All our new qualifications and degrees are totally legitimate — and none are from Denver State. In fact, they look so good they would fool all those people who also believe my genuine Rolax (sic) watch is Swiss. The fact is, my brother purchased the watch in Hong Kong for $19.95 and the only thing Swiss about it is the… Oh wait; there is absolutely nothing Swiss about it at all. Not that I am a compulsive collector of fakes.
As you may have started to guess, I am not being totally honest about my degrees and awards (or even fakes). However, as I only plan to use these in my CV and other public documents I don’t think anyone will mind too much.
Let’s be honest here — a CV is expected to contain certain degrees of exaggeration and embellishment. After all CV is Latin for Creativus Villanie, or something like that. I bought a certificate in Latin only so I might not be completely accurate here.
So where is this cheap attempt at humour taking us? Well, after the Maori TV news item, I decided I would actually do a little digging online to see what degrees I could be eligible for. Surprisingly, there is a wide selection of online universities out there. Even more surprising, especially for my illustrious editor, is that I actually researched anything rather than just make it up from the top of my head.
In reality I was unable to actually finish a degree, partly because enrolments required me to supply personal details I don’t put on the net, but mostly because my credit card is already maxed out.
Of the universities I tried, a few do seem to try to make an attempt at being genuine. However, even some of the so-called legit ones are immensely suspicious. For example UMUC (University of Maryland University College) advertises that an entire semester of study is approximately 18 hours. Your first bachelor-level degree will take about 120 hours. However up to 75% of this can be discounted with previous qualifications or possibly experience.
Now, 120 hours is probably the amount of time your average Massey student spends sober during a BA degree, but at least they are studying while they are drunk. Likewise they have to waste three years wandering around barefoot pretending to have liberal ideas about women in the workplace, child labour laws and of course the value of a separate Maori TV channel. At UMUC you only have to be liberal for the time it takes to fill in the online enrolment.
Meanwhile, over at Canyon College (located in Idaho but for some reason not available to Idaho residents) I can also use previous work experience for up to 75% credit and previous training for up to 50%. In fact, with decent work experience and the payment of $US900 I could have my Information Management degree in practically no time at all.
Even better, not only do I “earn” my certificate for the wall, I can also purchase sweat shirts, track suits, cups, bags and other stuff all labelled with the name of my Alma Mater (additional costs apply).
By coincidence, I have also received an email offering instant qualifications based 100% on work experience. Unfortunately it doesn’t list which university and when you reply to the message (at their official hotmail account!?) it bounces back quicker than Pakekura Horomia on a bungy cable.
Of course, while Derek Fox might think this column is just more Maori bashing, nothing could be further from the truth. I prefer to think of it as idiot bashing. Unfortunately in this case he, his board, his employment consultants and most others associated with the decision making tend to fall into both categories.
However, talking of idiots and changing the subject completely, it is great to see Bill English offering to don the gloves in a fight for life. A very worthy cause, even if he reeks of cheap publicity. While this has absolutely nothing to do with IT or IM, I am really pleased that he will have an excuse for why he talks and acts punch drunk during interviews (well, actually all the time).
As an aside, I once actually swapped some email messages with Bill’s number one fan, Michelle Boag. I found a link on her site and never thought I would get a reply. It impressed me that she took the time to reply to her messages (this was the height of her campaign for chairmanship, so she was a bit busy). I guess this will never happen again now.
Until next time, happy studying.
Nygllhuw Morris, pictured with his daughter Jadzia, can be found at firstname.lastname@example.org.