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But I Don’t Have a College Degree

Written By: Lauren Howard

"But I don’t have a college degree."

She said it to me when we were talking about a role that I was thinking about opening.

Okay. So?

She stammered.

"Well, I mean, most places want that before they will look at my resume. I work really hard, but I didn’t finish college."

I mean, good for most places, but I couldn’t care less.

She didn’t believe me.

"Are you sure? I mean, I did most of my coursework for nursing but I just couldn't finish it because of the kids and it's just been so long now."

I asked her if she cared that she didn't have a degree.

“I mean, only because I think everyone else cares. I don't really want to go back to school anymore.”

Sounds to me like you're good without a degree, then.

Thinking about the people who work for me now in non-clinical roles, I know that one of them has a college degree. It’s not that the others don’t, but I never asked. They might. They might not.


It just really doesn’t come up unless I’m hiring someone who needs a specific credential to do the job.

If you're a doctor, I care if you have a medical degree.

If you're a nurse, I need you to have graduated from nursing school or done the coursework to get whatever credential you have.

I'm sure there are lots of others that matter, but those are the ones that I run into the most.

I know lots of college-educated people who are amazing at jobs that have nothing to do with their degrees.

I know lots of people with GEDs who kick butt at everything they have ever done.

I also know a lot of physicians who are excellent physicians and, beyond that, can barely tie their shoes.

I also know many, many people who are in massive, crushing debt from Bachelor's or graduate degrees that they were promised would open every door and who have had a very different experience than that.

I care if you can do the job.

The rest is extra.

And by the way, she was not only an excellent hire, but I will fight anyone for her for the rest of forever.


Founder & CEO at elletwo

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