing with it. And it is primarily our generation which will suffer the long-term consequences of what’s happening right now. And I’m sorry - I’m so sorry, I just don’t see the purpose in spending the most valuable years of our lives (the years when we are supposed to truly establish ourselves as adults) going to university to study anything that has no real practical value. You have no idea if what you are going to university for is even going to be in demand in two years. In five years. If you’ve learnt anything at all from this year, it should have been that nothing is guaranteed. You are absolutely not guaranteed a job as you were 15 or 20 years ago when you graduate. If you’re still starting university in 2020 despite everything that’s going on you literally lack the ability to think for yourself, there is no way around it.

This has been the case for a long time - you can simply look at Millennials and see to what extent a university degree has been fundamentally useless (underemployment has been an issue for a long time, 58% of graduates worked in non-graduate jobs in 2016) but this is increasingly becoming the norm because of the unstable economic climate.

Travelling is unsafe right now but I would still strongly recommend people on the fence to take a year or two or three out. To find a job, to save money, and then go travelling the world in 2021 when things calm down. Gain actual, practical understanding of the aftermaths of this crisis on real people, find your true purpose and learn what you love and want to do when you’re young. I’ve been around half the continent and I cannot tell you how many times adults have told me they wished they did what I did when they were young. How they’re too tied down with a job they don’t love now and kids and how they had the “same uni experience” as everyone else which basically just consists of becoming independent and drunk at the same time - which, by the way, you can literally do anywhere in the world. Go volunteering to help build up the impact of the Coronavirus crisis in developing countries. Find what you truly love instead of wasting precious time in a classroom studying a humanities subject and if you’re that passionate about your subject then buy books. Teach yourself. The Internet is full of subject information about whatever it is you want to learn.

Just find your own individual passion and then pursue it.
Last edited by angelinahx; 1 month ago
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indialily
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I travelled to Africa on my own after uni, here is a post all about my experience: https://www.indialilyblogs.com/post/...-a-21-year-old
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ByEeek
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University is what you make of it. And even doing a none STEM subject has it's merits. If you are an employer looking to whittle 100 identical applications down to 12, academic attainment is the quickest method.

Oh - and student loans aren't a loan. They are a very generous progressive tax with bad PR.

I agree that travellibg first is the best tack if you are unsure. Either that or just get a job for a bit. There is plenty of work going if you are flexible and imaginitive.
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angelinahx
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(Original post by ByEeek)
University is what you make of it. And even doing a none STEM subject has it's merits. If you are an employer looking to whittle 100 identical applications down to 12, academic attainment is the quickest method.

Oh - and student loans aren't a loan. They are a very generous progressive tax with bad PR.

I agree that travellibg first is the best tack if you are unsure. Either that or just get a job for a bit. There is plenty of work going if you are flexible and imaginitive.
A university degree in a non-STEM subject lacks complete practical value. This has been true for years and this is even more relevant because we are in the midst of an intense economic recession. If you are going to university for a humanities degree this year you simply aren't capable of thinking creatively or reflecting in any deep sense about your future.

Employers look at experience. They want somebody capable of doing the job. If Person A has spent 3 years working in Guatemala as a freelance journalist with their own blog and Person B has a Media Studies degree from Hull and no experience person A will get the job. Also, we're in the midst of a potential economic depression. Nobody is guaranteed a job anymore regardless whether you have a degree or not and you're wasting time.

And - yes, they are a loan and yes, you do pay them back through your salary. 50+% of graduates work in jobs you don't need a degree for and their coworkers who didn't go to uni will get more cash out each month because they're still paying off £50k off wasted debt.
Last edited by angelinahx; 1 month ago
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SportScience98
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(Original post by ByEeek)
University is what you make of it. And even doing a none STEM subject has it's merits. If you are an employer looking to whittle 100 identical applications down to 12, academic attainment is the quickest method.

Oh - and student loans aren't a loan. They are a very generous progressive tax with bad PR.

I agree that travellibg first is the best tack if you are unsure. Either that or just get a job for a bit. There is plenty of work going if you are flexible and imaginitive.
Yeah, exactly. I disagree with OP on the matter. Ultimately, its about what you do with the degree (STEM or NOT) than what the actual degree is. If you can't find work in your niche, then its your own damn fault and you should take responsibility. My degree has opened me up to many opportunities (including to study Exercise Physiology at masters level) although I am in STEM and wish to produce academic research.
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999tigger
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(Original post by angelinahx)
A university degree in a non-STEM subject lacks complete practical value. This has been true for years and this is even more relevant because we are in the midst of an intense economic recession. If you are going to university for a humanities degree this year you simply aren't capable of thinking creatively or reflecting in any deep sense about your future.

Employers look at experience. They want somebody capable of doing the job. If Person A has spent 3 years working in Guatemala as a freelance journalist with my own blog and Person B haS a Media Studies degree from Hull and no experience person A will get the job. Also, we're in the midst of a potential economic depression. Nobody is guaranteed a job anymore regardless whether you have a degree or not and you're wasting time.

And - yes, they are a loan and yes, you do pay them back through your salary. 50+% of graduates work in jobs you don't need a degree for and their coworkers who didn't go to uni will get more cash out each month because they're still paying off £50k off wasted debt.
So from what perspective are you saying this?
You have graduated?
You are a stem/ non stem graduate?
With a career?

They are quasi loans.

Why is the only non stem subject media studies?

You are sounding a bit bitter.

You seem to have nailed kit though stem master race everyone else gibbering idiots who know nothing.
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ajj2000
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You get government money to go to university. You don't to go travelling. How are you funding this?
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SportScience98
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(Original post by 999tigger)
So from what perspective are you saying this?
You have graduated?
You are a stem/ non stem graduate?
With a career?

They are quasi loans.

Why is the only non stem subject media studies?

You are sounding a bit bitter.

You seem to have nailed kit though stem master race everyone else gibbering idiots who know nothing.
Yup, last time I checked - law and economics are high in demand degrees. It seems like she has no idea what she is talking about on the matter. The random generalisations tell it all. 9% of your wages above 25k? That's only £500 a year for 5k above 25k, its bloody nothing! its literally a tax
Last edited by SportScience98; 1 month ago
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username3895014
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How do you expect someone to travel and “find themselves” but also gain experience? To fund travels you have to work, to work you need experience (and skills which can all be gained through a degree. Transferable skills etc.)
Last edited by username3895014; 1 month ago
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DiddyDec
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As someone who works in professional services without a degree I can tell you for a fact that it has only ever held me back.
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angelinahx
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(Original post by 999tigger)
So from what perspective are you saying this?
You have graduated?
You are a stem/ non stem graduate?
With a career?

They are quasi loans.

Why is the only non stem subject media studies?

You are sounding a bit bitter.

You seem to have nailed kit though stem master race everyone else gibbering idiots who know nothing.
I'm neither one of those things.

They are loans. You pay them back through your salary. If I do not go to university and you go to university and we end up in the same position (which is statistically likely to happen) I get more money than you each month.

You can use any subject you want. My point is that you can get more valuable experience outside of uni.

It's not meant to sound bitter at all, I pity a lot of young people because they're not being told to think critically about their future. School fosters an environment which devalues critical and independent thinking because it teaches you to essentially conform academically in order to get the best grades. This is merely reinforced through university as being the "best" option when in reality, it is a waste of time.
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StriderHort
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(Original post by Wooord)
How do you expect someone to travel and “find themselves” but also gain experience? To fund travels you have to work, to work you need experience
I was kind of hoping they wouldn't be allowed to come back, for safety.
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pepsimaxcherry
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lol no.

just because a degree isn’t STEM, does not make it useless.

university is about more than getting a degree. you’ll receive experience, qualifications and years to find yourself. you get to explore the subject you’re passionate about and learn what it’s like to live away from home and the opportunities you can achieve after graduation.

Everyone is different and everyone is going to go down a different path. Travelling isn’t for everyone just like uni isn’t for everyone.

Stop telling people that their choices aren’t valid because they don’t match your personal beliefs
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angelinahx
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(Original post by DiddyDec)
As someone who works in professional services without a degree I can tell you for a fact that it has only ever held me back.
Using that anecdotal evidence, I could equally tell you that there are a number of successful people who never went to university and that there is also a large portion of graduates who regret going to university at all. It means nothing.
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DiddyDec
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(Original post by angelinahx)
Using that anecdotal evidence, I could equally tell you that there are a number of successful people who never went to university and that there is also a large portion of graduates who regret going to university at all. It means nothing.
I was just sharing my personal experience, there is no need to be so rude and aggressive.
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SportScience98
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(Original post by angelinahx)
It's not meant to sound bitter at all, I pity a lot of young people because they're not being told to think critically about their future. School fosters an environment which devalues critical and independent thinking because it teaches you to essentially conform academically in order to get the best grades. This is merely reinforced through university as being the "best" option when in reality, it is a waste of time.
That is definitely a lie. Universities teach critical thinking to undergraduate students. so I'm not sure where you get this 'conform academically' narrative from.

You seem quite bitter, maybe you couldn't get into university to begin with so envy may play a part in exposing your lack of understanding on the matter. Either way, not our problem.
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pepsimaxcherry
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(Original post by angelinahx)
Using that anecdotal evidence, I could equally tell you that there are a number of successful people who never went to university and that there is also a large portion of graduates who regret going to university at all. It means nothing.
But there’s also lots of people who regret not going to uni? So what is your point? Your using your personal beliefs to undermine those who went to university. This whole thread is pointless...
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SportScience98
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(Original post by DiddyDec)
I was just sharing my personal experience, there is no need to be so rude and aggressive.
and they claim to have sufficient critical thinking skills LMAO
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MalcolmX
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I did a CS degree and I'm now a software developer earning a very comfortable income. Without the degree, it'd be very unlikely I'd be able to get started in software development professionally.
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angelinahx
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(Original post by Wooord)
How do you expect someone to travel and “find themselves” but also gain experience? To fund travels you have to work, to work you need experience
There are ways to literally earn money whilst travelling. I have done it myself and I know people who have done it, it's not hard. Just get a job and save. There are thousands of 20-somethings doing this each year.
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