University Degrees are Losing Value in Silicon Valley

Silicon Valley
Written by Hassan Abbas

The giants of Silicon Valley are hiring people who do not have university studies, every day is more usual. It is not surprising, you will think. We’ve all heard how Bill Gates left Harvard University to start Microsoft or how Steve Jobs just spent six months at Reed College. Also, Sergei Brin and Larry Page left Stanford to start building “the universal search engine”.

The technological world has been cultivating for decades the idea that “the university and the creative genius do not get along”, but if we look at the workers of these big companies, we will realize that the vast majority of them left a university of an elite. That is something that has begun to change.

University Degrees are Losing Value in Silicon Valley

The talent is out there

Cale Guthrie Weissman published a story in Fast Company on this subject. About how companies are beginning to stop looking at the files and are beginning to notice, this time really, in the skills. “We’ve had a lot of success in the Bootcamps,” explained Sam Ladah of IBM. They have been doing it for years.

social network scene in which Zuckerberg hired programmers using a code, alcohol and speed competition reflected the technological world or was part of the startup mythology. After all, choosing the most versatile MIT developers is not exactly ” thinking outside the box .”

It is true that the technological world has particular characteristics in which the personal skills and resources available make a title not make a difference (or not always). That’s why it’s not uncommon for companies like Github, Intel or even the White House programs to look for these ‘personal skills’.

Silicon Valley

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Intel, for example, developed two programs for this: a scholarship program for high school students or students in the first years of the University; and a program called CODE 2040, especially focused on underrepresented minorities.

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Technology in front of the mirror

That perhaps has been the most important lesson that the technology industry has learned in these years: when looking at themselves in the mirror they have realized that the story they told, the disruptive meritocracy of talent and creativity, simply does not correspond to reality.

Silicon Valley

Yes, the great technologists have faced Trump’s immigration policies and have defended hundreds of their international employees. But even so, even with explicit policies towards diversity, IBM estimates that only between 10 and 15% of new hires meet these diverse requirements.

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Form for the future …

José Manuel Martínez, a law professor at Harvard, explained his point of view on university education in the pages of El País. Beyond hackneyed phrases and clichés like “no question is stupid”, Martínez said that the university education is too pigeon-holed.

“If you go to the Nasdaq – the American stock market – check that 75% of the companies did not exist 10 years ago The jobs of the future are not clear and that’s why specialization alone does not work anymore. very transversal, “he said with (apparent) conviction.

And it’s a central knot: according to a recent estimate from the US Department of Labor, it says there will be at least one million programming and development jobs unfilled by 2020.

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About the author

Hassan Abbas

Tech enthusiast with too many items on his wish-list and not nearly enough money! Specializing in all things tech, with a slight Apple bent he has been writing for various blogs for the best part of (too many) years

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