Before you get upset, hear me out first. I know this statement is bold, especially when you consider that I have a fancy degree from a fancy university. But, I believe that it’s because I have these degrees that I can offer you with a different perspective that is different from the one the rest of society usually tells you. Alright, now that you aren’t so upset with me right now, let’s jump into my argument. Once you finish reading this post, I’d love to hear your thoughts!
My kids wont be going to college. I have two boys and one of them is currently in 3rd grade. The other is still not old enough to start Kinder. The older one is at the top of his class and is performing very well. As a parent, I should be super proud that my son is doing so well in school, especially considering that he’s been going to school virtually for almost a year now. My son is on track to have a stellar grade school “career” and go on to take the most advanced courses his school can offer him. Then, he’s going to go on and apply to the best schools and dedicate the next 4–8 years learning a specific trait to then graduate and become a slave for some corporation for the next 35–40 years. Doesn’t sound very appealing does it?
I went down this path. I pushed myself in school to get good grades. I checked off all the T’s and dotted all the I’s. I did everything that I was supposed to do to have a successful life and career. But, here I am after almost 11 years of working as a professional engineer, dreading every minute of my life. Every day, I wake up and do work to make someone else happy. All my hard work goes towards making someone else hit their goals and get massive bonuses. Why would I want the same fate for my kids? Instead, I propose that my kids will not go to college, and instead they are going to follow a different route.
Access to information is ubiquitous. Any topic that you want to learn, you can do so right now. All you have to do is go on the internet and you’ll have a wide range of services and information from numerous sources. You can learn at your own pace, you pick the difficulty, and you can change topics whenever you want. Best part, most of the information is either free or at an extremely low cost. So, the question I’m asking is why are we spending so much go to go a formal institution just to get a piece of paper that says I can memorize facts from a book? I do not want my kids to go through this. I want them to be contributing members of society as soon as possible.
Even-though my son is doing really well in school, his free time is spent shadowing my wife and I start our business. We are teaching him that if he puts his mind and energy into something, he can achieve great things. We are teaching my son that if he wants to change the way things are, he should create his own company to go make those changes. Obviously, he needs to learn fundamentals, but my wife and I take time every day to help accelerate his development of these basic skills. But overall, we empower him to build things and to get creative.
As originally stated, my kids will not be going to college. I don’t want to them to participate in this rat race that is rigged against them. Instead, my wife and I will continue to encourage him to explore his curiosity and provide him with resources to realize his dreams. His priorities, as he grows older will be to create things to solve real world problems. Memorizing facts for school will be secondary and will only be supported because it’s mandatory that he goes to school. Our goal is for our kids to create the future and solve the tough problems that need to be solved. As Elon Musk recently said, there are way too many MBA’s polluting companies and hindering them from creatively solving problems. My thoughts on creativity will be reserved for another day.
What are your thoughts? Do you think it’s time to rethink what success looks likes for the next generation? Should we keep raising kids to do well in school and commit their time and energy to just become another cog in the system? Do you think that if we were to raise our children to have different objectives in life, could we solve more problems? Patrick Bet-David firmly believes that all of the world’s problems are going to be solved by entrepreneurs. Is your child/student being trained to be an entrepreneur?