It’s who you know

Some people have become professional students furthering their education, hoping that someday it will lead to  bigger, better jobs. However, it is being shown that in today’s society education takes a backseat to professional experience.

Jobseekers will realize that degrees will not put them ahead of those who have done more in that company’s particular area of business.

From time to time I notice students, faculty and advisors pushing the idea that without a degree, or education one can not be successful in a set career…I am against this concept to the fullest.

From my own personal experience in the work field and common sense knowledge, hands on and being trained, outweighs the progression process than one learning from a text book and lectures on what a career field really is. One can study for years on what journalism is, but without being mentored and stepping your foot in the door, you will never really know what the true importance is in the way you write, or how you should write, trust me the styles we are learning and writing in the classroom differ in the real world jobs.

When applying to jobs, the applications and résumés are solely focused on your recent experiences, and barely weighed on that one question at the bottom… Level of education?

The management want to see your experience and how you will fit in and adapt to their style of work, not how many classrooms you’ve sat in.

I worked as a server in a Hilton restaurant, when I wanted to move to the front desk department, my résumé was up against Hospitality degrees from UW. Why was I chosen over that guy? I even asked my employer, his response was, “Because we (management) feel that you are more aware of the hotel atmosphere and the guest relations, by being around the environment for a year, (my server job).”

Since then my work experience has also brought me to the Front Office Supervisor position, because of the hands on training, and the mentors right there in my field of work, not right there in a classroom that is designed to focus on a much broader view of that certain degree one is working for.

People learn from being in the field not sitting in the classroom. I am currently working towards a transfer degree, for journalism and hospitality; due to the social acceptance that a degree is the only way to succeed in your dreams, and everything that I have learned and used in my daily jobs as a News Editor for the Jibsheet and as a Supervisor at a Marriott location has been the lessons learned in the field.

I believe that education should be more focused on as a testing point, if someone doesn’t necessarily know what they want to advance in they can take classes upon classes of different studies and find where they are most suited. But if you know what you want to do then get out there and find the bottom of that job that is just barely considered a foot in the door, and trust me, in my opinion that will be seen over the degree. I want to be the GM at an upstanding hotel, so I became a server in a hotel restaurant at 17, I have the experience and loads and loads of knowledge of what hospitality really means based on life experience not my hospitality classes. The who you know outweighs the what you know.

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