My lad is in his first year of a Level 3 Extended Diploma. He’s doing ok, really well in fact, good grades and we thought he was enjoying it.
I know it’s been a difficult year for many kids, but he’s been lucky, really busy working on a local farm. He absolutely loves it and is there every minute he can be.
In the last few weeks his head has gone down a bit when it comes to college. If we let him, he would not bother going again. We want him to last the course and get the qualification. He doesn’t want to do a degree, which is frustrating because we’re sure he could, but we don’t rule with a rod here, they’ve got to make their own way.
The fact he’s not doing a degree makes him
think the diploma is pointless, but we’re trying to get him to see further.
What options could he have to do something different next year?
We’re adamant he should do something with a qualification at the end. The trouble is he loves “the work”. It’s all he wants to do. He doesn’t want to tell people how to do the work, he just loves doing it himself. And when older he’s adamant he’s going to have his own business (or mine!!!) so won’t need to impress anybody with a piece of paper. All good stuff but we don’t want him to regret it later.
He could do with something to really grab him next year, give him a really interesting challenge.
I don’t think doing a degree did me much good to be honest, beyond having a piece of paper that shows me attaining some level of intelligence at some point in my life (maybe that’s a good thing come t think of it ). I’d struggle to remember much if any of what was taught, made good friends though, but there was too much fannying about.
Learnt far more in 4 months at Moreton Morrell with Tym Morgan (and that has stuck with me for coming on 20yrs now) than I did during 3yrs at Ag college.
It’s all down to the individual, I don’t cope well with theory, I understand far more by doing than talking, I can learn by writing loads of notes which is how I got through college, but don’t enjoy it, perhaps your lad feels similar about college, especially in its current form of screen time and minimal contact with others.
There’s a however a balance to strike between what he “wants” to do and what he “needs” to do to be able to achieve the “wants”. For example if he wants to take over the business from yourself, then he not only needs to grasp the practicalities, but also the unseen and oft overlooked parts - the boring office stuff that is the glue that holds it all together. That side of the job is harder to come to terms with if all you’ve known is tearing about being busy. If the college is going to give a grounding to that side of the job then I think your right to encourage him to stick in. Can make or lose more in the office than out on a machine.
There’s always the chance to come back to further education, it doesn’t all have to be done at once, and the door isn’t locked behind you when you leave. Maybe now isn’t the time for him, maybe nows the time to sign up for a seasons work in NZ or Oz, but a few years down the line when he’s a clear vision for the future could be a time to pursue a (part time) qualification. I left college with a Btech degree and 12 years later started a distance learning msc, which I really enjoyed as I was more focussed on what I wanted.
Also, if you know of anyone with a functioning time machine, I wouldn’t mind a shot to pop back to 97 and give myself my own fecking advice