Applied Learning Is Real-(World)
I’ve been meaning to write a blog on this topic for a long time. I guess today is the day. The topic that has caught my attention and elicited a great deal of thought is this: applied learning.
To preface, I’d like you to know that my educational history is very similar to the route many people take. I’m a proud alumnus of St. John’s Elementary School, I excelled at Columbus Middle School, I worked hard to graduate from Marshfield High School, and I worked even harder to graduate from Marquette University. I’ve been learning things in a educational environment for the last 17 years of my life so, clearly, the work I was putting in was to earn the highest GPA I could.
Most of the people I now see in interviews will confidently share their GPA (if it is noteworthy). A grade point average is something most people hang their hat on, and rightly so, it is the only thing they have been measured by for the last 17 years! But the reason for my deep thoughts on this topic come back to one question: why does it matter?
In most fields, the importance of your education does not come back to how well you did on exams or the number of reading assignments you actually completed, but to how well you can apply what you’ve learned to every other aspect of your life.
Marketing students learn about the product life cycle and customer relations management. Great. How do they apply to the intro-level sales position you are in now? If you don’t know, the lessons may be lost. If the lessons are lost, why did you spend the time learning them?
I am by no means discounting a great education. I believe an education is incredibly important and will help you achieve your goals in every way. I am simply telling you to get the most out of your education by drawing parallels between what you’re learning in school and what you’re experiencing elsewhere. By doing this, you’ll engrain the lessons you’ve learned in school into your mind, and you’ll be able to apply these lessons to real-life situations.
If you’re like me, and you’ve dedicated (or are currently dedicating) a great deal of time to obtaining a high GPA, make sure you’re making your time count. Then, when you’re in an interview, you can tell your interviewer not only your GPA, but the ways your GPA will have a positive effect on the company…It will get you the job and will lead you to success in your position.
Let me know what you think about applied learning in the comments below!