Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

ONE of the big in­di­ca­tors of how out of touch politi­cians, mil­len­ni­als and their en­ablers are is the coun­try’s ob­ses­sion with univer­sity. The Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment has un­veiled a plan to fund youth work ex­pe­ri­ence while they’re on the dole.

The move has been howled down by aca­demics – and, sadly, young peo­ple them­selves – as slave labour and even against the law.

This high­lights just how delu­sional many mil­len­ni­als have been al­lowed to be­come.

Brought up on a diet of “you must go to uni”, and “the gov­ern­ment will look after you if you make bad choices”, the thought of work ex­pe­ri­ence sends them into fits.

Hell, they’re even get­ting paid to do work ex­pe­ri­ence un­der this scheme, whereas most peo­ple back in the day had to do it for free and were grate­ful for the chance.

For the record, I don’t have a de­gree. When I fin­ished Year 12 at St Bren­dan’s Col­lege Yep­poon 23 years ago, prob­a­bly less than three­quar­ters of my grade went to uni, and most of those who did were study­ing the sciences, prop­erty valu­ing, com­put­ers, ac­count­ing or teach­ing.

A few man­aged to land en­try- level jobs at banks, some went to trades ap­pren­tice­ships, some re­turned to their fam­ily prop­er­ties, and some went seek­ing for­tune and fame over­seas ( one bloke still hasn’t come back).

I got ac­cepted into uni but then was of­fered a cadet­ship at the Innisfail Ad­vo­cate and ea­gerly ac­cepted it, but I’d have vir­tu­ally no chance to­day of get­ting a news job with­out a de­gree.

The same goes for al­most ev­ery white- col­lar in­dus­try in Aus­tralia.

A good mate was re­cently made re­dun­dant from a fi­nance com­pany after 20 years in which he started at the bot­tom and worked his way up to se­nior man­age­ment.

His work his­tory is ex­em­plary and his ref­er­ences glow­ing. But he doesn’t have a de­gree and has made it to just one in­ter­view in about 40 sim­i­lar jobs he’s ap­plied for.

Most of the time, he hasn’t even made it past the first round, re­ceiv­ing no­ti­fi­ca­tion of his fail­ure within 24 hours of sub­mit­ting his ap­pli­ca­tions.

If you look at 99 per cent of whitecol­lar job ads, they say ap­pli­cants must have a de­gree or demon­stra­ble ex­pe­ri­ence in the field.

But for more and more mid­dleaged and se­nior job­seek­ers, the “demon­stra­ble ex­pe­ri­ence” re­quire­ment is noth­ing more than hog­wash.

This ob­ses­sion with univer­sity is con­sign­ing thou­sands of po­ten­tially great em­ploy­ees with peer­less prac­ti­cal ex­pe­ri­ence to the scrapheap in favour of grad­u­ates with a few let­ters after their names.

There’s also the is­sue of grad­u­ates hav­ing to be re­trained once they get a job be­cause their de­gree didn’t equip them with the right “real world” train­ing to hit the ground run­ning.

If a grad­u­ate can hon­estly say they learned less in their first year work­ing than what they learned in three years at uni, they are in the mi­nor­ity.

This ob­ses­sion is plainly dis­crim­i­na­tory. If your high school marks aren’t good enough to get into uni, it’s no longer as easy to just start as a ju­nior bank teller and learn on the job.

TAFE is an op­tion but again that’s more study and we’re talk­ing about peo­ple who have shown study­ing isn’t re­ally their thing. But uni is big busi­ness nowa­days and it’s in uni­ver­si­ties’ fi­nan­cial in­ter­ests to per­pet­u­ate a “no de­gree, no fu­ture” men­tal­ity.

It might not be so hard to take if the uni­ver­si­ties weren’t also act­ing as havens for pro­fes­sional stu­dents learn­ing such world- chang­ing sub­jects as gen­der stud­ies and how ter­ri­ble West­ern cul­ture ( read “white” cul­ture) and colo­nial­ism are.

A con­ser­va­tive think tank, the In­sti­tute of Public Af­fairs, has com­piled a list of some of the more point­less cour­ses be­ing of­fered at Aussie unis: Latin Amer­ica through Mu­sic, Food and Drugs; Witch Hunt­ing; and Erotic Texts, just to name a few.

Rather than en­cour­ag­ing kids to sign up for years of univer­sity debt and fill­ing them with false be­lief that a de­gree guar­an­tees a high- pay­ing job, we should be mak­ing it al­low­able again for peo­ple to leave school and un­der­take trainee­ships, learn­ing on the job from day one.

By re­ject­ing “com­pul­sory” univer­sity, we can also ed­u­cate em­ploy­ers that peo­ple with­out a de­gree aren’t worth­less. It’s time to stand up to this men­tal­ity and leave uni to those who need to go in or­der to be doc­tors, phar­ma­cists, and teach­ers.

NOT NEC­ES­SARY: The coun­try’s ob­ses­sion with univer­sity isn’t good.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.