Re: The Last Word on Degrees :-)

Subject: Re: The Last Word on Degrees :-)
From: mpriestley -at- VNET -dot- IBM -dot- COM
Date: Tue, 7 Jun 1994 10:36:11 EDT

BA, English Philosophy and Drama. All my computer experience was
extracurricular. IBM took a chance giving me a student internship, it gave
me some good experience and references, and I got hired when I graduated.

Did my degree help me get hired? Yes. Even my grades mattered. What
mattered more were extracurricular activities that showcased my other skills,
interests, and accomplishments. Interestingly, I had groomed my resume
for an application to grad school for Creative Writing: the same things I
emphasized for various MFA programmes (good writing skills, interpersonal
skills, teaching experience, etc.) gave me the chance at my current career.

Do I use any of my university experience in my work? Yep. Anything you
learn, anywhere, ends up being applied someplace. English for presentation
styles and rhetorical techniques, philosophy for logical thinking and
open-minded questioning, drama for presentation issues and teamwork. But I
wouldn't say university _taught_ me those things, so much as my interest in
them led me to university, and also to technical writing. It's nice to be
able to quote obscure names, though, when someone starts playing
"more-pretentious-than-thou". And I think the cross-fertilization has
helped me be creative in my approach to work.


Michael Priestley
mpriestley -at- vnet -dot- ibm -dot- com
Disclaimer: my opinions not IBM's, written during my coffee break yet!

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