Let me guess. You looked at the recent Top Colleges List published by Michael Noer and suspiciously thought, “this doesn’t seem right.” I know that’s what went through my mind when I first looked at the list and found that my school, the University of Wisconsin – Madison, was number 147 on the list.
This post originally appeared on Forbes.com.
If we want our country and economy to get back on track we need to fix the education system for math and science related degrees. It’s simple really and everyone knows it. Growth happens when people build and sell things. In an age of high tech innovation those “growth” building blocks rely squarely on the skills acquired in a science, technology, math or engineering curriculum. It’s why the president and other industry groups are advocating for more students to graduate with these degrees.
In a recent article in the New York Times, Christopher Drew talks about “Why Science Majors Change Their Minds.” He really highlights some of the systemic issues that are engrained in our institutions but having experienced firsthand what it’s like to study engineering, I can tell you what’s really going on.
Cramsorption Learning. How fun is this? 2 hours … Read More »
I’ve said several times on this blog that the education system is broken and is in desperate need of change. I now think we are finally starting to see the emergence of a new era in education reform. One led by the private sector.
The issue I still struggle with is how to balance the intersection, or lack thereof, between cutting edge methods of education with societal expectations of having to graduate from an accredited university.
To me, the answer simply boils down to a piece of … Read More »
I’ve blogged about my views on the broken education system in the past, but I don’t think anyone more clearly articulates the issues than Sir Ken Robinson.
This video is a must watch for parents and students or anyone that has a vested interested in education…which should really be everyone.
This post originally appeared on Badger Engineers.
My company Spinback was recently acquired by Buddy Media, the largest Facebook Management Company in the world. It’s clear that my four years studying in the Wisconsin College of Engineering has played a role in that acquisition.
At the core, I’d argue that an engineering, math, or science related degree is the single best degree or use of four years in an undergraduate program, especially a program at UW – Madison. In my years in the COE, I obtained a certain skill set that has helped me succeed during and after school, and in the various businesses I was involved with including Spinback. I’m not talking about skills like designing a circuit or solving for a system of equations. I’m talking about the cliché skills we always hear about but disregard as obvious and too … Read More »
We are experiencing academic inflation. This is a theme I can’t seem to shake and its something that I think is only getting worse. Much worse, so long as our educational institutions keep up the status quo.
If you break it down, the logical train of thought should go something like this:
Go to school
Get a job
Make lots of money
Live your life
Somewhere along the road we ended up at a place that looks something like this:
Go to school – if you can even get in
Take adderall to do well on tests
Do well – assuming the class isn’t beaten up by a ridiculous curve
Not qualified enough to get a high paying job so repeat steps 1 – 4 (or you just want more job security)
No jobs, student loans, and you realized you were passionate about something completely unrelated to the previous 8 … Read More »
If you are in college you should start your own business because there is no better time to do so.
When I was in college working on thecampusatlas.com I remember thinking how great it was to have the flexibility of a student and to have the resources of a college university in order to get things done. I was surrounded by exceptionally bright people from all different backgrounds and areas of expertise who were willing to provide guidance.
A friend of mine recently had success with his college endeavor and conveys a similar thought in a recent article called Deconstructing Invite Media’s success story :
“There is no better time to start a company than when you’re in school,” he said.
After all, college students don’t require a lot of money, their housing often is paid for, and their peers often are willing to hustle at all … Read More »
School is mostly bullshit. The only way you learn things is by doing things. Real things. Things that have consequences and things that have rewards. A “C” on some school paper isn’t really a consequence, and an “A” isn’t really a reward.
A consequence is losing money on a sunk venture.
A consequence is damaging a good relationship on a failed project.
A reward is turning an idea into a reality.
A reward is getting recognition for some meaningful contribution to a meaningful endeavor.
When I was in high school I had the privilege of working for a person who threw me into the fire and showed me first hand what consequences and rewards, in the business world, were all about. That person was Marc Harrison, President of a company called Silicon-East Inc which is a small, very technical and very experienced hands on IT firm.
On day one, Marc had … Read More »
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Over a year ago I wrote an open letter to several faculty members of the University of Wisconsin – Madison. In the letter I voiced my concerns over the broken admissions process and broken academic protocols within the school and within other universities. I also discussed the importance of building a network and more importantly, maintaining the health of that network.
Well, this past weekend I attended my younger brother’s graduation at UW-Madison and I couldn’t help but think about how broken the system still is.
This is another open letter to the faculty members of UW-Madison.
(Before reading this letter, please note that I will be making this letter publicly available on my blog. Also, kindly take note of the recipients).
To: Chancellor Carolyn Martin – email@example.com
To: Provost Paul M. DeLuca, Jr. – firstname.lastname@example.org
To: Director of Admissions, Steve Amundson – email@example.com
To: Dean … Read More »
It will be very different in 10 years. It is very different now.
Pretty soon those backpacks carrying 100 lbs worth of textbooks will be replaced by one, 10.2 oz Amazon Kindle or even your iPod.
iTunes U will be teaming up with universities and other education establishments to offer a free hosting service for educators.
As information continues to become more widespread and readily accessible, the question becomes, what value does a physical university really have?
If I can get the same education for free either on the Internet or through other distributed devices, why do I really need to be in a classroom, or furthermore, why do I even need to be in a University?
Students can take courses online and learn what they need to learn with companies like Phoenix, Kaplan, BigThink, Academic Earth and even YouTube (Dear Ambassadors and Respected … Read More »