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Old 06-28-2012, 11:43 AM   #151
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I used to TA a required class designed to assess the skills of the incoming class and set the expectation for college level writing and research. I can say that for the majority, how they were writing and citing sources (and what sources they thought were appropriate) demonstrated a big gap between what they were demonstrating they learned in high school and what we expected in college. The students didn't write full papers for me, but practiced writing abstracts, demonstrated various types of citation (mostly MLA and APA), learned how to actually use the library and how to obtain materials from other libraries via ILL, how to access and use research databases, etc. This was a required 100-level 2 credit course (once a week lecture and once a week option lab staffed by me where they could ask for help) and all the students assumed it was an easy A. I'm not even a Nazi grader but very few of my students got As. Many could not write a formulaic 5-paragraph short essay with a topic sentence or thought wikipedia was an appropriate source. One of my best students was a boy from Sudan (one of the Lost Boys). He spent a lot of time in the optional lab because the language barrier prevented him from picking up the material during the lecture. He certainly never grew up with the technology and probably didn't even go to high school but because he actually applied himself during college he ended up doing fine, it just took a little longer.

Of course this is just a general observation and doesn't take into account the quality of the high school education and the standards of the college. The college has a high-90s% acceptance rate (because we need the money and enrollment has declined) but also a high drop out and transfer rate. This is not a small community college; the academic standards are high and even going to the best high school doesn't mean one can coast. I also noticed that my smartest friends often did the poorest in college because they couldn't keep up with the volume of work even though the material might have been beneath them.
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Old 06-28-2012, 12:32 PM   #152
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I went to college for several reasons, but one is specifically so that if LadyFreckles and I are up for a job, I will get if.
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:20 PM   #153
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Of course this is just a general observation and doesn't take into account the quality of the high school education and the standards of the college. The college has a high-90s% acceptance rate (because we need the money and enrollment has declined) but also a high drop out and transfer rate. This is not a small community college; the academic standards are high and even going to the best high school doesn't mean one can coast. I also noticed that my smartest friends often did the poorest in college because they couldn't keep up with the volume of work even though the material might have been beneath them.
Yeah, my point isn't necessarily that you can't be challenged in college. It was that it really depends on the school you go to and there are a lot of bad/poor programs out there that people don't realize. That's why I don't think "well at least they went to college!" should be the be all end all for hiring somebody.

I had an issue with the work load. It wasn't that I had too much work, but I'd often question the point of that work. People learn in different ways. I don't think it's always "smarter" people that struggle with this but some people don't function well in a typical schooling environment. My friend worded it as "suffering through the system". People try to look down on the ones who suffer through college or education systems and think they're just less capable but I think they just need a different kind of learning. It doesn't really have anything to do with their work ethic.

During my stint in public high school the teacher would give us pages upon pages of math problems every night--like the 100 multiplication tables in elementary school but more--and say the point of it was to help us memorize everything. I never did it and my grades suffered for that (60% of grade was homework). That's just not how I learn. I can't do 100 math problems to learn math and "instill it in my brain". The teacher at the private school had a different approach, spending time getting us to understand the equations and really breaking it down so we could explain WHY a formula would be carried out a certain way rather than just doing it. That was much more beneficial to me.

In college I had some teachers like my private school teachers, and some like the high school ones. They'd give hours of meaningless work after every class that I just had to grit my teeth and do. It didn't really teach me work ethic because I have no problem doing something mundane if I'm paid to do it (and for work I've had to do this many times)--but when I'm paying someone for an education and they force me to do really repetitive projects/worksheets I start getting irritated. I didn't pay several grand per class just for that kind of experience.


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My university doesn't have a General Studies major, so I can't comment on that in particular. I would still caution you not to make gross generalizations about majors. I will agree that if someone doesn't know what they want to study, a gap year or two can be very helpful. I also don't believe college isn't for everyone. There are of course kids in college that aren't seeking knowledge. However, I really do think, someone like you would thrive in the right college environment.
Oh I definitely would. I made the distinction that the school I was going to was not the right school for me and that I'd go back to college when I had more freedom to go to a school of my choosing with a program I found that I flourished in. I think it's usually the community colleges that have the general studies major, but a I've seen a couple of regular colleges with them as well. The private college I went to did not have it as a major.

I had to go on medical leave at my college and stop classes in the middle of a semester, and when I went to come back the college was giving me a lot of problems and trying to make me jump through hoops. That in the end is what made my decision to "drop out" for the time being for me (I didn't want to try transferring to another school).

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I will agree with this. I didn't study in high school, as I didn't really have to. College was where I learned my time management skills. I use those daily.
My hardest college course was a philosophy class. I think that was the one course that really taught me something. I had a brilliant professor (at a community college, no less) who was able to spend an entire lecture teaching us something unbiased, and then at the end he'd surprise us and turn everything around by pointing out the flaws in that philosophy. That was a class that required a seventy page project handed in at the end of the semester. You were required to write detailed notes about each philosophy and then show that you have an understanding of that philosophy by applying it to something in the modern world in a two page essay.

I aced it but I spent more time on that class than any of my other classes that semester. And that was a class I was just taking for fun and not for what I thought my major was.

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I think that statement just came across as a bit arrogant. I don't think you are arrogant. I try not to compare my intelligence to my friends, but yeah I own being a
I think part of it comes from the fact that I came from a very backwards town and still have friends from there. The friends I've made from school and outside of town are usually the more intelligent ones. The reason I've even taken up notice is when discussing current issues and medical things and hearing the things some of my friends have said about that stuff.

There are some people who just don't like to think about things like politics, philosophy, literature etc and that's fine. I like those people because I find they tone me down and give me a mental break. We talk about things like shows, cars, fashion, etc. But when it comes to the real subjects, that's where the differences are. I have some very superstitious friends and I find them to be a bit silly, but I usually just ignore it unless they ask me for my opinion. In my hometown, which was kind of a country/small town, people just think differently. Coming to terms with that was really hard for me.


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I have to disagree with the first statement. Out of high school, yes I could write a mean five paragraph essay, but my writing style and grammar improved in college. My Freshman writing classes kicked my ass. I also believe that the additional 4 years of reading really expanded my frame of reference. Now, to be fair I was in an honors program at a top tier university, but I believe you can find engaging and enlightening classes at any college/university. It may just require a bit more searching.
I love reading. When I was in high school I took English Composition 101, and that was the one class I think that challenged my grammar. I liked to write in 2nd person and the course I was taking emphasized banning that entirely. It's not just a good university, it's also about having a good program within that university. There are some "average" universities that have stellar programs within them (my friend's college wasn't really great for the other subjects, but their literature program was incredible).


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Lastly, you should be proud of being intelligent. And you are most certainly correct that there is a difference between intelligence and wisdom. I think your presence on this sub forum is most welcome. I love people who can debate well.
Thanks. I hope I can learn a lot more here.
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:40 PM   #154
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(at a community college, no less)
Wait... are you making all of these generalizations about college from your experience at a community college?
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:15 PM   #155
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As I've said multiple times in the past, I went to both a private college and a community college. At the same time. I was planning to knock out the rest of my prerequisites at the community college for cheaper while taking more interest-specific courses at the private one. But I ended up moving cross country and transferring to college here (which I hated), so that plan didn't fully work out.
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:32 PM   #156
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Forgive me if I'm summarizing a bit too much, but it seems to me like you have responded to being painted with broad strokes by painting others with broad strokes?

I understand the frustration that you feel, the idea that you are being undervalued because you did not graduate from a university, that you could do these things without making such a large investment into something you don't find worthwhile or enjoyable. But your criticism of people who go and get degrees in liberal arts because they don't know what they want to do rings a bit hollow, because you know what? They are more job-eligible than you are. You want to hold it against employers, but one young bright woman (I have no reason to question your description of your own credentials, so I'll assume you are as intelligent as you say you are, even if this conversation hasn't shown you at your best since you are clearly a bit defensive of your own position and a bit bitter, I think it is fair to say) isn't going to change the system around. It's not going to be fair. They go through dozens, even hundreds of applications for various positions at these companies. You are a number in a stack. Your résumé needs to stick out in a positive way. More than likely, if you lack a bachelor's degree, it's going to stick out in a negative way.

I have read many of your posts in this thread (not all of them, I have been at work most of today). At one point, you complained about the work that you were doing in the classroom, saying that you "didn't see the point." While I know you later stated that you were fine with busy work "as long as you were getting paid," you still need to understand that nearly everything you do in life is going to come with work you find pointless, or at least unnecessary. That includes your education. Not every teacher is going to change your life or challenge you to think in new ways. It comes with a territory: namely, being more prepared for the job market.

I graduate in a year. I have plunked down nearly a hundred thousand dollars at a public university to get a degree. And, without trying to sound harsh, I think it would be absurd for a future employer to hire someone without a degree over me. And most employers think that way as well.
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:36 PM   #157
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I am not going to hire you because of all your admitted alcohol abuse and pot consumption.

also, I checked your fb.






just kidding



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Old 06-28-2012, 04:49 PM   #158
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I am not going to hire you because of all your admitted alcohol abuse and pot consumption.

also, I checked your fb.






just kidding



At the risk of seeming like a fun-killer by not playing along, it should be noted that I tried marijuana only a few times years ago when I started college, and simply did not like it. I have no problems with it and think it should be legalized, but I don't find it fun and haven't had it in years.

Now the drinking I cannot defend. I thought that turning 21 would possibly make me less inclined to binge drink, but I have only become a heavier drinker now that the destinations to do so are endless. Fuck, it's a costly habit.

At least I don't smoke cigarettes.
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:58 PM   #159
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Forgive me if I'm summarizing a bit too much, but it seems to me like you have responded to being painted with broad strokes by painting others with broad strokes?
This would be accurate.

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I understand the frustration that you feel, the idea that you are being undervalued because you did not graduate from a university, that you could do these things without making such a large investment into something you don't find worthwhile or enjoyable. But your criticism of people who go and get degrees in liberal arts because they don't know what they want to do rings a bit hollow, because you know what? They are more job-eligible than you are.
For some reason in my earlier posts I kept using a plural when I meant a singular (possibly because my cc had multiple variations of the "general studies" degree). However, a liberal arts: general studies degree is not the same as another college degree. It just isn't. It's high school 2.0 if you look at the curriculum. Now, communications and literature majors are fine, as are the other lib arts variations, but to say that a degree that reads like a high school curriculum makes someone better qualified for a job is ridiculous.


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You want to hold it against employers, but one young bright woman isn't going to change the system around. It's not going to be fair. They go through dozens, even hundreds of applications for various positions at these companies. You are a number in a stack. Your résumé needs to stick out in a positive way. More than likely, if you lack a bachelor's degree, it's going to stick out in a negative way.
That is the reason I try to raise awareness. If people just accept that this is "the way things are" nothing is ever going to change. I got lucky enough to get my job, but not before I spent a long time being rejected for mundane jobs. I can accept that a manager, or even a receptionist might need either experience or college experience, but part-time sales positions should not, nor should jobs in the helpdesk field (especially when the applicant has hands on experience like myself). Not only that, but people who worked hard in college and are thousands upon thousands of dollars in debt (sometimes hundreds of thousands) are now just barely meeting the requirements to flip burgers. Something just isn't right in the job world and the education world right now and as long as people ignore it it will just get worse.

No social revolution ever got started because people just sat around thinking "it is what it is".

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At one point, you complained about the work that you were doing in the classroom, saying that you "didn't see the point." While I know you later stated that you were fine with busy work "as long as you were getting paid," you still need to understand that nearly everything you do in life is going to come with work you find pointless, or at least unnecessary. That includes your education. Not every teacher is going to change your life or challenge you to think in new ways. It comes with a territory: namely, being more prepared for the job market.
I stated that within the same post. I have never had an issue doing mundane tasks at work. But if I'm paying out the caboose for an "education" I don't want to see poorly designed homework. I don't think that's unrealistic of me or too much to ask for when the average college is $20,000 a year now. I could take the $80,000+ spent on college and make a down payment on a house, buy a fancy mercedes, invest in a business startup, invest in stocks, start a family, travel the world, etc. If I've decided to put that towards education, IMO it should actually challenge me. I expect that kind of stuff from a cheap community college, but when I started seeing it at what's considered to be a "good" private school, that was a slap in the face.

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I graduate in a year. I have plunked down nearly a hundred thousand dollars at a public university to get a degree. And, without trying to sound harsh, I think it would be absurd for a future employer to hire someone without a degree over me. And most employers think that way as well.
Depends on the field. If my fiance (software engineer) was turned down for someone without a degree it would be absolutely absurd. But if it was an entry level minimum wage position, then no. People need those jobs. And people who paid that kind of money for schooling deserve a lot better.
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Old 06-28-2012, 05:15 PM   #160
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For some reason in my earlier posts I kept using a plural when I meant a singular (possibly because my cc had multiple variations of the "general studies" degree). However, a liberal arts: general studies degree is not the same as another college degree. It just isn't. It's high school 2.0 if you look at the curriculum. Now, communications and literature majors are fine, as are the other lib arts variations, but to say that a degree that reads like a high school curriculum makes someone better qualified for a job is ridiculous.
I know that, you have made it abundantly clear. What I am saying: if you are going up against someone with the same amount of experience PLUS a liberal arts degree, that person should probably get that job unless you are a way better interview. They are more qualified. Period. It may not have the same weight as a degree in a more specified field, but it's still a hell of a lot better than your highest degree being your high school diploma.

And honestly? That's the way it should be.
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That is the reason I try to raise awareness. If people just accept that this is "the way things are" nothing is ever going to change. I got lucky enough to get my job, but not before I spent a long time being rejected for mundane jobs. I can accept that a manager, or even a receptionist might need either experience or college experience, but part-time sales positions should not, nor should jobs in the helpdesk field (especially when the applicant has hands on experience like myself). Not only that, but people who worked hard in college and are thousands upon thousands of dollars in debt (sometimes hundreds of thousands) are now just barely meeting the requirements to flip burgers. Something just isn't right in the job world and the education world right now and as long as people ignore it it will just get worse.

No social revolution ever got started because people just sat around thinking "it is what it is".
You're really selling yourself short then. Few employers will have the time to care that you are an idealogue who objects to the concept of higher education as we know it in this country. They're just going to hire the more qualified person.

And a social revolution? There aren't enough people objecting to college to call it that. The only social revolution this country needs (s far as higher education is concerned) is to lower the costs of college, which is a far cry from what you are suggesting. I'd be all on board for that, considering I go to the most expensive public university in history.
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I stated that within the same post. I have never had an issue doing mundane tasks at work. But if I'm paying out the caboose for an "education" I don't want to see poorly designed homework. I don't think that's unrealistic of me or too much to ask for when the average college is $20,000 a year now. I could take the $80,000+ spent on college and make a down payment on a house, buy a fancy mercedes, invest in a business startup, invest in stocks, start a family, travel the world, etc. If I've decided to put that towards education, IMO it should actually challenge me. I expect that kind of stuff from a cheap community college, but when I started seeing it at what's considered to be a "good" private school, that was a slap in the face.
The idea that one or two bad teachers would turn you off from the experience entirely is kind of ridiculous. They can't all be winners. You seem to be a little too much of an idealist on this issue. More realism would help.
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Depends on the field. If my fiance was turned down for someone without a degree it would be absolutely absurd. But if it was an entry level minimum wage position, then no. People need those jobs. And people who paid that kind of money for schooling deserve a lot better.
Deserve has nothing to do with it.

They're not going to turn someone down for being overqualified. They're going to hire them.
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Old 06-28-2012, 05:49 PM   #161
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maybe the problem was you?
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Old 06-28-2012, 05:58 PM   #162
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I thought this was about smoking

I don't think it should be illegal. People know it's so bad for them, but it's highly addictive. Just like so many other things that people know are bad for them. I've smoked just a few times in my life, it was part of bigger self destructive patterns and stress. I'm still tempted, I still have a few old packs of cigarettes. In spite of having them at arm's length I haven't smoked in years. Now that secondhand smoke has been virtually eliminated compared to how it used to be, people should be legally allowed the choice to smoke-and helped to quit.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:09 PM   #163
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They're not going to turn someone down for being overqualified. They're going to hire them.
Depends. I work in IT and we have turned down overqualified people. It's not fun

Not sure if it matters but my earlier posts intended "liberal arts" to mean a liberal arts school, not a liberal arts degree. I don't like those mish-mash-make-your-own type degrees. I went to a liberal arts college but I have a degree in Business Communications. It's a liberal arts college because there is a required core curriculum, everyone has to meet core requirements regardless of their major/degree, but the degree program itself is not a random selection of courses. Because of this, some degrees end up being 5 or 5.5 years since you still need to take all the coursework for the degree program (and you have to have a high enough GPA from the core curriculum or you will not be accepted into your degree/major program). If you take the right courses in high school you can be exempt from parts of the core. I never took a language in college because I had taken enough in high school. I also tested out of having to take math just for the heck of it, though I ended up taking several math classes because of my degree/major. The dumbest thing about our core was that we had to take three PE classes. Other than that, the other courses were fine, some were interesting. I planned it right and finished the requirements for the core and degree after four years despite changing majors 5 times.
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:01 PM   #164
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I know that, you have made it abundantly clear. What I am saying: if you are going up against someone with the same amount of experience PLUS a liberal arts degree, that person should probably get that job unless you are a way better interview. They are more qualified. Period. It may not have the same weight as a degree in a more specified field, but it's still a hell of a lot better than your highest degree being your high school diploma.
Then we're agreeing and there's no disagreement there.

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You're really selling yourself short then. Few employers will have the time to care that you are an idealogue who objects to the concept of higher education as we know it in this country. They're just going to hire the more qualified person.

And a social revolution? There aren't enough people objecting to college to call it that. The only social revolution this country needs (s far as higher education is concerned) is to lower the costs of college, which is a far cry from what you are suggesting. I'd be all on board for that, considering I go to the most expensive public university in history.
That's exactly what I'm suggesting, actually. Something is wrong with the way college is being done. It's too expensive, the quality of education has gone way downhill (lower standards so more people can pass), many colleges with "average" programs are basically an extension of high school, not enough value is put on professors, etc. Yet college has ballooned in price. But part of the reason it's gotten like this is because people sat down and let it happen because of overvalue of the degree. Since everyone "had" to go to college, nobody bothered to question the rise in prices. It was "worth any cost". Even still today people just think "well I have to have a degree so I'll just do it even though I think the costs are ridiculous". Colleges are a business, they don't want to give up their profit margin.

I am not opposed to higher education and I never said I was. It just isn't the only option. I've also said that I'm going back to school.

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The idea that one or two bad teachers would turn you off from the experience entirely is kind of ridiculous. They can't all be winners. You seem to be a little too much of an idealist on this issue. More realism would help.
It was nine, not one or two.

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They're not going to turn someone down for being overqualified. They're going to hire them.
That happens all the time, actually, and it should (though sometimes it happens in the wrong areas). We don't need any more psychology majors serving starbucks. One of my friends was turned down in the IT world by four different employers for being too overqualified. Meanwhile, the work he was "qualified" to do kept saying "person MUST have a degree in IT". He doesn't have a degree, he just has 8 years of hands on experience, tons of certifications, and a very impressive resume. He was ruled out based on his lack of education alone by many employers, and by the ones that didn't care about education he was "over qualified".

But he did find a job eventually, interviewed with someone that wanted a college degree but managed to impress them enough to get the position. It took a long time for it to go down well, though. The reason he has the experience he did is because when he was 19 years old someone cut him a break and gave him a chance and hired him.

It's not just about over qualification though. Both ends of the spectrum need to be fixed. Retail stores need to realize that a degree is not a valid requirement to operate a cash register, and something needs to be done to create more jobs for those with degrees. In some fields it's really open and far less competitive than others. But in those other fields, it's so competitive that people will go five years after college before they get a job offer for something related to what they specialized in.

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Not sure if it matters but my earlier posts intended "liberal arts" to mean a liberal arts school, not a liberal arts degree. I don't like those mish-mash-make-your-own type degrees. I went to a liberal arts college but I have a degree in Business Communications.
I completely misunderstood you then and I sincerely apologize there. Yeah I have no beef with liberal arts colleges considering I went to one. It's just that "mix and match" degree that I don't like.

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If you take the right courses in high school you can be exempt from parts of the core. I never took a language in college because I had taken enough in high school. I also tested out of having to take math just for the heck of it, though I ended up taking several math classes because of my degree/major.
I tested out of science and math. They didn't let you test out of literature though (one of the colleges I got accepted into did test me out of it, but I didn't want to go to that school because it was far removed from home and I didn't want to stray too far). I tested out of math but when I go back to school the first thing I'm going to do is redo math because I love it.

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The dumbest thing about our core was that we had to take three PE classes. Other than that, the other courses were fine, some were interesting. I planned it right and finished the requirements for the core and degree after four years despite changing majors 5 times.
Every time you post you say something else that impresses me.
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Old 06-29-2012, 01:28 AM   #165
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I don't think that should be the focus of one's life.
What should be the main focus then?

Please don't bother in replying if you are going that the focus should be finding love.
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