What they don’t teach you in school
As I’ve mentioned before, I recently graduated from college and have set out into the real world. What has struck me the most is how ill prepared I was to enter into not only life but also the workplace. There are life skills I never managed to pick up along the way (my dad has been lecturing me on the finer points of grocery shopping), but also technical skills for work. I have spent YEARS in school, but I seem to have walked away with very little practical knowledge. Of course, that may be my own fault for studying Latin… but why don’t colleges teach you practical skills?
I feel like I have a pretty good grip on technology news, what’s new, what’s how, how it all works, but it seems that none of this knowledge has a practical application. In elementary school, we learned some fairly sophisticated technology and processes, but 6th grade was basically the end of my computer education. I picked up a few tricks along the way in finance classes or the like, though nothing that would have a meaningful impact on my day to day.
Existing technology like Excel or even Word, have some pretty neat capabilities that we don’t capitalize on. I was describing a task I was assigned at work to my father and he said it sounded like a should just do a mail merge — and at that moment, my life was changed. Why didn’t I learn about mail merges in school?
If everyone is at the same level I am, we are operating way below our potential. Maybe I should sign up for some sort of a computer class, because even though I feel as so I am literate, maybe literacy isn’t enough.