[erlang-questions] Off-topic question about Universities

zxq9 zxq9@REDACTED
Wed Jul 5 03:57:40 CEST 2017

On 2017年07月05日 水曜日 13:20:00 Richard A. O'Keefe wrote:
> So I was wondering if anyone had any strong opinions about Universities
> and logos, and better yet, any evidence.

Anecdotal, but perhaps relevant...

The last three places I've contracted did not seem to take university into account at all with regard to hiring candidates. They did take publicly visible projects, programming blogs, stackoverflow answers, published works, ML involvement, and similar things into account before giving someone a trial project.

The trial project and interviews were the only thing they cared about. The candidate's public brand (within the technical community) mattered because it acted as a filter for deciding whether or not to spend the effort reviewing a trial project. The trial project mattered and acted as a further filter to determine whether to spend effort on an interview. The interview was more of a process of discovering red flags, an opportunity to show how disqualifyingly troublesome or weird you may be as a person. Hired on the basis of performance, disqualified on the basis of profound personality issues (obviously they give people quite a bit of leeway personally, as I was accepted).

LinkedIn, university degrees, certifications, etc. did not count for much, if anything.

Clearly, if the university is a place to get trained and the point of that training is to get a job but all the employers care about are the resulting skills and not where you got them, then a university logo can only matter at all in the minds of the students.

This assumes that we are approaching the question of logos from the perspective of students who are trying to get jobs, but from the administrators' perspective the educational function of the university may well be one of the least important aspects of the organization and therefore branding. Perhaps this matters more in the grant market, the admissions market, the other-forms-of-public-funding market, the paid-dinner donations/regency market, patent license market, recruitment of primary investigators, and so on. Maybe perceived coolness in branding is paramount there.

But in terms of the jobs market that graduates will face... well, its just about the last thing anyone is even aware of, much less concerned with.

For the record, the last three places I've contracted were mostly remote work[1], were focused on infrastructure, and needed pretty specific things designed, not merely implemented, were contract-term employment (not full-time forever and ever) -- and paid pretty well. That is a very tiny slice of the job market. I have no idea what 9-5 places would care about.

Also, I've never been to university (as a student, anyway) so I'm not sure how things would differ for me had I a degree.

> According to the Vice-Chancellor

I'm so glad that this is an actual title for someone somewhere. Images of the Galactic Senate in the Star Wars prequels immediately come to mind...

> You might also be puzzled that if "Continuity and consistency
> of logo use is the most valuable asset a brand has" introducing
> discontinuity and inconsistency by changing the logo could
> ever be desirable.  If so, you have overdosed on the Logic pills.
> I know I have! 

Indeed! The exercise itself seems to defeat the purpose of the exercise.


[1] I only performed any in-person work on one of the three jobs. Bringing the group physically together for two weeks was at my request, not a requirement -- fortunately it was a swell group of folks and they all agreed.

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