Register FAQ / Rules Forum Spy Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Mac Community > Community Discussion

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Feb 26, 2013, 03:14 AM   #1
MusicEnthusiast
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
How much "college knowledge" might I actually use in my future career job?

Hi all!

I'm four months away from the golden day of graduation. It's been four intense, yet fulfilling years here at my university. I'm going to earn a BS in Atmospheric Sciences with a minor in Applied mathematics and Japanese. While I love the schoolwork I'm doing, I have a few noteworthy items to bring to the table.

For one, all my work in Atmospheric Sciences is pretty rudimentary. We technically always work in simplified, idealized "worlds" in which the atmosphere behaves in elementary physics. While this makes the math easier and the understanding of the physics possible, I am a little unsure how I'll feel once I graduate without knowing the "full story". With the proper training on-the-job, will it be enough for me to take on the role of a forecaster who will need to know the picky details of the atmosphere over a certain area?

Second, the various classes I am taking are over a broad range of interests among my classmates. There is the really basic climatology stuff. There's also instrument testing and observations (a class I'm taking right now, actually) that would appease hands-on lovers, and there's the nitty gritty dynamics classes that are just filled with derivations and math, in which a researcher would flourish among pages and pages of notes I take everyday. Don't get me wrong, it's amazing to take such diverse classes. However, will I know exactly what I want to do with all my knowledge? I would hate to put it all to waste over one job that utilizes maybe 1/50th of what I learned in school.

Finally, there's the minor aspect of it all. I decided to go for an applied mathematics minor because I was simply one class away from it (the others were required as prereqs for my major). Japanese is a passion of mine, and although I probably won't move to Japan, I love being able to converse in it from time to time. I'm rather curious here... how many of you guys actually use what you learned in your minors in your career jobs?

Ah, well that's it for me. Back to work on my 4th lab report of the quarter. Working ahead feels awesome, but I do need sleep, too. haha Comment away! Share your experiences!
__________________
"Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent." ~ Victor Hugo
Black iPad 4th Gen (32 GB WiFi)
MusicEnthusiast is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 03:22 AM   #2
Macman45
macrumors G5
 
Macman45's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
Well, the course you have chosen would be totally required, it's not like a degree in physiology or IT where you often know things already..Applied science and mathematics is highly specialised, and you will only get that knowledge from your degree.

I have never, ever used my degree for a specific job, having been self employed for most of my life. However, a University degree teaches you something else that you will use throughout your life whatever career you choose....It's a way of thinking, of analysing and resolving problems that a standard high school education can't deliver. This stays with you through life, and I know I would not have certain skills had I not attained my degree, mixed with others in academia etc. Whatever you choose, you have certainly not wasted your time. Good luck with your future career path.
__________________
..That's All Folks
Macman45 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 11:11 AM   #3
Tomorrow
macrumors 603
 
Tomorrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Always a day away
Quote:
Originally Posted by MusicEnthusiast View Post
With the proper training on-the-job, will it be enough for me to take on the role of a forecaster who will need to know the picky details of the atmosphere over a certain area?
IMO, the purpose of a college education is to give you enough background to understand your on-the-job training. Sounds to me like you're going about this the right way, and with realistic expectations.

As I was approaching my graduation date (mechanical engineering), I kept panicking because I felt like I didn't really know anything. Turns out I was right - but even though I didn't know how to do the job when I got started after graduation, I had enough of a background to understand what was being taught to me.

There's no substitute for experience. Your education can help you absorb that experience much easier and much faster.
__________________
I would scream just to be heard, as if yelling at the stars - I was bleeding just to feel.
You would never say a word, kept me reaching in the dark - always something to conceal.
Tomorrow is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 11:28 AM   #4
maxosx
macrumors 68020
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Southern California
The first hurtle after graduation is getting the interview, and doing well enough to be called back for an interview in front of the decision makers that will either send you packing, or grant you a job opportunity.

Therefore as every year ticks off, more and more job seekers become your competition. The basic educational prerequisites are raised, just to simply qualify you for an interview.

Completing college, obtaining a Masters or Doctorate are the bare bones requirements if you seek a high paying position at the earliest part of your career. Once you enter the work force, moving up at a brisk pace is extremely challenging no matter your intellect. Therefore the higher you start, the better your chances are.

Otherwise your in for a long bumpy ride. Decades of hard work with mediocre wages.

The greatest gift I ever received was my parents relentlessly reminding & convincing me of the crucial need for the highest level of educational credentials.
maxosx is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 11:54 AM   #5
Squilly
macrumors 68020
 
Squilly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: PA
I am a freshman in college now. I'm thinking the same thing, even though I haven't "dug deep" in any major yet.
__________________
iPhone 5s 16gb Space Gray Sprint
Squilly is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 08:24 PM   #6
mobilehaathi
macrumors 601
 
mobilehaathi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Bay Area, CA
Quote:
Originally Posted by MusicEnthusiast View Post
However, will I know exactly what I want to do with all my knowledge?
I don't know, will you? Sounds like the answer is no at the moment.
__________________
The true way is along a rope that is not spanned high in the air, but only just above the ground. It seems intended more to cause stumbling than to be walked along.
mobilehaathi is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:13 PM   #7
184550
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2008
College, at least undergrad, isn't really about gaining any valuable knowledge. It's more about proving to potential employers that you are able to function somewhat successfully in the world and aren't completely stupid or incapable of learning new things. Anything that will actually be applicable in a future career or profession will either be learned on the job or in grad school.
184550 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:18 PM   #8
Digital Skunk
macrumors 604
 
Digital Skunk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: In my imagination
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanMuir View Post
College, at least undergrad, isn't really about gaining any valuable knowledge. It's more about proving to potential employers that you are able to function somewhat successfully in the world and aren't completely stupid or incapable of learning new things. Anything that will actually be applicable in a future career or profession will either be learned on the job or in grad school.
I agree with the first half, but the second is a bit off at least in my industry. For me, the general education knowledge is all but worthless. The things I learned in undergrad in journalism, TV production, and graphic design were put to use almost everyday in my career.

I got a job at the local paper during my junior year, and once the paper moved to video and the web my TV production skills came in handy.

Now, I am designing curriculum, making short films for advocacy, and teaching. All with a B.S. degree.
__________________
What do I have?, stuff that I actually use for work! Some old, some new, all effective.
Digital Skunk is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:23 PM   #9
184550
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital Skunk View Post
I agree with the first half, but the second is a bit off at least in my industry. For me, the general education knowledge is all but worthless. The things I learned in undergrad in journalism, TV production, and graphic design were put to use almost everyday in my career.

I got a job at the local paper during my junior year, and once the paper moved to video and the web my TV production skills came in handy.

Now, I am designing curriculum, making short films for advocacy, and teaching. All with a B.S. degree.
I suppose the value of auxiliary activities completed or pursued in undergrad affects ones prospects as well.

I got a BA in History, which while a great basis for advanced degrees, is pretty ****ing useless on its own as I've discovered over the past three years.
184550 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:28 PM   #10
rei101
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
My question is...

Are there jobs for that major? Does people get actually hired? never hear of such career before.
rei101 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:34 PM   #11
Digital Skunk
macrumors 604
 
Digital Skunk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: In my imagination
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanMuir View Post
I suppose the value of auxiliary activities completed or pursued in undergrad affects ones prospects as well.

I got a BA in History, which while a great basis for advanced degrees, is pretty ****ing useless on its own as I've discovered over the past three years.
HAHAHAHAAHAHAHA! I understand

My wife has two degrees, one in history and the only thing she was able to do with both has been teach.
__________________
What do I have?, stuff that I actually use for work! Some old, some new, all effective.
Digital Skunk is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:42 PM   #12
184550
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2008
Quote:
Originally Posted by Digital Skunk View Post
HAHAHAHAAHAHAHA! I understand

My wife has two degrees, one in history and the only thing she was able to do with both has been teach.
I certainly feel for your wife. I've fielded the dreaded 'Why don't you teach?' question too many times.
184550 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 10:50 PM   #13
Digital Skunk
macrumors 604
 
Digital Skunk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: In my imagination
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanMuir View Post
I certainly feel for your wife. I've fielded the dreaded 'Why don't you teach?' question too many times.
ironically, it's what I ended up doing too. More so because of the flakiness of the journalism and broadcasting industry.

If you land a job at a nice university, you'll get paid vacations.
__________________
What do I have?, stuff that I actually use for work! Some old, some new, all effective.
Digital Skunk is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Feb 26, 2013, 11:09 PM   #14
nastebu
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: May 2008
It's a bit of a fallacy that you need to "use" everything you learn in College on the job in order to make the degree meaningful. This is especially true of general education courses. Of course, you'll almost certainly never use what you learned about, for example, the causes of the great depression in your professional employment.

At its best, College is supposed to be preparing you to be a learning, intellectually growing, individual for the rest of your life, not just a good employee. Ideally, what you learn in College will be ways of thinking and applying disciplinary frameworks to answer question, ways that will serve you for decades. If you think about curriculum in that way--what can you teach a person that will last a lifetime?--it is clearer why a history degree, for example, prepares a person to do much more than teach.
nastebu is offline   0 Reply With Quote


Reply
MacRumors Forums > Mac Community > Community Discussion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Why are future iOS "betas" and OS X "Dev Previews" ? AurelMax iOS 7 1 Jul 30, 2013 02:02 PM
Tax cuts for "Job Creators" Coleman2010 Politics, Religion, Social Issues 120 Aug 22, 2012 04:05 PM
"Congratulations Steve! What an incredible Job!" - Eric Schmidt - What did he mean? tninety Apple, Industry and Internet Discussion 0 Jul 8, 2012 08:54 PM

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:52 AM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC