Written August 21, 2006     

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Note: Comments of readers are their own and do not reflect the feelings of Bob Lonsberry or lonsberry.com.

59 Responses to:

# 1. 8/21/06 12:21 AM
I hear people get a degree to fall back on. However I do think most investments are made by society not to fall back on but to invest so you can contribute to them in society.

I think women who raise children can take classes that help there too so there degree isn't wasted if they don't spend a lot of time in the workforce because they are raising there children.

# 2. 8/21/06 12:30 AM
thumbsup.gif Best wishes and I hope that the product of your education isn't just a head full of schitt.

# 3. 8/21/06 12:46 AM by Joe
My common sense has gotten me much further in this world than my bachelor's degree ever has. But the second I walked out of college with that degree, society deemed me a worthwhile and employable citizen. Somehow the fact that I could remember tidbits of information just long enough to be tested on them made me worthy of a large and comfortable income.

I can honestly say that I rarely use my college education in my current career. But it doesn't change the fact that I get paid a lot of money because of it. Makes no sense sometimes. The reality we live with is an odd thing.

Editor's Note: a degree also shows that you're not a quitter, that you follow a task through to completion.

# 4. 8/21/06 6:36 AM by h
More notes for college students:

I am in the "Masters degree or higher" category in the Lonsberry poll. I have spent a lot of time in school. I have spent almost as much time teaching school. And this is what I would pass on to a college student:

My degrees are in Art and in Art education. I got my first degree in 1987, and except for taking time off to raise babies, I have always, ALWAYS had work. Don't let any one tell you that a degree in the arts is not practical, especially if God Himself is the one who is telling you to pursue this goal. Doing what God put you on the planet to do is ALWAYS the most practical route, even if others don't see it that way.

Having said that, if you pursue a degree in an arts-related field, you would do very well to pick up at the very least some classes in, (or better yet, a minor or double major in,) education or business. Yes, do what you love, but learn to market yourself or teach within that field so you can still pay your bills.

And finally, remember this, Until God Himself tells you, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant",, you haven't really graduated, yet. Until you receive this commendation, you are still in learning mode. No matter how far you go in your chosen field, Stay humble, and serve.

Life....it's not about you.

Editor's Note: if god tells you to get an art degree, i'd get it in writing and ask to see his drivers license. if you do major in art, a natural second area of emphasis would be fast food.

# 5. 8/21/06 7:40 AM
It's obvious that you worship Mammon.

# 6. 8/21/06 7:41 AM
Sure bob, college is just for getting a fatter pay check in life.

I'm sure that's what Albert Einstein had on his mind during his undergrad years.

Editor's Note: he went to college in germany, and that was 100 years ago.

# 7. 8/21/06 7:55 AM
What the hell is your problem with art and the arts? There are close to 200 full time professions in the field of arts and many of them that are very high paying jobs. Designers of nearly everything manmade from fashion design to architecture to car design (okay so they have a fetish for jellybean shapes)come out of the fields of art. The chair you sit on was "designed" by a person from the arts. The microphone you spew your bile into was "designed" by a person with some art education. The art world is a vast, vast arena of human endeavor that visually effects us all in every daily activity. You seem to pidgeonhole art people as deluded long haired fools with paint brushes living out of garbage cans. We all cut off our ears in our maic love for painting yellow. Pull your head out. Maybe your unsuccessful career as a writer stems from your foolish notion that you only write for money, or worse, ideology. Try writing for the simple love of it. Oh God, that must have sounded like heresy to you.

Editor's Note: lots of lunatics write for "the simple love of it." if they were any good, they'd make their living from it. but they're not, so they pretend it's their "art."

# 8. 8/21/06 8:06 AM
My pastor went to 4 years of college before he spent a few years at ministry school. Too bad he ended up preaching at our poor church which pays him below the pverty level

# 9. 8/21/06 8:11 AM by Boomer - Scottsville ny

Gee , most of your listeners that took your poll and most likely listen to you have masters degrees. I did not realize that our educational system was in such sad shape.

# 10. 8/21/06 8:15 AM by DISSAPOINTED IN BOB

Editor's Note: but isn't religion supposed to change us?

# 11. 8/21/06 8:22 AM
The apostle Paul was called to make art, to write, and to preach. He was great at all of these things, yet the one he earned his wage in was the art. (Tentmaking, which was Paul's profession, is WEAVING.)

Want to be a more sucessful artist, writer, lawyer, doctor, teacher, etc., etc., etc., ???

Read more of Paul's writings, and less of everyone elses.

Editor's Note: paul was a lawyer, and if he did make tents, in those days that made him a construction worker.

# 12. 8/21/06 8:31 AM by Mike
Well, what an interesting article. Let's pinpoint the college student and drill down their throats the sinfulness of financial aid. Let's cripple the democratic and liberal mentality that exists on many of our colleges and universities. So, remember college students that if your on financial aid, you must get a good grade or your life will be stigmatized by the almighty one, Bob Lonsberry. Yes, he is the that is against all social welfare. If the federal government can waste taxpayers money on so many frivolous projects and causes, you can bet your bottom dollar that I will have no problem sleeping at night getting a few bucks from the "taxpayer". Mr. Lonsberry also feels that the Make A Wish Foundation, is a form of social welfare, in which the parent of a child should be responsible for the financial funding of such a request, not the TAXPAYER. So let's get rid of the Redcross, Uniceff, United Way, Catholic Charities, Meals on Wheels, etc. Get off your lazy ass America and support yourself and do it on your own. The pay of working Americans is stagnant, and inflation is present. Corporate profits are healthy and jobs are on the decline. So for those of you who are becoming college students, please rub this nonsense right of your shoulders. There are more important things to think about. Good Luck and have a wonderful experience. And don't forget, SUNY is subsidized by the taxpayer.

# 13. 8/21/06 8:39 AM
If Paul was having a bad day and didn't weave tightly enough, then he could be known as a WEB designer...

# 14. 8/21/06 8:42 AM by Davd H - Rochester, NY
Bob: College is almost always a gamble-for the majority of people who attend college. But the expense of attending college is exaggerated, and the college of ones choice is personal,and a choice of a major guarantees almost nothing. Ronald Reagan attended Eureka College, as a very needy undergraduate student, and studied Economics. After graduation, he called baseball games over the radio, and then in later years did a few other interesting things.It is no secret that his alma mater,and his studies, were the source of much snickering and downright cruelty in later years, from those "elites" who attended the ivy league schools.I believe that Tom Golisano is a graduate of-Monroe Community College.Enough said. It makes some sense to choose carefully when deciding what to study,but many so called practical degrees are, in a short period of time- as useless as those art degrees you sneer at.Remember the punch cards and "data processing" of forty years ago? And I remember also when teachers couldnt beg, borrow, or steal a job. Nursing? It never paid to be a nurse, thats for sure. Is there any need at all, outside the military that is, for engineers? And how many degrees in law are rendered "useless" because the graduate couldnt pass the bar exam? Our founding fathers were, almost all of them, self educated men. But they also held formal education(including the study of Greek, and Roman, of all things!) in high regard,and were themselves held in contempt by their worthy, well educated English betters. Dave

# 15. 8/21/06 8:51 AM - Fairport, NY
Bob: I believe that statistics would show that the majority of millionaires in this world have little if any college education. Says a lot about that coveted degree? Some folks find actually working for a living a better path to success. More folks ought to give a try.

# 16. 8/21/06 8:52 AM by Deb - Mendon, NY
thumbsup.gif Wow. I just read the comments submitted so far and had to check to see if the respondents were referring to today's column. I had the opposite reaction: kids need to hear these things. Your message is not just about adequately preparing oneself for the work world, but also recognizing the financial investment/burden that parents and students are taking on, and the importance of not squandering the opportunity by becoming distracted by the social scene. This column resonated with me and I've printed copies for my college freshman and junior.

# 17. 8/21/06 8:55 AM
thumbsup.gif Bob - I wondered if anyone would address this issue; "Daughters and College" and I've not seen a single comment. As a father I wonder if I don't improve my daughter's lot in life by sending her to the best college possible in hopes that she finds a husband and father of my grandchildren and he is well enough off for her to stay home and raise my heirs. It was funny while going to school and hearing jokes about young ladies seeking an "MRS" degree. Looking back I'm not sure there is anything wrong with it. Be educated so that you can be a pillar next to your husband raising his kids (and your parents heirs).

Granted I feel my daughter needs to have a useful degree, yes as a backup, but I'm not sure it would ever bother me if she never put it to its full use. Is this wrong?

Editor's Note: not the way i look at it.

# 18. 8/21/06 9:09 AM
I wish they would control these costs a bit more. What angers me is that "out of state" students pay more than "in staters" . What with room and board added to an "out of stater" that should cover that and the tuition should be same regardless.

Editor's Note: the families of in-state students have been paying state taxes to support the institution, and continue to do so. out-of-state students' parents don't.

# 19. 8/21/06 9:17 AM by A Patriot - Lockport, NY
Study hard in college, son. Get that Bach., or even Masters degree. Get a good-paying job, buy a real nice house with a full basement, so your mom and I will have a place to live in our senior years.

# 20. 8/21/06 9:25 AM by Steve
Why is it when you talk about college the liberal/communist seems to come out of the wood work?

If we got the government stuff out of loans and school the price would come down but the socialists who believe in handouts will never understand, they want America to be subservient fools, see most comments above.

I went to college 3times and possibly four if I can get some money together.

I don't get the Art arguments above seems childish.

I wanted to be a music major (took some courses when I got my Liberal Arts degree) and went very far in music(worked for Sony records once), but I could not live off the money.

The funny thing is everyone said go for engineering and leave music so I did plus I wanted too have a more stable job, whats funny is since America is killing itself outsourcing I'm not sure going into engineering was worth it anymore...

# 21. 8/21/06 9:26 AM by Julie
I think this column should be mandatory reading for every freshmen entering college. Heck, maybe even give it to 'em in High School before "senior-itis" sets it. Seriously, I put myself through college. My family contributed nothing, and were less than supportive. I worked up to three jobs at one point to put myself through, and do feel I am the better for it.

Unfortunately, I chose to major in "social studies" for the first few years before turning my life around. These kids need to know that 2 years of "bad" cannot be turned around by 2 years of "good". (Think grad school options.) So you might have to work or study when your friends want to hang out. As you put it, they HAVE to look into the future, and look at college and how they handle it as the stepping stone to better self-support.

Also, as far as women go, I have felt very blessed to stay home and raise my family for now. But I am also glad I did get a college education. I have used much of what I learned for church, and other volunteer activities. Hopefully, those skills plus my degree will help me get a job as my kid gets older, when I work to put money away for her future.

Also, I think parents should make their children save for part of their college education, even if it's just to pay for books. I think those of us who put ourselves through college ended up appreciated the learning process better.

Good one, Bob.

# 22. 8/21/06 9:30 AM
Hey #8, your pastor obviosly knew :

Mt 6:24 No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.

**************** Bob has apparently made his choice as to which master he serves.

Editor's Note: "mammon" is more than money, get a better translation.

# 23. 8/21/06 9:41 AM by Jon - Geneseo NY
Bob, I agree with your comments about colleges preparing you for a jobholder you look at what most SUNY colleges have for a curriculum, unless you want to teach most won't equip you for a job at Macdonald. They will push for a liberal arts degree to keep their otherwise unemployable facility on the payroll. How many jobs in industry need a philosophy professor,or a Ph.D. in history? What are the advisors doing to make sure that the students get an education that will be beneficial in finding a job? How many physical education majors jobs are there? They won't tell the students that there is zero chance of finding a job in that field because it would hurt enrollment. Lets fix the colleges and the students will be better served.

# 24. 8/21/06 9:53 AM
Should i get a better translation for this also?

1 Timothy 6:10:

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

Editor's Note: what about the part where god told adam he would eat his bread by the sweat of his brow?

# 25. 8/21/06 9:57 AM
thumbsup.gif I'm a skolar.

# 26. 8/21/06 10:06 AM by Tim - Rochester, NY
thumbsup.gif As a former college dropout I agree with everything you said. Am I glad I dropped out-- without a doubt. I needed to understand the real world a little better before I could get what I needed from college. Tuition money was better spent as 401(k) and IRA contributions anyway and when I graduate I will not have spent anything towards tuition (just a few UR parking tix), I earned it by working hard for my employer. Being accountable for performance works in the business world and can work in education as well. Good luck but those who think college grads are smarter than the population as a whole...I'm not so sure. I am sure they are better at appearing smarter.

# 27. 8/21/06 10:22 AM
And i always subscribed to the philosophy of "Give us this day our daily bread"-not "Please exchange our sweat equity for our daily bread"

One day you will learn that man can not live on bread alone. You should really look to the lillies of the field to see if god will provide for our needs or not.

If you try to play the "quid pro quo" game with god you will loose every time.

# 28. 8/21/06 10:36 AM by Tim - Rochester, NY
thumbsup.gif The apostle Paul, if I'm not mistaken was a tax collector who went by the name Saul before repenting before God. I am human but honest enough to admit I could never forgive such a person.

# 29. 8/21/06 10:52 AM
thumbsup.gif Good article.

Watching the President right NOW on tv.

He is STRONG! He is RIGHT.

He said we are in challenging times, not joyous times.

He said if we were to leave before the job is done in Iraq, we would lose our souls as a nation!

I have not heard him being so solid and confident!


When our people are sent to Iraq to help and do everything they are doing, comparing to sending police to the Rochester streets to defend the Rochester homeowners, and people there, against the wimp and wusses of hoodlums and drugdealers, etc..pull out of Iraq?

It would be like not having any police in Rochester.., kind of.

# 30. 8/21/06 10:54 AM by steve
To the idiots that keep quoting Jesus and the bible, stop, its boring and old.

I love you libs that find religion when they want to talk about the evils of capitalism and hard work. It reminds me of that dumb saying "what would Jesus do?"

# 31. 8/21/06 11:00 AM by K Murray - Charlotte, NC
thumbsup.gif Your thoughts are excellent and I agree with you.

College has changed from my parents day and has continued changing through my day. It is a very expensive undertaking and can't be though of like it was back in my parents day. Most people can't simply afford to go hit or miss for a few years until they figure out what to do. If you are going to go these days you really have got to be much more focused and right to the point. No changing in your Junior year, on a whim, from one major to something totally different, unless you want a unbelievable debt to pay back when and if you finally finish.

No, college has changed and I wish this next generation all the best because it is going to be that much harder.

# 32. 8/21/06 11:16 AM by Elizabeth - Brigham City, UT
thumbsup.gif Your comments on the radio, no matter the issue,are so appreciated. I can't wait to turn on KNRS every morning to hear what you have to say.

Go ahead and tell your son to check-out the girls in Tremonton. I'm from Tremonton (too old for your son), camellia Fronk is from Tremonton, Pres. Boyd K. Packer is from Box Elder County. Yes, some of God's finest are from up here.

I would like to invite you and your family to come to the Box Elder County Fair this week end (Aug. 24th, 25th & 26th), in Tremonton. The best and the worst will be there, but it's always a fun time. Come check it out. Maybe you would like to take in the Rodeo while you're at it.

Be kind to Tremontonites.

Love you lots,

Editor's Note: i'll be at the rodeo friday night. i can't wait.

# 33. 8/21/06 11:18 AM by hunter - e. bethany, ny
thumbsup.gif When did the disconnect between what a college-bound youngster and their pay obtainable from a summer job become so disconnected?

Were college professors that underpaid in the 1960's and 70's? Did it cost more to build the buildings? Were we receiving less education for our lower tuition costs.

Or did the federal and state governments decide we must "freebie" a large number of students, so the rest must pay more?

# 34. 8/21/06 11:27 AM by Dale Sorensen - Wellsville, UT.
thumbsup.gif Good column, but I liked the talk you gave this morning on the decline of America. I am concerned about our country and the direction it is going. I hope it isn't too late. I look at the guys I work with and as long as they can drink beer and watch sports on TV or go water skiing, ride their motorcycles, etc. they don't care about anything else. I like to be involved in sports and hobbies but I am also very political minded. What you said about Mr. Hatch was right on and I have thought Utah should have better representive's than we do. I have never understood this how politicans so out of touch with the main stream of Utah residents could get elected. Then you start talking about third party and running them down. Granted, none have made much of a mark yet but as the Republicans and Democrats come closer together maybe it is time for a party that is different. I don't feel I waste my vote, Pres. Benson said we should vote for what is right regardless of its popularity. Maybe if more mormans would follow his advice maybe it would make a difference. Also you know in Utah the Republicans will always win and one decenting vote won't make much of a difference. Another point, if the Republicans got put out of power because of enough third party votes, splitting the conservative vote, maybe they would wake up and realize people are unhappy with their performance. I enjoy listening to your show and I like to here an LDS view on the radio. I attended Stake conference this Sunday and the General Authority compaired Heliman's writings (chapter 12 on and the first of III Nephi) to our times and chastised the members for saying all is well in Zion as they grow rich, and not listening to the Prophet.

# 35. 8/21/06 11:43 AM by Jen G - Maysville, WV
thumbsup.gif I sent this column to my son who is in college. Thanks for saying so well the thoughts I have not been able to express very coherently!

# 36. 8/21/06 11:53 AM by Dr. Ackerson - Heber, Utah
thumbsup.gif Every year I am amazed when I ask young college students what there major is. Common responses from the young ones are Marine Biology or Bio-Chemistry. It amazes me how few students have ever talked to someone working in there chosen academic study of a profession. Lots of time an money spent to buy something they have never seen or tried on. Many invest more effort research into a new wardrobe (they try it on before they buy it) than a future job. Funny isn't it!!!

# 37. 8/21/06 11:59 AM by Rich Stewart - Penn Yan, NY
thumbsup.gif Not a bad column, I'll forward it to my son at Fredonia State.

# 38. 8/21/06 12:05 PM by Steve - Rome, NY
thumbsup.gif In August 1981, after 4 years of service in Navy I decided to move on and by 1/82 I began attending SUNY Geneseo as a commuter student from Dansville. When I started I wasn't quite sure what my major would be but I always had an interest in science so I began to pursue more Biology and Chemistry classes and I decided on a Biology major with a Chemistry minor(and a computer science minor though all those computer classes&info from that time is pretty much irrelavant now). I can't say enough for SUNY Geneseo--I really think that is a great college and a real asset to the area and looking back I know that I really worked hard there to get through--a whole lot of weekends in the library and in the study room in the student union bldg. but I do have a lot of good memories from there and in 5/85 it was quite a day when I walked across that stage to get that degree. A little over a year later I started the PA program at SUNY Stony Brook (2 more years of weekends in the library), but now I can say that the time, money(with considerable help from the GI Bill) and effort I spent then is paying off big time now. So I would urge young people to carefully consider what you are interested in and consider what will support you best throughout your life and then do everything you can to "go for it" in college. It may seem like a long time now to get through those years but they will pass quicker than you know and you won't regret the time you spent--the time to do it is when you are young (though you can certainly go to college later on in life as well).

# 39. 8/21/06 12:09 PM by Wade - Sandy, UT
thumbsup.gif Bob is right! Did everybody miss the part where he said becoming well-rounded and all that jazz is important? But he also said that it's secondary to the main purpose of college, which is learning a marketable skill.

My number one responsibility is to provide for my family. If I fail in that, then anything else I might do is for naught.

Besides, college is the last place I would send my kids to become well-rounded, good citizens. Practically everything college teaches you in that regard is 100% wrong.

He also did not say that it was bad to finance school through loans or grants, he just said to remember where that money comes from and the consequences of borrowing.

He didn't even actually say it was bad to major in the arts. He said to make sure you have a job in mind when you choose a major.

Uh, engineers are not needed outside the military? Who designs and builds your roads, buildings, cars, computers, eyeglasses, shoes, furniture, TVs, radios, radio & TV stations, satellites, cable TV infrastructure, telephones/cellphones & telephone systems, water, gas and electricity distribution, etc., etc., etc. Engineering is arguably the most important school on any college campus, though it often gets the short end of the stick when it comes to financing and facilities.

# 40. 8/21/06 12:28 PM
What words of advice to those of us paying our way as we go?

Editor's Note: tough it out, don't quit. you're doing it right.

# 41. 8/21/06 12:32 PM by J Bailey - Macedon NY
I dunno, some of the stupidest people I know have masters degrees. Just goes to show that not all book learning is really worth the time and effort. Some of the decisions made by these "educated idiots" are just astonishing. Take a look at all those 'educated idiots' in our own government...

Don't get me wrong, it is important to get a decent education, but by all means, don't let it go to your head.

# 42. 8/21/06 1:14 PM by Carrie

You obviously never went to college or you did and feel so guilty over the good time you had there that you are lecturing yourself. I expect students to have a great time and learn too. It is a parents choice to cover the cost of their children's education. If they have to lay on a guilt trip then maybe they can't afford it to begin with and are doing it to show off to their friends, and or to have something to complain about!!! SO my advice to this years college student-go have a great time AND go to class!!

# 43. 8/21/06 2:57 PM
Shame on the parents of the kids with college degrees working at the mall.

If your kid is not going to choose a worth-while major and have a job in mind then as parents you must not be supportive.

I could live up to this but I bet my wife can't.

# 44. 8/21/06 3:01 PM by Rich - Salt Lake City
thumbsup.gif EVERY college student should be required to memorize this, Bob. I interview college grads for positions and I am stunned at how many have student loans of $100,000 and more and they seem totally unaware of what a burden they have placed on themselves and their family's future.

Keep telling it like it REALLY is, Bob: tough!

# 45. 8/21/06 3:11 PM
Great Note! Sometimes the truth hurts. Learn it now, be happier later.

P.S. Artsy people sure can be testy.

# 46. 8/21/06 3:32 PM by Mark
I have reason to suspect that you folks - and too many others like you - who have commented on this article claiming to have put or to be putting themselves through college, need to practice a little more gratitude. How dare you. That's some thanks to the extreme largesse of sponsoring organizations, corporations, taxpayers, rich alumni and various other donors both public and private, which almost certainly paid or are paying the majority of your educational costs - even if you are not the recipient of any extra scholarship or grant.

And working three jobs in order to do so? What does that mean, 8 hours per day each? What, you're working 24 hours, in a 24-hour day? How are you going to school or studying, when there are only 24 hours in a day? What does "three jobs" mean anyway?

God bless you for contributing what you can, and for your diligence. But let's just be honest and tell the story accurately and completely, that's all I'm asking. And especially, think twice before looking down on your fellows who may have received additional help from family, scholarships, or otherwise. Because you too are in the same boat, whether you appreciate it or not.

# 47. 8/21/06 5:02 PM by Dorette - Williamson NY
thumbsup.gif Hi Bob... as mom to a freshman taken to SUNY Oneonta yesterday, I can totally relate to today's column. My last word to him was "Balance" - have fun but remember why you are at college. I am so proud because he overcame odds of being a special needs student to go on to college. Thank you for expressing what has been in my heart and mind.

# 48. 8/21/06 5:24 PM by REMAY - Kaysville
If all you want from college is a skill, don't waste you time. Go to a trade school instead. Much shorter.

If you really want a well rounded education, where you will be exposed to a variety of philosophies, and the great ideas of world thinkers, go to university.

(The go to trade school so you can make a living.)

# 49. 8/21/06 8:22 PM by Steven Anderson - The Place, Utah
I knew a fellow who's parents paid his way through college.

He spent it being a party animal-drunk all the time. A real John Belushi wannabe.

Finally,into his 3rd year as the parents realised that he would never graduate they quit supporting him.

He continued to hang out with the old gang till they moved on themselves.

He continued to hang out with their younger siblings till they moved on. He was still considered a cool partier,a sort of older brother figure.

By his late 20's he suddenly was on the out's-too old for the even newer croud. After desperatly trying to still be one of the guys they had enough & picked on him constantly.

The last time I saw him he was still a drunk & living at home.

What a waste!

# 50. 8/22/06 12:25 AM by Sue M - Fairport, N.Y.
thumbsup.gif Bob, this is the most fantastic column you have ever written. I've seen so many of my neighbor's kid's come home with beards, tattoos and heavy drinking problems and nothing to show for the time they were away at college, to their parent's horror. Well said...great article.

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