Interview with DIY U: Edupunks, Edupreneurs, and the Coming Transformation of Higher Education author Anya Kamenetz:
In the future, I don’t think it’ll go back to the old model, where colleges have this brand name that everyone respects. We still use college as shorthand for prestige, but eventually that should be just one marker among many. You’re not going to be applying for jobs on the strength of your WGU diploma — you’re going to have to rely more on your assessments in the field. But grads of WGU have found they can satisfy employers by showing them what they’ve done, more than where they’ve studied. […]
I was very good at traditional school and college, where I graduated with honors. All the time while absorbing literature and Russian, I was also learning the meta-skills of how to please my teachers and how to stay away from any classes that might be too challenging or outside my comfort zone. I made an attempt to design my own major around literature and psycholinguistics, but Yale threw up a lot of barriers to that.
My most relevant learning experiences took place outside the classroom, editing my student magazine and working as an intern at several different publications. Out in the real world I was challenged to the max, pulling far more all-nighters than I did for my papers. I was always a bookworm, so I had to develop new ways of dealing with people, whether sources, fellow writers or editors, and gathering information from being on the scene. I actually cut back on my class load my senior year so I could commute to New York three days a week to intern at the Village Voice, which is pretty rare among Ivy Leaguers. But it turned out great: I found great mentors there, and I was writing a column for the Voice just a couple years later.