Steve Jobs dropped out of Reed College and went on to do big things with Apple, while Mark Zuckerberg quit Harvard and led Facebook to what it is today.
The list of celebrity dropouts throughout time includes Ellen Degeneres, Brad Pitt, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Abraham Lincoln, Coco Chanel and many more.
Education is certainly important, but thousands of successful people never went on to pursue a college degree or graduate school, and of those who did, many never practiced what they learned at school, despite attending some of the best colleges and universities.
The good news, however, is that a number of companies today don’t even care about their employees’ grades and educational background.
In an interview with The New York Times, Google’s head of people operations, Laszlo Bock, revealed what the company looks for when hiring, and surprisingly, it was not credentials.
The company, known for operating in the technology sector for over a decade, believes that graduates from top-notch schools could lack humility and the ability to embrace other people’s ideas despite them being better than their own.
“It’s 'intellectual humility.' Without humility, you are unable to learn,” Bock said. “Successful bright people rarely experience failure, and so they don’t learn how to learn from that failure.”
He went on to add that people who make it into the “real world” without college are the ones big companies should look for, since they possess actual talent. “When you look at people who don’t go to school and make their way in the world, those are exceptional human beings. And we should do everything we can to find those people.”
Moreover, IQ does not determine learning ability and surely the latter should be preferred over the former.
Attending school and a higher education program can no doubt yield you plenty of knowledge about various subjects, but how much of it do you really apply at work?
The bookish knowledge imparted during hours of classes contribute to only a small percentage of what is required at a job, while the larger chunk of work life is based on coming up with customized solutions, thinking out of the box and crisis management. A person’s ability to deal with others and adapt to a variety of situations determines their success in the long run as compared to knowledge they gain in class that could’ve simply been Googled.
Not going to college in today's day and age, when education is given so much importance, sounds crazy. However, considering what Bock states, it turns out dropping out might actually do you a lot of good.
Maybe, after all, this is why many successful people are dropouts from college, and the ones who do end up getting higher education are not able to apply much of their learning in their professional life. However, it must be noted that, like with most things, this cannot be generalized, and each person may have a different experience.