originally posted by: schuyler
Oh dear. So what expertise have you developed? What skill set can you offer a prospective employer that would make that person hire you because you
are so valuable? This is not rocket science these days. If you are about to graduate in chemical engineering, you'll find a good job. If you are
about to graduate with an English degree, you won't.
Funny how this topic keeps arising here and the "boots straps" folks com out of the woodwork preaching the usual 19th & 20th century job
search/mobility strategies, that don't currently work and will NEVER work again.
I've posted the below comment many times on ATS before and I will CONTINUE to post it, so people can finally understand and accept that the "boots
straps" strategy died at LEAST 10 years ago in the USA and is NEVER going to function as it did in previous centuries:
Keeping up with the basics in terms of education and on-the-job work skills won’t be enough for jobs requiring future tech, labor market,
skill-sets. The poor and even the middle class (not the upper middle class) will simply NOT be able to keep up with the skill demands for future
employment, REQUIRED CERTIFICATIONS, STATE LICENSING, etc, while earning wages AND keeping a roof over their heads. In the future these very high
costs skills needed to stay “relevant” in ALL labor markets will only be affordable to the rich, or to VERY far forward thinking middle class
families, willing to sacrifice everything financially to keep their offspring competitive in the larger job market.
I will begin with the usual assertion I hear in regards to the impact of these soon to be real “future-tech jobs”, which contrary to beliefs of
some, includes the traditional trades and "soon to exist" related proprietary tech that will not be repairable, only "replaceable by a
certified/licensed tech" with "approved" formal education.
People seem to always say this rebuttal, “Someone has to get paid to fix the robots!”
I often hear this above noted rebuttal to mass automation in the modern workplace, with big business is hell bent on replacing living workers with
machines, BUT it misses a subtle point that ONLY the children of the wealthy will have the opportunity to become TRUE experts in such fields. Let me
clarify, through the prior 20th century, a poor kid who studied hard could become a lawyer, accountant, even a doctor sometimes, with the right
combination of hard work, savings, scholarships, family support, etc. OR, like most lower class folks, went straight into the trades and learned on
the job with pay. HOWEVER, in engineering and technician curriculum’s today, times are changing to favor kids whom have access to expensive software
and hardware to “experiment with" and “practice on" before entering college or a particular training program. So when they finally get to
college or to their "entry-level job", those whom have had lots of "free time" spent “playing” with robotics and programming outside of class
WILL CERTAINLY outpace their less privileged peer whom fliped burgers part-time to pay rent and school expenses.
Many people generally do not bother to ask themselves, would future robotics consulting companies prefer to hire graduates with little work
experience, whom have demonstrated HANDS-ON, non-professional, robotics experience in the form of a “hobby portfolio”; OR graduates with no
“hobby portfolio” experience, BUT at the same time worked hard to graduate with a difficult major, however didn’t have as much free time to
develop skills specifically related to their major and have a long list of work experience unrelated to their major, i.e. flipping burgers, etc? I’m
seeing this already happening in many different engineering fields where the young workers being hired today are from wealthy families and great
colleges and are ironically being trained by older folks whom were not necessarily as privileged in their youth, but got through school the hard, 20th
century way and were trained on the job, while paid, over VERY long periods of time.
All the above is certainly is no longer an option in 2014 and beyond because companies would prefer to churn experienced staff rather than train fresh
Now for the next part of my observations. Before 1990, 40% of teenagers had part-time jobs while in school. This is a relevant statistic because today
only 20% of teenagers in school have part-time jobs. Teens at one time did make up a sizable portion of the workforce and such changes in employment
Although not my primary point, I do think there is plenty of evidence that teens today do not have the opportunity to get part-time jobs, BUT the
non-working, wealthy ones are beginning to develop advanced skill-sets that COULD be MORE helpful in their future adult careers than say “working at
a taco stand after school”. Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg are very good EARLY examples of people who made use of their free time and access to
money, without having to labor for pay at a "taco stand", where they BOTH developed specialized skills that could not be learned at a MINDLESS
part-time job or even in formal schooling. In the end they leveraged that free time learning into long term LUCRATIVE careers.
In the link below this paragraph, I have posted an example of what I believe to be a young person from a well off family who majored in robotics at
USC, whom doesn’t appear to have had an unrelated part-time job to her major. While in college, she possibly had lots time to “experiment” with
the technology in her spare time. Got a masters degree back-to-back to her bachelors degree AND at the end of the day, got a job offer at a
University sponsored dinner party for robotics majors. NOBODY I went to college with EVER got a job offer at a university sponsored dinner party,
I’m sure many Ivy league and top 10 school graduates do however. My point being, these future “robot repair jobs” are going to require smart
kids with desire to advance, that also went to good schools, had lots of spare time and money to play with the tech outside of school AND got their
jobs offered at exclusive dinner parties, with some of the initial job offerings being non-paying internships at first. Further causing a skills gulf
between the rich whom can work for free indefinitely and the less privileged who need a paycheck the day before they graduate. These jobs will not be
gotten through sending out blind jobs applications on web job boards, as was done in the 20th century. Basically what this girl is doing for Disney,
will in the near future, be more like what a plumber or electrician of today does, EXCEPT you won’t get trained on the job in a low-pay
apprenticeship when at “entry level”. In fact to even be considered for these “future-tech jobs” in the first place you’ll need to have good
academic pedigree, lots of unpaid hobby time and 1+ years of unpaid internships.
Readers can decide for themselves, its my opinion is that this is what a career for a plumber is going to look like in 15+ years, here is her