It is that time of year when the students begin classes at the local universities. If they behave like what I remembered when I was studying, they’ll choose whatever is most profitable when they start working. Or whatever they excel in, hoping that their chosen degree helps when they start working. Concentrating their efforts on one thing, thinking it’s the best use of their university time.
I think we’re churning out enough specialists. I know of efforts to create well rounded individuals, who study a little bit of knowledge outside of their area of expertise. This is not enough. In this age of information, where knowledge is key, having information from diverse sources is critical. Understanding information from diverse sources is even better. Well rounded doesn’t cut it anymore. We need more polymaths.
Competing to be the best is commendable, and encouraged. The thing is, all the popular fields are taken. You want to be the best golfer? Go ahead. You want to have the largest software company? Go ahead. I just think there’s an alternative. I agree with Scott Adams (of Dilbert), who thinks becoming very good (top 25%) at two or more things is easier.
For example, a company needs a competent programmer. Hey you’re good enough. The company also needs a competent web designer. Well well well, turns out you’re good at web designing too. Match made in heaven.