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Kansas State Student With 4.0 GPA Quits School Calling Higher Ed a Scam

Kansas State Student With 4.0 GPA Quits School Calling Higher Ed a Scam


You have to give this kid some credit for thinking outside the box. He’ll probably go far.

Inside Higher Ed reports:

Giving the Finger to K-State and General Education

Billy Willson finished his first (and his last) semester at Kansas State University this week — and in so doing has set off a debate there and beyond on the value of college and of general education in particular.

In a Facebook post, he announced that he was dropping out, despite having earned a 4.0 grade point average. He said that he would start his own business and learn more from that experience than anything he could hope to achieve at Kansas State or any college. He ran a photo of himself giving the finger to Kansas State, although he’s since said he really wants to be doing that to all of higher education.

Many Inside Higher Ed readers will likely find his comments insulting and ill informed, and some faculty members and students at K-State have pointed out that he wrote some things that are factually questionable. But Willson is attracting many fans online as his Facebook post has gone viral — and trashing course requirements and general education seems to be a big part of Willson’s appeal.

“YOU ARE BEING SCAMMED,” Willson wrote on Facebook. (The wording, grammar and capitalization quoted here and later in this story are verbatim from Willson’s and others’ social media posts.) “You may not see it today or tomorrow, but you will see it some day. Heck you may have already seen it if you’ve been through college.

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Wolfgang Pauli’s famous (and not entirely apocryphal), “That is not only not right; it is not even wrong,” comes to mind.

Sounds like just another kid who realized that he can’t handle the math questions. Since most people can’t, he’s about as solidly “inside the box” as he can get.

If you’re spooked by quadratic equations (which are, indeed, useless for most people) but still want to go into any field of engineering, all we’ll be able to say is … “He chose … poorly.”

So, good luck, kid. And as Bob & Ray used to say at sign-off, “This is Ray Goulding reminding you to write if you get work.”

Good for him. Unless you’re going into something that requires hard science (the medical field, engineering, math, physics, chemistry, etc.), a degree is pretty much a waste of time. My father graduated from a technical high school over seventy years ago – he never attended college. Yet he was better educated than the vast majority of these special snowflakes who exhibit zero critical thinking skills, can’t write a coherent paragraph, break into hives at the sight of a multistep story problem, disparage Shakespeare as a dead white European without ever having read a single sentence written by the Bard, and regularly crap on our nation’s founding documents.

Higher education IS a scam, apart from the few technical disciplines that actually require advanced knowledge. What passes for a college experience these days is really thinly disguised indoctrination and credentialism.

I earned a BSEE in the late sixties and I’ve gotta’ say, I never once during my entire working life used any of the crap I learned in engineering school. Calculus: No; Differential Equations: No; Laplace Transforms: No; Chemistry: No; Solid State Physics: No; Electric fields: No; Thermodynamics: No

Basically a degree is just a ticket that gains you entrance to the working world where they will teach you what you need to know.

I haven’t ever hear it said that a college education is for everyone. Some don’t have the intellectual capacity. Some haven’t the maturity. Some do but find it inadequate and boring.

If Wilson thinks it’s a scam and a waste of thousands of dollars, then give him credit for at least making a decision not to do so.

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | December 24, 2016 at 6:52 pm

IMO, you go to the “leadership schools” for the credentials. That’s your ticket to a managerial job in the government bureaucracy, and entry level jobs in media, corporate America, Wall Street, and increasingly foundations. While at those schools you network and build relationships that you draw on the rest of your life. If you learn something along the way, great, but it’s mostly about building contacts among the future elite.

Those schools are the Ivies, maybe 15-20 highly selective private schools, and a handful of public universities.

So K-State wasn’t the right path to become part of the elite. He could still get there but it’s a more circuitous route and requires more luck. But if he wants to run/start his own business he’s making the right choice. Just be warned that about 90% of all new businesses fail. Then he has to find something else to do.

I don’t believe that every school wants to “scam” you with gen ed requirements. I certainly don’t like teaching them, and at least half of students seem extremely disinterested in learning in them.

I’d say about 15-25% don’t need them at all. The problem is that we’ve told everyone they start at the same level in college and thus, in the interest of “fairness”, we put the top tier through what the average student needs just to wake up and realize they aren’t in high school anymore.

The top tier are where they are because they put in more work than was required of them in high school and actually loved learning. Those who don’t have the patience are rightfully pissed that their advancement is halted for the sake of feelings and inclusion.

The biggest scam is the metrics used to rank schools. The freshman retention rates and 4 year grad rates drive so many stupid, feeling-sparing decisions in higher ed admin as they try to game their way up the rankings.