Mon. April 9, 2018 – the future of work?

55F and drizzle today, grey and dreary.

Some discussion late yesterday about the future, education, and work.

My wife still thinks college is a good idea, and we’re funding appropriately to allow both kids to go if they want to. I am pretty sure it’s a waste of time and money outside of a few narrow fields, mainly STEM and the Arts. (Not gonna use the trendy “STEAM” moniker, as what is left?) Further, it’s a lefty PC hellhole on most campuses, where political indoctrination dominates every aspect of life.

The one thing I do like about going away to college is the break with your old life, and starting an independent life on your own. However, I think that it no longer works that way for the majority of students.

Several folks here have expressed the idea that they wouldn’t encourage a young person to enter their field (computer programming, management, support). My engineering trade mags say that most engineers WOULD encourage someone to enter, but that field takes a mindset (and mind) that most people don’t have. Many pundits suggest training in work that requires physical presence at a specific place (the traditional trades) as a way to future proof yourself. Others suggest caring fields (which pay like cr@p, and you have to deal with literal cr@p) but again, to do well in those fields requires a particular mindset.

I’ve subscribed to a “portfolio” approach since I first heard about it, mainly that work should be like an investment portfolio. Some high demand (risk) but high reward, some high satisfaction, but low reward (volunteer work). The key idea is that you move between different types of work in your portfolio at different points in your life. thus, I’ve had work that paid very well but required constant travel. I’ve had work that paid poorly but was very satisfying. I’ve moved thru each without a lot of angst mainly because I see them as different types of work in my ‘portfolio’ and recognize that none of them are permanent.

So, what does the hive mind think? Keeping in mind that the pendulum swings, the wheel turns, etc, and in 10 years the college situation might be different (neo-Victorian?) Also remember there are smaller colleges now that are not so lefty, although they tend to be religious.

Where will the work be and where will it not be? What will be required to get that work?

nick