Too many graduates?

Punch worried about overeducated, underemployed college graduates back in 1902.

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  1. I don’t understand? Hardly a week goes by without some Humanities professor or liberal arts graduate vigorously asserting that a fine liberal arts education is not suppose to provide job-skills.

    So how can they be underemployed? As for education, perhaps over-credentialed but education is a lifelong pursuit that a term in college can prime a student for the pursuit but cannot provide.

    “A man learns more about business in the first six months after his graduation than he does in his whole four years of college. But-and here is the “practical” result of his college work-he learns far more in those six months than if he had not gone to college. He has been trained to learn, and that, to all intents and purposes, is all the training he has received. To say that he has been trained to think is to say essentially that he has been trained to learn, but remember that it is impossible to teach a man to think. The power to think must be inherently his. All that the teacher can do is help him learn to order his thoughts-such as they are. ”

    So the “graduates” in the drawing are not necessarily underemployed and as for educated, their time in college, has prepared them to occupy their minds with “smart” thoughts instead of whatever the “uneducated” ponder while they exchange their labor for wages.