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Floof! Education..

10 days ago

I was recently engaged in a now familiar and tedious "discussion" with my father. He is constantly bothered by the fact that I am the only one of his children without a college degree. I am not bothered, I went for a year. I majored in Nutrition Science. I objected to having to pay for and pass classes that had nothing to do with my degree. I was really enjoying the nutrition classes. I was irritated that I was required to go to, watch and review a play to be graded for a class that had nothing to do with the degree I was pursuing. For a BS in Nutrition Science I feel like I should not have to endure 3 fine arts, 4 history, and 3 English credits, or whatever they were. Even though I enjoyed learning about history and seeing plays, they should NOT be required for that degree. It is SUCH a con. I enrolled in college in order to gain the knowledge to embark on a CAREER, not gather ammo for idle small talk.

This always leads to another repeat "discussion" about how I feel that some of the curriculum I suffered through in high school was such a waste. I do realize that people in certain careers need the knowledge of such things as Algebra, Calculus, Latin, etc. I knew very early on that I was not going to be one of those people. And yet I had to suffer through them anyway. I will say nothing of the required "religion" classes that were a constant from kindergarten through high school. I should not have to say my opinion of them for it to be clear...... And if I had to endure "just in case" classes in high school, I feel as though colleges need to be more focused. I do realize its a money thing. The more classes they require, the more they charge, the higher the profit. But that does not mean I do not object.

On the other hand, I wish that other. more practical classes should be required or at least available for high school kids. Things that everyone or almost everyone can find useful. It boggles my mind that home ec and shop classes are not a thing anymore. Or at least not common anymore. Everyone can benefit from basic cooking, cleaning and repair skills. Everyone should know how to change a tire and check the oil in their car. Other things that I think would be better options:

Finances. This can be a class that takes all of high school to complete. Everything from negotiating a salary, household budgeting, retirement and estate planning to taxes, investing ,insurance and mortgages, interest rates, everything. My own financial education was my parents telling me that every single thing I bought myself from money I earned from my job was a "stupid waste of money." Really helpful......

This may be a part of the finance classes but things like how to write a nice resume, interview skills, how to ask for a raise or file a grievance. Employment laws. Workplace diplomacy. I know that seems silly but I am amazed at how many people do not know not to steal others peoples food at the office. I would benefit from these classes. I struggle to make a stellar resume and I also do not necessarily interview well. I am not someone who answers questions based on making myself seem perfect for the job at hand. I just answer. And I need to work on that. I cringe now when I think about my interview to temp for my current job. I got quite a few startled glances. I was not rude or crass or anything, but I did answer honestly without candy coating. I wish I was taught how to finagle around HR and their BS better. Right now I just rage at them when they do something dumb or disrespectful. That's not good.

Or as an alternative to THAT, entrepreneur classes. How to start a business. The requirements, laws, things to consider like expenses, customer service skills, advertising, etc.

Actual health classes. And by that I mean better than "don't get fat, don't get an STD, don't smoke, don't get pregnant or get someone pregnant unless you are married to them, and not at all if you're poor, done." My beginner nutrition classes in that one year of college were very basic indeed, but very informative and something I think that people would benefit from better if taught from a younger age. And nutrition is only a small part in our overall health that young people need to be aware of. Mental health and happiness should absolutely be included in this too.

I remember the elective choices in my high school was a choice between advanced Latin or advanced Spanish. That was it. I would have enjoyed choices such as gardening, crafting classes such as crochet or sewing, I would have liked having a basic intro to the inner workings of a car or electrical things. And I really wish that I was given a chance for a better education in computer matters. Excel is still my sworn enemy. I have taken classes independently in it, and I just cannot work it without a cheat sheet to guide me along every step. I think the younger the brain, the better it is to instill stuff like that. In my case anyway. All of these things I mentioned of course can be learned independently as an adult. But I am just thinking about how absolutely helpless I have been in the past about certain things that all people should know about, and how it would have helped to have been taught about practical things instead of reciting Latin verbs. I mean sure, at the time I would not have enjoyed having to learn how to change the oil in a car, but I really hated Latin class and was forced to do it anyway. And I have not had a conversation in Latin ever, but my oil needs to be changed regularly.

How to be safe online. I am required to take all sorts of training on phishing, email security, malware, etc. This should be taught in school. Of course, it might be already. This conversation came about because I mentioned that I have received an invite to my 20 year High School reunion. We did not have a 5, 10 or 15 year, but they want to have a 20 year. So its been a while since I have seen the inside of a school and experienced the grind of it all. This turned into my mother googling a lot of my classmates (there were only like 30 of us in my graduating class) and exclaiming about how so and so has 2 Masters degrees, and so and so has their doctorate, and LOOK, so and so is a CEO! And it just kind of deteriorated from there......

So anyway, what else do YOU think should be taught in regular school (not higher education), either by choice or by requirement?

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