I graduated from (and even taught at) some of the most prestigious universities in the U.S. While I enjoy keeping up with my network of old college chums, I question how relevant those connections have really been to my career.
This may sound strange, but the vibe I get from teaching at a community college is-- that's where the future of our society lies. While a few of the students are attending "the 13th grade", the overwhelming majority are more mature adults or even advanced high school
students taking a different route
through higher education than I and my college chums took 35 years ago. And, unlike my college chums and I, the community college students aren't just looking to join the same social class and pursue the same careers their parents had.
The world changes. The economy changes. Educational institutions, and the mindsets of parents and students, change much more slowly.
I disagree that the people on this discussion board are predominately hippies. Hippies lived in the 1960's. That was two-- count 'em-- two generations ago. We're people who are pursuing (or thinking about pursuing) an alternative lifestyle that values freedom, travel, relationships, time, and creativity more than income
, prestige, and social status. Many, if not most of us, have gotten to this point after high-achieving careers in more traditional walks of life. But those careers and achievements aren't necessarily important to us nowadays. We value the company and input of the 22-year old doing this as a lark on a micro-budget just as much as we value the company of the retired multi-millionaire.
Times change. This discussion board strikes me as another place that has the vibe of the future to it. And (I really, really don't mean this as an attack) expensive private schools, Ivy League universities, and jobs on Wall Street don't really give me that vibe.