I commented earlier in the week on John Edwards’ proposal for a yet another federal boondoggle called “College for Everyone,” noting that half the people in college now shouldn’t be there. A correspondent who describes himself as a “lifelong corporate recruiter” says I was being too generous:
it’s my firm experience [and] educated opinion that almost a reasonably intelligent high school grad with four years of stable experience working at McDonalds or Wal-Mart is a far more valuable candidates for an “entry level” corporate positions than almost all liberal arts college grads. An intelligent high school grad with 4 years of stable experience in an office environment doing even something basic like data entry or customer service is on a yet higher plane, at least as far as usefulness and potential in the world of work is concerned. Give him or her a healthy reading habit (even if he never advances beyond Harry Potter, Larry Niven, either of the Kellermans and Tom Clancy) and his four years at McDonalds will result in a far better education than almost all colleges currently deliver.
(The Hamburger University reference was to McDonald’s corporate training center.)