To school or not to school?

A couple of months ago I got into a debate with a friend who couldn’t understand why I chose to go back to school to finish my journalism degree. He is a self taught director and cinematographer who is one of the best at what he does and has won numerous awards in the film and TV industry. According to him you can learn anything off the internet e.g ┬áif I wanted to learn how to edit or take photos I would just go on YouTube and find several tutorials. Go on try it for yourself, think of any skill, any question you have on any topic and go on Google search and bam! it takes a matter of seconds (that is if you don’t end up on the dubious side of the internet if you know what I mean….)

His main point was that higher education in Kenya costs a lot of time and money and often does not translate to you gaining skills and knowledge relevant to your field. I disagree because whether you’re in a class or on the net if you have no interest and don’t take the time to practice you’ll gain nothing. As part of the requirements for my degree I have done compulsory courses such as Algebra but I’ve also studied PR writing which though outside my area of concentration is relevant to my field. I think the overall aim is to have a graduate who is well trained in their field but is also knowledgeable about other topics and has gotten the chance to develop a skill in line with their natural talents and abilities.

I don’t know about you but my parents & I fork out a lot of money at my uni so I’m out to use every resource and get value for money every semester. Sometimes I think about what else I could be doing with my life and my money but having reached a certain level of self awareness I recognize certain truths.

1. I am young&have no dependents so if I’m wrong about school I can start over or pick something else and the world will not come to an end.

2. I am smart. Even when I make little effort I get good grades but when I push myself, ask questions, get into a debate, do research my mind is LIT and I like that kind of high.

3. I am street smart. I can talk my way through most things, I’m good with people, I have crazy ideas & I’m daring. If I had never left the go to uni-graduate-get a job-get married path I never would have known this about myself.

Whether you choose to go to Uni or learn to code off YouTube be open to learning and be willing to fight for what you want, it’s your life after all. Oh and just so we’re clear I’d rather see a trained doctor who went to Uni sit there while you join Google in speculating about what’s wrong with me. I can do that at home thank you very much!

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