Valdosta Daily Times

What We Think

May 7, 2014

Life by degrees

VALDOSTA — Hundreds of students will graduate from Valdosta State University this weekend and Wiregrass Georgia Technical College later in the month.

That’s hundreds of more people entering the job market. Hundreds of new faces looking for work in the face of a stark economy.

In the past, a secondary education assured employment.

It ensured the possibility of promotion and the opportunity of a good career.

A degree can no longer make these guarantees.

The degree is fine, but remember, hundreds of other students possess a new degree this month, too.

Yet, it does offer the hope for a better job. It creates an invitation to a possible career. It serves as an edge over the competition.

A degree remains a solid weapon in the job-seeker’s arsenal, but it is no longer a heat-seeking missile to employment. It must be accompanied by other tools and skills. It must be forged by drive and desire.

Work ethic has become the mantra of most employers in this new age. Arrive on time. Work diligently. Dress for success. Be efficient. Be an innovator. Listen. Offer ideas. Keep learning. Don’t just work for the pay you receive, work for the pay you would like to make. Make your work your song then sing it well.

Still, do not misunderstand, we by no means disparage a degree. We by no means underestimate the worth of such an achievement.

By earning a degree, graduates reveal they can complete a task. They have proven they can succeed at completing the projects they love as well as the ones they abhor.

Earning a degree deserves sincere congratulations for all of your hard work, but, graduates, please remember, the work now begins anew.

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