Employers Toss Out Degree Requirements As College Costs Rise | Stephanie Ruhle | MSNBC 1

Employers Toss Out Degree Requirements As College Costs Rise | Stephanie Ruhle | MSNBC


The price tag on a college degree continues to rise, and more companies say the cost isn't worth it to have a successful career. Stephanie Ruhle reports on employers' recent moves to abandon degree requirements and even pay to train workers without college educations. Northeastern University Executive Professor of Educational Policy Sean Gallagher and Vice President of Grow with Google Lisa Gevelber join to discuss the shift. Aired on 04/22/2021.
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Employers Toss Out Degree Requirements As College Costs Rise | Stephanie Ruhle | MSNBC


  1. If a position requires ‘interpersonal skills’ more than anything else … no college required, you cannot teach somebody to be interpersonally agile. It is intuitive by nature. People who are good at forming rapid connections ‘sense’ how to respond on the fly. Whether direct sales, customer service, or employee management/fulfillment. Who they are is more important … you can teach them the specifics.

    1. I’ve worked a bunch of jobs over the years. Employers almost always have a training period where they are getting you up to speed on how they want things done. Most of the jobs I’ve had should not have required an undergrad degree.

    2. @FDM 215 Ditto.

      Why do I need a Bachelors for an entry level minimum wage (industry related) job ?
      I have had positions over the years where my education and “job skills” were higher than those hiring me.
      In some cases I wound up being their boss.

      Go figure.

  2. I look forward to hearing the perspectives of college and university educators as well as board members. Why are they overcharging us and what do educators have to say about it? Also, how do they feel about the privatization of education? Generally it seems the liberal arts are being belittled: history, literature, writing, philosophy, sociology, psychology, creative arts are all important to our society. I hope to hear more from their defenders, not only from those who are effectively undermining these studies in the business community.

    1. You’re not getting overcharged. Tuition is expensive because government funding has decreased drastically over the past 30 years and universities simply have to charge more. It would be even worse if foreign students weren’t paying exhorbitant tuition compared to citizens. I agree with you completely about the liberal arts. We have become such a consumer society that we’re only concerned about whether or not your degree gets you a better job or more earning power, not about the ancillary benefits of critical thinking skills or having a more educated populace for example.

    2. @L B And yet some want to stop foreign students participating.
      Short sighted ignorance in my opinion.
      They don’t see who is actually paying in part for their “homegrown” education.
      Stay safe, healthy and educated.

  3. Health care is going up too. Soon deductibles will be so high we’ll all need a good bankruptcy lawyer in our contract.

    1. Here in Canada you can’t release any government debts like taxes owed either. Not sure about the United States though.

    2. Oh, believe me – some of us have had much longer than a minute that we’ve had to contemplate that very reality

  4. Unifying and destroying everything that makes humans weak should be a priority if you really want to get better. We still lack a cure.

    1. Unfortunately over time the college degree requirement became a lazy filter for so called ‘good jobs’ in office settings. Given that so many don’t care what your degree is in, it’s clear that they don’t really care about the degree!

  5. I feel like big corporations just want to break into that college money, but then again at least there’s a job waiting for you lol

  6. It depends on what career you want. Like you definitely need a degree if you’re going to be a doctor, lawyer or even engineer. As a current college student (accounting/mis major), I’m mostly going to college for the experience as well as networking. Plus I dont have to take out any loans so might as well get a degree if I’m not going into debt.

    If you know you’re going to go into debt but you still want to get a degree, I highly recommend going to Community College for 2 years and then transfer for the last 2 years. It’ll be cheaper and you might even be able to get scholarships. Back when I was in high school, I remember people looked down on community college but honestly it’s a smart option if you want to save money. Also apply to as many scholarships as you can, even if they’re only $500. Every penny counts.

    1. I agree getting my associates first at a 2 year college was a really good education. Just remember to go to a collage with a good transfer agreement with a 4 year university.

    2. I agree. I have fond memories of going to a Jr college. It was definitely cheaper and I took advantage of all the scholarships and grants I could get when I transferred to a University.

  7. Education is transformational. A four year degree transforms a person by the continuous landslide of of ideas and exposure to knowledge and teaching over 12 semesters. There is no substitute for it. If you want someone to really be able able to think on their feet and have some depth to draw on, finding real graduates is the way to go. Pushing papers in an HR office can be done by anybody, but that is really just a clerical slot, and certainly not a management slot.

    1. Education is indeed transformational, however the university-industrial-complex is not the only (or even the universally superior) way to become educated. I know many morons who have degrees from fine schools.

    2. Disagree. Lot of graduates with degrees in frat party etiquette. Give me a vet who completed night classes while raising a family. I know many. THAT shows serious character and determination.

    1. I used the advantage of financial aid for community college. At least it’s better than nothing.

  8. I’ve been saying this to my own employer. We have a group that works in customer service. They have tremendous knowledge of our policies and operations. However, most lack a college degree and so typically can’t transfer out to other departments even for relatively entry level positions. Meanwhile, those same positions will be offered to people who have random degrees in any number of things… photography, history, education. None of these things are particularly related to our work. We need to make opportunities to consider internal candidates based on their knowledge and skills.

  9. I have a college Degree, in Business Management…Was making $10 an hour…I took a 6 week course to become a CNA, to making $15 an hour…I went into private work and was making $1,180 a week till I retired in 2018…College Degree did nothing for me….Take short certification courses, Tech. or Trade courses…That is what pays off….Leave the colleges to Dr. and lawyers….

  10. Meanwhile in my country:
    “You have a college degree, but it’s not enough. Get a master’s degree”
    “You have a master’s degree but no experience. Sorry”
    “You have professional experience, but it’s outdated. We can’t hire you”
    “Your degree is irrelevant to the position, and you have no experience, but you’re the boss’s cousin/daughter/son/nephew/side chick/etc. HIRED immediately!”
    A person who decides to start a business: “Finally, financial independence!” (Gets killed by gangs for not giving almost his/her entire profits)

  11. The problem is colleges and universities are allowed to charge exhorbitant amounts for their courses. In 1980 (40 years ago) I paid as I went WHILE I had a full-time job, was divorced, and had 2 small kids. It was a struggle, but not an impossibility. It is EXTREMELY difficult for people to do that nowadays. We need FREE EDUCATION at all levels in order to make our population more educated rather than dropping the requirement for college degrees in the job market. It is more than an education that people receive from getting a degree.

  12. It’s like the single greatest way to lower the cost of college is good old-fashioned demand destruction. When employers stop contributing to the lies and stop insisting that for all those positions out there a 4-year bachelor’s degree is ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY, that’s THE game changer!

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