This is my commentary on Bryan Alexander’s commentary of an Op-Ed in The New York Times. You’d think I’d be wholeheartedly in favour of fewer jobs requiring a degree and, I am, broadly speaking.
However, and I suppose I should write a more lengthy piece on this somewhere, I am a little concerned about jobs becoming credential-free and experience-free experiences. Anecdotally, I’ve found that far from CVs and resumes being on the decline, they’re being used more than ever — along with rounds and rounds of interviews that seem to favour, well… bullshitters.
At a broader level, I find the Times piece fitting into my peak higher education model in a quiet way. The editorial doesn’t explicitly call for fewer people to enroll in college, but does recommend that a chunk of the population pursue careers without post-secondary experience (or credentials). In other words, should public and private institutions heed the editorial, we shouldn’t expect an uptick in enrollment, but more of the opposite.
Which brings me to a final point. I’ve previously written about a huge change in how Americans think about higher ed. For a generation we thought that the more people get more college experience, the better. Since 2012 or so there have been signs of that national consensus breaking down. Now if the New York Times no longer shares that inherited model, is that shared view truly broken?