Carol challenged me to post quotes for three days and nominate others to do the same along the way. If you read my post from yesterday you’ll know I’m breaking that rule about nominating others. I would, of course, enjoy reading quotes you’ve found…so if you decide to join this challenge let me know!
So…here’s quote #2:
Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school. – Albert Einstein
This one struck me because, as some of you know, I have three degrees. I like to spread school out, so though I went to undergraduate at Michigan State right after high school, I waited ten years to go back to school for my MBA from the University of Michigan – Flint. I did that while I was working full time and let me tell you I have no idea how I managed. I met some great people during the three year program, but I never really used any of it to advance my career. I graduated during a recession and was just lucky I had a job at all.
I waited more than 20 years to go back to school again. This time I was 50 and gave up my long time and lucrative career in mortgage banking to get a graduate degree in Information (otherwise known as Library Science.) from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. I learned a ton, met even more really great people, and hoped I’d find work in a library near home. It didn’t turn out that way. I graduated in another recession and libraries were cutting budgets and letting employees go. I worked for almost a year in a library, but that was it. Back to the bank I went.
So what did I get out of all those extra years in school? Lots of friends. Great memories. A wider band of experience on which to base critical thinking. A bigger vision of the world. Fun.
In the end, it turns out, I just loved being in school. And if I could afford it I’d go back again. For me it’s not the degree so much as the experience of being with young people, talking about new things, expanding my idea of what is normal in the world today.
So I can’t say I agree with Mr. Einstein. I think education can be gotten in school…it just might not be the stuff on the syllabus or in the articles or lectures scheduled. It just might be that real education is the sum of the total experience.
It was that way for me. And I don’t regret any of it.