There is a great thread running at PAL with the same title. I started writing a response, then thought it would be better to move my rant over here.
Jeremy and I have had this conversation many times before. We differ slightly in opinion, but I do agree with his points. Here are my thoughts.
I got a degree in Business Management and am extremely happy and proud of it. I would not change it at all. I was an entrepreneur all throughout college, so I guess I differ as I had a great experience doing both at the same time.
I grew up a lot in college in terms of my overall understanding of business and what it takes. I learned many things that I use daily. I learned a bunch of useless shit as well though.
I differ a bit being on the operations side, but in my mind, affiliating is one of the few sectors under the entrepreneurial umbrella that a college degree is basically useless. But going with a more 10,000 view of what it is to be an entrepreneur, I think that my degree is extremely helpful.
The goal is to create your own business right? Well having the right ideas for a new product for example, does not mean success. There is a lot more that you have to know behind the scenes in order to run or even create a successful business.
I think if done right, a college education replaces the void of experience. If you give your daughter $100,000 to start a business, the odds of her pissing a way the money on a failed venture is just as high as her pissing it away on a useless college education, probably even higher. There are so many useless Majors, that it is far to easy to do this now a days.
There is a lot of money in what we do, but what worries me is the uncertainty of the future of affiliating. It has only been around for 10 years, so who can predict what it will be like in another 10. IMO the key is to keep this in mind and have an exit strategy. If you found out tomorrow that everything came crashing down in our industry, or even if there is a major shakeup in affiliating in general, what would you do? How would you manage?
My goal is to always know what the next step could be if shit truly hit the fan.
Ill try to dig deeper into this another time. There are a lot of points in here that I feel stronhly about that I would be happy to discuss further.