As I listen to middle-aged parents pontificating about the poor choices college students make I obviously think they are talking about sex, drugs and rock “n” roll. Those were the concerns that dominated my parent’s thoughts when I was in school.
I was wrong. Very wrong!
The poor choices that they are talking about are the career majors the kids are selecting, “After all,” the conversation goes, “who’s hiring an anthropologist, an art historian or even a liberal artist”?
As I was not a part of the conversation I interjected “If guided properly what should their direction be, Mrs. Robinson (with respects to Anne Bancroft and Dustin Hoffman in the graduate)-plastics?”
Most, not understanding my allusion, simply said “technology”.
“The name of the future,” they said “understand technology and you write your own ticket”. The popular thinking goes that anything else except medicine and a few other professions is a dead-end.
“Technology”, I said “not plastics?”
Hmmm! Let me understand this thinking. No disagreement that the arts and much of social sciences have no room for the number of graduates coming out every year, but technology does?
The big 800lb. gorilla Microsoft was supposed to have 6,000 layoffs but tripled that number to 18,000. The largest round of layoffs in Microsoft history, surpassing the 5,800 record set in 2009.
Cisco, to enhance the bottom line, recently announced the firing of 8% of its workforce.
Hewlett Packard’s CEO announced he was going to “watch every penny and minimize all hiring”. In addition, he said, existing head count plans are “unaffordable given the pressures on our business”. This all was code for more layoffs coming.
In my mind that’s three pretty big tech companies that will not be putting on a full court press at a college job fair.
As a matter of fact, tens of thousands have been and will continue to be let go in the domestic world of technology.
It would seem that investment and talent, infrastructure, and research & development has taken a backseat to share buyback and share appreciation all for the benefit of the top 1% and their 20% supporters.
So who really is being misguided, the lover of the physical, social and cultural development of humans (anthropology) or the lover of software, hardware and the applications thereof (technology)?
Perhaps both are being sold a bill of goods.
We’ve come a long way from
Plastics, Mrs. Robinson.