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what is the purpose of an education?

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Re: what is the purpose of an education? [#permalink]

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 06:50
riverripper wrote:
agold wrote:
If money was everyone's driving reason for getting an MBA why do people go into non-profit, marketing, GM...wouldnt they all be going into banking (at least a few years ago) but more than 50% of people go into other careers.


River,
Quick question here... by comparing banking with GM and others are you emphasizing more money in banking, as I thought GM and marketing pay well enough and can give you an opportunity to grow into a top exec. Am I mistaken?

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 07:18
I feel like that for most folks - certainly many with whom I've had exchanges on this board - their professional goal is to make money. There's a personal satisfaction element to their goals too, but the big one is money, with which (presumably) they'll be able to support a family that lives very high and such.

My goals are different. I plan to do okay financially in my life (family, kids, college educations, etc.), but I'm never gonna be a millionaire unless something really dramatic happens. And I'm cool with that.

My professional goals are to help ease human suffering and give underprivileged people the tools to enhance their personal dignity. You can definitely make a (good) living doing that, but the salaries just don't compete with the corporate world and selling widgets and investment options and such. I'm getting an MBA to give me the tools to do what I want to do more effectively and go further in my career. Agold has a point about ROI - but I'm measuring my ROI not only in financial terms, but in what I can accomplish and how many I can help.

That's the purpose of my MBA education. Tools. In a more generalized sense, I think the same is true on the undergraduate level.

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 07:50
Ntang wrote:
My professional goals are to help ease human suffering and give underprivileged people the tools to enhance their personal dignity. You can definitely make a (good) living doing that, but the salaries just don't compete with the corporate world and selling widgets and investment options and such. I'm getting an MBA to give me the tools to do what I want to do more effectively and go further in my career. Agold has a point about ROI - but I'm measuring my ROI not only in financial terms, but in what I can accomplish and how many I can help.

That's the purpose of my MBA education. Tools. In a more generalized sense, I think the same is true on the undergraduate level.


That's pretty much my point. You could achieve these goals without getting an MBA. If you said "I want to be a lawyer", I would say go to law school. But if you said "I want to ease human suffering and give underprivileged peopel the tools to enhance their personal dignity", the first thing I would say would not be go to bschool. But you have clearly identified bschool as an effecient way to achieve your goals. So regardless of whatever job you are doing know, you feel an MBA provides you the best ROI while acieving your goals.

I personally don't think this is the same for undergrad. I mean let's be honest as long as you go to a good enough institution you can pretty much get any job with and degree. An undergrad degree help you develop, teaches you how to learn and signals to your employer that you can be taught.

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:01
My two cents:

I agree that an undergraduate education is about "finding yourself," but as an engineer, it was more than that. I learned how to think analytically, assess problems, and come up with creative solutions. Granted, many of my classmates were better at this than me, I think many of them were lacking the important aspect of communication skills. You can be the best engineer in the world, but if you can't articulate your results, they are essentially worthless.

So if I'm so perfect <sarcasm>, why an MBA? Easy enough...as I have progressed through my career, I have encountered problems that involve aspects that are too complex or too intricate for me to solve using the tools I currently possess. Do I expect an MBA to give me all of those tools? No, but I expect that continuing my education will help me to fine-tune my problem-solving skills into something that will make me more efficient and successful at addressing business issues. Yes, an MBA is about networking, but it's also about getting exposure to a diverse group of students who can suggest different ways to attack a problem. My hope is that I can ultimately perform better in my desired role than I could without an MBA.

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:25
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?
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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:28
agold wrote:
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?


What if I say yes? Does that make you think less of me? :oops:

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:28
Actually, this is exactly the kind of stuff I tell my friends over beers.
A lot of beers.

agold wrote:
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?


P.S. Where's jallenmorris? 8-)

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:31
LLLOYYYYYYD. I need my coffee!!!
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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:32
agold wrote:
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?


I agree with you agold, I just think there are a disproportionate amount of these people here at gmatclub because of the culture and the kind of people it attracts. The vast majority of the people that I meet are career/money focused. It's like when you meet people during school visits and in the info session they are talking about how they want to set up a nonprofit to provide brownies to starving kids around the world but when you start talking to them afterwards they start talking about the PE/VC placement statistics.

I understand people viewpoint who want to transition into less paying jobs, I just think they are a small minority of people who attend.

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:37
gixxer1000 wrote:
agold wrote:
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?


I agree with you agold, I just think there are a disproportionate amount of these people here at gmatclub because of the culture and the kind of people it attracts. The vast majority of the people that I meet are career/money focused. It's like when you meet people during school visits and in the info session they are talking about how they want to set up a nonprofit to provide brownies to starving kids around the world but when you start talking to them afterwards they start talking about the PE/VC placement statistics.

I understand people viewpoint who want to transition into less paying jobs, I just think they are a small minority of people who attend.


It's a very shallow facade that began with Harvard and Stanford (who tend to set the trends for other business schools). When I look at it, I think it's just a way to encourage further nepotism. The majority of folks who are concerned with setting up a non-profit or being a board member of a non-profit at age 22-25 are Ivy League graduates and/or members of the upper class. This is part of their culture and part of the culture of NYC and the Eastern establishment. Go take a poll and find out how many Ivy League graduates sit on the board of non-profits before the age of 27, and then go take that same pool at a Big 10 Midwestern state school. Should be interesting to see the results :)
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New post 18 Dec 2008, 08:59
agold wrote:
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?


Yes. I wish more people did.

Though I know what you're talking about. There are, unfortunately, lots of folks who throw around a lot of B.S. about this stuff. (I like to think my peace corps service shows adcoms that I've walked the walk as well, though, and intend to continue.) But I don't know if I agree so much that there's a class division between do-gooders who actually go into the field.

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New post 18 Dec 2008, 09:05
Ntang wrote:
agold wrote:
You guys are starting to sound like you're writing an admissions essay. Is that the kind of stuff you would tell your friends over beers?


Yes. I wish more people did.

Though I know what you're talking about. There are, unfortunately, lots of folks who throw around a lot of B.S. about this stuff. (I like to think my peace corps service shows adcoms that I've walked the walk as well, though, and intend to continue.) But I don't know if I agree so much that there's a class division between do-gooders who actually go into the field.


I'm talking about the guys who work 80 hours/week chasing money and still somehow sit on the boards of 4 non-profits. This is an upper-class shingle that they hang on their resume - a big facade, nothing more, nothing less.

I am not speaking about you or other people dedicated full-time to non-profit work and service.
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Re: what is the purpose of an education?   [#permalink] 18 Dec 2008, 09:05

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