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Photo by Alisa Anton on Unsplash

Let’s say you have a million dollars to invest. And, you decide to invest it in tech start-ups. Specifically, companies developing online platforms for learning. Alternatives to college. Designed for the 21st Century.

You want to see a return on your investment. So, what do you do?

One strategy would be to check in on company operations. Make sure the company is maximizing your investment by building a great product. That fully delivers on its promise.

Or, I guess, you could also spend your time maligning your competition — traditional colleges. Get out there on social media. Tweet things like, “higher education is missing in action.” …

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Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash

Once you start working, you’ll notice similarities between work and school. There’s a dress code, you have to be on time, and much like a teacher, your manager assigns you work.

There are differences too. Like the fact that you get a paycheck at work. And, if you’re tardy too many times, they may not want you back.

One other big difference, one that you may not notice right away, is this — school is all about discovering what you can do. While, work is all about proving what you’ve done.

Let me explain.

From the moment you started school, you’ve been surrounded by people who believe you have potential. Potential to learn. Potential to do. The entire mission (with the exception of those standardized tests) has been to teach you how to learn. To teach you how to take what you already know and use it to build connections. Generating even more knowledge. So that once your formal education ends, you can continue learning and doing throughout your life. …

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Photo by Marten Bjork on Unsplash

Often, I’ll encourage you to listen to the grownups around you. We’ve been alive longer. Learned many lessons. Some even the hard way. So, all that experience makes us perfect mentors for your transition into adulthood.

But, there’s one thing in particular that you should know about us. We have a pretty unhealthy relationship with work. Sure, you may hear us say we hate our jobs. Or, we may complain about our bosses. But, the truth is, we’re obsessed with work. Completely preoccupied with increasing our own productive capacity.

Earlier this year, a writer with The Atlantic, Derek Thompson, wrote a whole piece about this. …

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Photo by Helloquence on Unsplash

So, what are you gonna do this summer?

Too early to start thinking about that? Since we’ve yet to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Well, if you’re in the market for an internship, then now is precisely the time to start thinking about Summer 2020. The internship hiring cycle has begun.

What, exactly, is an internship? Simply speaking it’s a job. Designed to give you work experience and training. Broadly speaking, it should be a paid job. Whether an internship can legally be unpaid requires an analysis under a seven-point test. …

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Photo by Azmathulla Shaik on Unsplash

What are your plans? After you graduate?

Despite the fact that I can’t actually hear you, I’m pretty confident most of you mentioned “get a good job.”

Ultimately, that’s the endgame, right? A job. Preferably a good one. Solid pay, full benefits, and opportunities for advancement.

This focus on getting a good job, in a time when good jobs seem scarce, is so intense that it’s reshaping how people think about education. There’s a tremendous emphasis on skills. Whether they’re described as 21st Century skills, future ready skills, or essential skills, the message seems clear. …

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Photo by Jelleke Vanooteghem on Unsplash

I made a mistake.

A pretty big one in my mind.

A mistake big enough for the world to see on Twitter.

It’s not the first time I’ve made a mistake. Just the first time on Twitter. I’m sure it will happen again.

It wasn’t fun.

While no one directly called me out, I had suspected something I said hadn’t been clear. And, my mind just wouldn’t let it go. Then I discovered I had been blocked. By someone I respected. That’s how I knew I needed to do more than struggle with my own suspicions.

So, what did I do? …

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Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

Don’t take it personally, it’s just business.

If you haven’t heard this yet, you will. Just wait. Wait until you start applying for jobs.

Anytime there’s picking and choosing of people in the world of work, those doing the picking and choosing will be quick to point out, to those not getting picked or chosen, that it’s not personal. They’re just doing their job.

If you’re the recipient of this message, here’s exactly what’s gonna happen.

First, it’s going to feel personal. Everything about it will absolutely, positively, without a doubt, feel personal.

But, then, when the “it’s not personal” sinks into your brain, that narrator voice in your head, you know the one, starts telling you to “get over it,” “move on,” “quit being such a baby.” …

What if I told you I hold the key? I know the secrets. I know exactly what you need to do to land your dream job.

Then, what if I told you that I’d share it all with you. For free?

Once you’re on my website for the freebies, I then tell you that I reveal even better, more strategic secrets in my book. And look, there’s a picture of my book. With a link to Amazon.

What would you do?

I’ll tell you what I’d do, if I were you. …

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Photo by Lianhao Qu on Unsplash

Do you care about your privacy? What about security? I’m willing to bet you do.

I bet you appreciate doors and curtains. I bet you’re grateful for locks and latches. When you appreciate these things, is it because they provide security? Or privacy? Or both?

Interesting questions. Ones you should think about. Why? Because you may be giving up some of your privacy in exchange for greater security. It’s like taking down the curtains in your home in exchange for more locks on your door.

And, here’s the thing you really need to know. This trade-off may be happening without you even knowing. How? Because some business are selling promises of security to your school. And, your school may be buying. …

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Photo by Aliyah Jamous on Unsplash

Once again, some of the adults are acting like children.

Be glad you’re in school. You’re missing all this nonsense.

What’s being argued about this week? Whether Elizabeth Warren lied. About being fired. For being pregnant. Over 40 years ago.

Yep. Adults are literally yelling at other adults for pointing out that once upon a (not too long ago) time, women actually lost jobs for carrying on the human race.

Here’s just a bit of context to help you understand. …


Molly Snyder

Helping students think critically about work. Easing the transition from education to employment.

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