Why Being a School Dropout is no More an Excuse for Not Succeeding

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I have nothing against education. But at times, education gives people false confidence. It makes people relax, trusting in the power of their certificates rather than in working hard. – Rasaq Okoya.

School Dropout! School Dropout! School Dropout! The bygone days of teeth gnashing are here again.

For donkey years now, the tertiary education system has mainly succeeded in graduating “Kowtow Employees”, lacking the killer instincts of astute inventors and business moguls. Over the years, immaterial emphasis had been laid on the need for students to attend university to obtain good grades in order to get a safe and secure job. These supposedly brainy students in most cases have ended up working for school dropouts whose ideas about business were ahead of their time. While it is important to obtain a university degree, such a degree is no guarantee to surviving the real, knotty world.
Before the dawn of the 21st century, the advise-“go to the university; burn the midnight oil and obtain good grades” can be said to have been priceless. Such advise in today’s internet-driven world is antiquated, archaic and should be jettisoned. This is because so many astute school dropouts have proven beyond reasonable doubt that it doesn’t take a university degree to succeed in the 21st century internet-driven world.
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For so many decades now, school dropouts with a touch of genius have taken the world by storm, in creating multi-billion dollar industries that have revolutionized the face of the business world. A school dropout like Robert T.  Kiyosaki, the Japanese-American who fastidiously pursued his dream of financial freedom and became a millionaire before the age of 30 by establishing a company that produced the first Velcro Surfer Wallet.

Before the industrial revolution which took place precisely in Britain, the owners of land were the key economic players within the sovereign nation. This was because, land was the “cash cow” of the pre-industrial revolution economy. With the advent of the industrial revolution, attention was shifted to the use of machines in the production process, and up until now, industrial machines have continued to play important roles in today’s economy of the world. Colossal industry players have therefore, determined the direction of public policies in so many countries of the world. With the internet added to the scheme of things and making the entire world a Global Village, the key to success in the 21st century has therefore moved from only the possession of land in pre-industrial revolution society and from only the ownership of industry in the post-industrial revolution era to include a working knowledge of information and communications technology. Astute school  dropouts have therefore leveraged on the internet to created previously unimagined wealth.

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The time has come for school dropouts to stop agonizing about their non possession of university degrees as the reason for not standing out. Do School Dropouts regret dropping out of school? Yes, most times they do. But come to think of it, isn’t it better to be a self made school dropout like Bill Gates, Michael Dell, Steve Jobs, Ted Turner and Orji Uzor Kalu, who pursued their ideas to logical conclusions, and made it big?

Earlier entrepreneurs such as Thomas Edison and Henry Ford were also school dropouts. I strongly believe that all these school dropouts saw the real word of business as a more promising place to get their world business  experience. These men became monster honey bees, continuously influencing the world of business.  Rather than rely on your university degree and moving from office to office in search of paid employment like a scalar quantity itinerant, isn’t it better to transform that unique talent in you into a refined skill that solves peoples’ pressing needs – even if it’s as a school dropout?

It should be your choice to determine what is important, not a university professor, not a dean, not a faculty committee. Of all the emphasis by academicians on the need to go to college, obtain good grades and get for yourself a safe and secure job, how many university professors own a university? Your guess is as good as mine. I’m a firm believer that most university students would be better off being school dropouts, investing the money they now spend on university, then take the four years they would have spent on university and travel, work, play and spend time with smart people talking about important things. You don’t need to acquire a university degree to be successful. Even if you go to university for awhile, you don’t need to graduate to be successful. As a School Dropout, you can be successful if you are ready to nurture the ideas inherent in you.

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Look inwards and discover that unique idea/talent in you, nurture it into a refined skill, and be the next school dropout to create a multi-million dollar industry. A survey conducted by Bloomberg in 2010 showed that the school of hard knocks was the number one source (tied with the university of California) for CEOs of S&P 500 companies. Harvard was the #3 source(along with the universities of Texas, Missouri and Wisconsin). The school of  hard knocks features CEOs who never graduated from college. Of the top 400 richest Americans in 2011, 27 graduated from high school, but did not attend college. Another 36 were School/College Dropouts.- John  Kremer,2016.

Sharon Daniels, author of “The Word of Truth” came to the conclusion that eventually, he could not find real knowledge in academic life, only hierarchies of knowledge that led, ultimately to more hierarchies, not to more knowledge. He began to see university learning as limited, human and relative. He continued… What was seen as absolutely up-to-date did not consider the infinite and timeless. Pedagogically, schools teach students to obey. They go against the things astute school dropouts want students to know. It is therefore not strange that schools are pressure cookers were bored students meet bored teachers. Modern education thus seems a wasted investment. It has failed to deliver the goods we needed the most… creative solutions to the pressing and challenging questions of our time.

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Don’t misunderstand me. Much of the knowledge I acquired in school was valuable. However, the school did not teach me the street-wise skills needed to stand out as an entrepreneur. Instead, the traditional school taught me the skills to be an employee. It doesn’t pay much to be a job seeking bulldozer with a university degree.

Below are genuine reasons why being a school dropout is no longer an excuse for not succeeding:

1) Offsetting that million-naira income discrepancy is the #700,000 four-year cost of tuition, fees, books, room and board at a public school, #2,000,000 at a private university-even after financial aids, grants and scholarship. Add all these to the equation, and university graduates don’t even surpass high school graduates in lifetime income up until 33 years of age on the average.

2) University graduates don’t necessary make more than school dropouts, especially when the cost of attending University is factored into the equation.

3) Why not invest what it would had cost you to attend university into a savings account. By the time you retire, you’ll have earned more than most university graduates.

4) Universities no longer teach much useful skills. You will be better off learning software programming skills at a tech school, or on the job training as a school dropout.

5) The school dropouts hall of fame includes many successful, rich and talented people who either never attended college at all, or never graduated.

6) The cost of graduating from the university is now well over #700,000. Couldn’t you invest that money as a school dropout in far better ways?

7) As a school dropout, take the years you would have spent going to college, and spend one year traveling the world- the best education any money could buy. Spend the next few years working a variety of internships – even for low pay, to earn experience and get the kind of working experience a university can never provide.

8) If you’re a conservative or liberal thinker, you would want to avoid the four years brainwashing in the socialist viewpoint of most university professors. If you are one of the 1%, why expose yourself to the thinking of the 99% fuddy-duddy elite?

9) University education is way over-priced. You could learn more as a school dropout, by paying a good tutor to teach you what you need to know to be successful in business and in real life.

10) Universities doesn’t really teach you success principles. They teach you facts. They don’t teach you how to think.

11) Tests. Test that doesn’t measure real knowledge of school dropouts.

12) Research papers that have no connection to real life.

13) Expensive textbooks. Overpriced and often biased.

14) Sexual pressure- nothing like putting 19,000 youthful people together to get the wrong kind of sexual pressure. Rape on university campuses is epidemic. Date-rape is almost given.

15) Do you really need another reason?

In conclusion, being a school dropout can no longer be the reason for not succeeding. Our present world is a global village…global in the sense that it is now a revolutionary process that represents the intermingling of sociocultural, political and economic forces across national boundaries, that has lead to a presentation of what now looks like a global pattern and purpose. What is true for one nation can also be true for another nation, because principles are universal.  You can be a success story as a school dropout. If school dropouts like Bill Gates, Michael Dell, Henry Ford and Orji Uzor Kalu succeeded, then nothing stops you as a School Dropout from doing same.

I would like to end on this note, that when we begin to see university education as limiting in the real sense of creativity, unemployment will cease to bedevil us as a people.

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