Does the College you Attend Ultimately Affect the Outcome of your Career

Have you ever asked yourself the age old question, “Does the reputation of the college I attend ultimately affect my career”? The most common answer is “yes”, but in my opinion, the most common answer should be “no”. The purpose of post-secondary schooling is not to use the school’s reputation as a “brownie point” in your career, but the purpose of this higher education is to adapt necessary skill and common knowledge in your particular field. In the job arena, skill and determination can take you a lot further than riding on the reputation of your school (that is “if” your school has a good reputation). Along with skill and determination, you will need to have a well decorated resume’ filled with numerous values. Things like your experience, where you’ve worked, and references fall under the category of the “values” that I referred to above. Appearance is very precious because many people in the business field and the general public do what is called “judging a book by its cover”; how you present yourself is very vital to your career. For example, if you just so happen to choose the path of an entrepreneur your post-secondary schooling does not weigh half as much as your appearance, determination, and your bright idea . If one would sit and look at the average celebrity, they’ll see that their bright idea is classified as their God-given talent and they always seem to either work hard on the perfection of their talent or the perfection of both their talent and their appearance. In so many words I am stating that I believe the following: The reputation and the popularity of the post-secondary school you attend does not ultimately affect your career.
Many have their numerous reasons for going to college. In a survey conducted by an independent survey company , 68% female and 68.2% male votes showed that people between the ages of 30 and 36 believed that the purpose of post-secondary schooling is to ultimately get a well paying job. Other groups consisting of young adults between the ages of 19 and 27 all had their different purposes for post secondary schooling. Some of these reasons included, “to develop critical thinking skills”, “to raise your awareness”, “to avoid going out into the real world”, or “to gain specialized knowledge in a specific field”. I totally understand that four out of five of these reasons logically place themselves as the answer to what the purpose of post-secondary college is, however the real answer is that post-secondary schooling is purposed for the adaptation of skill and common knowledge {it really doesn’t matter what field your going into}.In reality, no matter what school you attend and no matter what the general public thinks about the school, there is always a way for the attending student to acquire a degree for their prescribed course of study. Even when you receive your degree, your “well paying job” is still not guaranteed. The reputation of the school you attend does not affect your career because if it did, every school would have a spectacular reputation. If every school had a spectacular reputation, then the word “reputation {rep}” would eventually cancel itself out because the word reputation means to have a specific ranking in a group, and if every school had a spectacular ranking, then every school would be number one. In which we all know is impossible.
Now that we understand that the purpose of post-secondary schooling is to adapt skill and common knowledge, we need now to develop an understanding as to what skill is as it relates to the development of your career. Webster’s Dictionary defines the word skill as “a great ability or proficiency, expertness that comes from training, practice, etc.” , in other words a skill is anything that you can do right now! In a Creative Job Search article it was stated that, “Everyone has skills, many of which employers are looking for in an employee, yet there are only few who can identify all of the skills to describe them as an employee”. There’s a little something that employment experts find essential in a person’s career called skill identification. Skill identification is the ability to identify your type of skill as it relates to the following categories: Job-Specific skills, Adaptive skills, and Transferable skills. Job-Specific skills are those kinds of skills that do a specific job. For example, if your were to hire a person for a maid position, they would or should have the ability (skill) to clean up something. Now adaptive skills are skills that are acquired in the area of school, in today’s world adaptive skills are extremely helpful because the majority of businesses are technologically based. The natural ability to work with technology is spectacular, but rare. In other words, an adaptive skill can come in handy based upon the field you are going into. Transferable skills are skills that can be used in any job arena, this skill is simply a combination of adaptive skills and job-specific skills. This is a very valuable skill to anyone who has it; this is what employers look for in a potential employee. One thing most people forget to remember is that employers look at what their potential employee can do for them based upon their skill and other aspects of what they are and can do, they really don’t look at the school you come from or it reputation.
In life we can know the purpose of post-secondary school, and we can have every ounce of skill in the world, but if we don’t have determination, we can not go anywhere with our careers. Even if you do attend a prestigious college and get a degree, when you don’t have the determination to make your knowledge and degree worth your while, then where can you go? Your level of determination can show through the way you make an effort to network with people, the way you extend a completely well decorated resume , or the way you make an effort to present yourself in a proper manner. There even have been people who have shown their determination by standing on the street with a sign (no I am not talking about homeless people). For example, on ABC13 news in Houston, Texas there was a woman by the name of Debbie Kutra who stood on the corner of a busy intersection with her sign saying, “I.T professional in need of a job, can you help, please take my resume”. Most who stand on the corner with a sign are believed to be homeless and in want of a handout, but Debbie Kutra was just the opposite, she wanted to give the people that walked by a resume’. Employment experts stated that “In such a competitive job market, standing out is the best thing you can do”, and this is what Debbie Kutra did. Debbie Kutra is a prime example of what determination is because 85% of job openings are filled by people with the determination like Debbie even before the openings hit the classifieds. So the best way to build a great career is to show your determination through your networking skills, you can network with your family, friends, or foes, c’mon does it really matter?
Knowing the purpose of post-secondary schooling, being extremely skillful, and having all of the determination in the world are all helpful in developing an excellent career, but a well decorated resume and excellent negotiating skills can be even the more helpful. A well decorated resume usually includes every aspect of who a person is as it pertains to them as an employee. A resume can be written in chronological format , functional format , or combination format , however the most highly recommended is combination format because this give the employer a chance to have complete overlook of you. A well decorated resume has five essential parts: a clearly stated job objective, the highlights of your qualifications, the highlights of your relevant skills and experience, your chronological work experience, and a list of relevant education and training. In order to state a clear job objective, you must first ask and answer the following questions: What do I want to do?, For whom or with whom do I want to it with?, Where do I want to do it?, and At what level do I want my responsibility to be? When I say At what level do I want my responsibility to be, I simply mean what sort of job placement I want. Once you have answered these questions, you have now clearly stated your job objective and you can now move on into completing the four other parts in a well decorated resume. The next section to be completed is the highlighting of your qualifications. In doing this, you are expounding on how much experience you have and how many credentials you have. You also briefly touch on at the most one of your accomplishments, one or two of your skills or abilities, and a reference to you values and work ethic (only if appropriate). The last few steps to creating a well decorated resume are relatively easy, the only things you are doing is listing your skills, your education, training, and work history. But in listing your work history, you must remember that everything must be in chronological order, this ensures the relativity of your titles, experience, and skill based upon the job you are applying for. Out of everything you can learn about writing a well decorated resume, you must remember that, “A good resume cannot guarantee you a job, but a bad resume can prevent you from getting the interview” . Therefore, you cannot depend on the “rep” your school or the decoration of your resume, although these two can be extremely helpful to your career. If you don’t have a good resume, you have to have good negotiating skills. No matter what your gender, race, or age is you’re more likely to get a job if you can negotiate.
Skill, determination, and your resume are all equally as important to your career, however who you are and how you present yourself are even the more important. The way you present yourself usually includes, how you look, your level of articulation, your knowledge of the field you are going into, your promptness, and your confidence. Perfection in these areas is vitally important because of these two reasons, numerous amounts of people “Judge a book by its cover” and “You only have one chance to make a first impression”. Being on time just looks good to the employer and how you look simply means to dress the part. For example, you cannot go into the business arena dressed like the soccer player expecting the job of a CEO. Although the status quo seems to cause people to discriminate, the quo states that “you must dress the part, according to the arena you are going into”, and that seems to be what the majority of society follows. In an interview, the way you articulate really matters, you may need to talk mostly about the things that are relevant, in order to hold the employers attention and in doing this remember to try to include every ounce of important information as to why you are good for the job. If you look at the business plan of the average celebrity (yes they are business people too!), you’ll see that the reputation of their school, if they attended one, has no affect on their career actually their overall appearance, of course skill, or God-given talent has the overall affect.
Now that we have baked our career building cake filled with the purpose of post-secondary schooling, the importance of skill, the importance of determination, the steps to a well decorated resume, and the major importance of your appearance we can put the icing on it. The icing is simply displaying the weight of experience. Experience is highly important in getting a job, not unless you can convince the employer to give you a job with out it. There are usually many ways for you to gain experience; you can volunteer and apply for internships. Every single day is another chance to build more experience, no matter what field we go into or what we do everyday we always have the opportunity to get experience.
A successful career solely depends upon a person’s skill, determination, resume, appearance, and experience. In other words, the reputation of your school does not ultimately affect anyone’s career.