Shortly after completing her Bachelor’s degree at Mount Holyoke College, Elizabeth King did what many self-respecting academic-types do: she considered graduate school. It was a bit of a knee-jerk reaction, and given her eclectic college degree (dubbed Cultural Economics, it’s an amalgamation of Microeconomics, Art History, Math, and Studio Art), choosing a graduate field of study proved difficult. Math? Theater? Studio Art? Journalism?
Worse, finding a satisfying excuse to hide out in school for a few more years while accruing enormous amounts of debt was exceedingly difficult.
So she didn’t apply.
Not long into her uncomfortable foray in corporate America, Elizabeth stumbled upon David Mamet’s “True and False” with its frightening caveat to “…speak up, stand up, [and] stay out of school.” She’s been wrestling with those last four words ever since.
StayOutOfSchool.com investigates why one of the greatest, albeit hard-headed, creative thinkers of our time advises young, creative college graduates to stay out of graduate school. The exploration will reach further, though, into how institutional education at all levels, creativity, individuality, and the fruit of “the school of life” have long been at war. Ultimately, Stay Out Of School aims to critically assess those issues most relevant to the 21st century thinker and innovator and recommend ways to bring those issues to light inside the classroom and ingratiate them into American culture.
Because you can’t just stay out of school. ____________________________
Elizabeth King is the author of “OUTSMARTING the SAT” (Ten Speed, 2008) and President of Elizabeth King Coaching, Inc., a test preparation company based in New York City. You can find out more information about her work and other projects at ElizabethOnline.com. Elizabeth graduated from Mount Holyoke College with a degree in Cultural Economics and is the recipient of a Mount Holyoke College Class of 1905 Alumnae Fellowship and a Mount Holyoke College Bardwell Fellowship.