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Whafa, you appear to simply not understand the barriers to entry for many professions. There is no "crappy starter job" someone can take to get into education without a degree.*

I was originally responding to this comment of yours:

Until these things start providing diplomas, people will still be forced to spend a fortune on traditional forms of education.

I'm sorry but that's just wrong and I gave you an example. Nobody forces anybody to spend a fortune on traditional forms of education. You appear to simply not understand that there is a universe of employment outside the system of degrees and debt, that is accessible to anyone with the motivation to get into college to begin with.

MOOCs, if they are to be a successful alternative (instead of just something supplemental), need to be recognized by TPTB.

"TPTB" is an invention in your mind. Now, if your point is that to become a surgeon a person has to go through expensive, rigorous and lengthy secondary education, I absolutely agree and that's how it should be. Incurring debt for future gains is a business decision that I posit the majority of people are not qualified to make ever (just look at how many businesses fail), and certainly not at 18 years. But for every hospital hiring a new surgeon, there are 1000 (maybe more) small businesses who will absolutely hire a kid out of high school, for low wages (and no debt) to get started on building a successful life.

I applaud you for your accomplishments but not everyone wants to support their family by working in a cafe while they wait for their next professional opportunity.

I thought we were talking about kids out of high school. But thank you. I really don't think I did anything I wouldn't expect out of any other thoughtful person. And if you're not a thoughtful person then you don't belong in college to begin with.

Kids coming up these days have opportunities that make me green with envy. For christ's sake, I used a dot-matrix printer to print my papers, and a card catalog with *paper index cards* and moldy library books to research them! The amount of information that has become available, for practically nothing, in just the last 10 years, for consumption on your cell phone no less, is staggering.

*Some states are creating or have created limited programs for certain individuals to get into the field easier based on previous job experience and previous formal education.

This trend is only going to continue. "TPTB" are never going to let a heart surgeon walk in from off the street with a blog about his self-taught talents, and rightly so, but I think (certainly, I hope) we are finally getting to the end of the formal education bubble in this country.
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