Back when I was a senior in high school I attended a business leader summit. 8 business leaders from some of the well know companies in the area met with seniors from the area high schools for a panel discussion on the topic of college and careers. 3 hours of discussion on topics I don’t even remember (this was 30+ years ago). What I do remember and consider to be the most valuable piece of information I got was when the moderator turned to the panel and asked this question: “How many of you work in the field you studied for in college?” I was shocked when only 2 hands from the panel went up. 2 out of 8! My immediate thought was something along the lines of oh great! Why am I going to spend a lot of money I don’t have to get an education I’m not likely to use? I did go ahead with my plans, graduated and I no longer work in the field I studied for. I became what I feared and it was the best career move I could have made AND I still use what I learned.
When I was in school we weren’t allowed to use calculators. It wasn’t until we took physics and calculus that we were allowed to use them – and that was in high school. Calculators are a prevalent today. Every mobile device has one and grade school kids use them whether they’re supposed to or not. There is an ongoing debate over whether or not calculators should be allowed in the classroom but change seems inevitable as more educators are finding ways to use them constructively as part of the learning process.