Is academia ruining your future?May 1, 2016 9:28 am Leave your thoughts
Many people believe that what they need in order to succeed is to ensure that they go to the best school, receive the top grades, attend a respectable university, obtain an impressive degree and they will receive the perfect job. While they are not entirely wrong, they are also only halfway there. The problem is that today many people are shunning their creativity and individual traits, in order to become the ideal academic. However, doing this may be limiting your opportunities for the future or closing doors entirely as to what you may choose to pursue as a career. Now, before all of the fed up students out there who may be reading this article go and decide to have bonfire with their textbooks, may it be said that academics are in fact important…they are just more desirable when paired with other traits.
Let us take Mark Zuckerberg the Founder of Facebook as an example. He began the well-known social networking platform from his dorm room at Harvard University before dropping out; today he is known as the youngest ever self-made billionaire. While many would choose to dismiss what happened to Zuckerberg as a simple fluke and probably label him as nothing more than an intelligent fool with a serious amount of luck, if we take away the fact that he dropped out of school (don’t even think about it!) and the billions he made, what we are left with is a combination of traits that are not all that crazy. What he had was an outstanding academic record, an insane amount of creativity and some impressive people skills to get people to invest in him as such a young age. Grades, skill, personality and a little bit intuition, this appears to be the magic combination for a lot of the successful people we hear about today.
The reasons we are able to have smartphones, social media and even the internet is because someone chose to embrace their creativity and risk not taking the trusted path. While this should by no means be taken as a reason to distrust the educational system, it should however be taken as a reason to look into building various aspects of your personality. Your academic achievements need to be supported by equally impressive character traits as employers today are looking for the complete package. A doctor no longer needs to just know his symptoms inside out, but know how to improvise when confronted with something new. Your teachers cannot rely on their PowerPoints when they must find a way to ensure that every student (despite their learning style) receives the knowledge they require. Think about it, imagine that you want to start your own business, you have had top grades all throughout your academic life and now have a very respectable degree. What you need first is an investable new idea, but you have only ever followed what others have suggested. You then need an investment to get started, but you have no people skills and find it hard to communicate with new people. Now you need the work ethic to keep that business running daily but have only ever done what you were told to do.
You are doing serious harm to your future prospects if you fail to ensure that you are developing yourself alongside your C.V. The two go hand-in-hand and each needs the other in order to give you the best chance possible. In the words of Maya Angelou, “Success is liking yourself, liking what you do and liking how you do it.”
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