Photo: Mike Baird via Flickr
Given the status of the economy, the lack of steady, high paying jobs, and a stubborn free market that refuses to realise that there is such a thing as “cost of living,” it shouldn’t be a surprise that so many high school graduates don’t want to consider the high cost of college as a viable option for their careers.It’s even more mind-boggling when you look at some of the truly strange masters programs that graduate students take once they actually finish four years of college.
1. Convention Management
Large gatherings of plumbing supply salesmen, seafood restaurateurs and very sweaty comic book fans in form fitting spandex don’t just come together with social networking and magic. They require the delicate touch of an organiser who can bring together a group of people and help educate and entertain them on the facets of their careers they never knew (in the case of the comic book fans, that’s usually showering).
The Kyung Hee University in Seoul, Korea can help bring your dream of bringing like minded people together to improve their business, meet fellow colleagues and create drunken hookups for out of town business owners whose marriages lost their spark long ago. Aspiring convention managers can learn important facets of convention organising such as planning and managing conventions, increasing business between different world nations (Lesson No. 49: don’t put the Iran table next to the yellow cake uranium sample booth) and “promoting cooperation” (in case you didn’t learn how to cooperate when you were six like we all did from “Sesame Street’).
Nobody likes the tax man. They are basically loan sharks who aren’t allowed to fear and intimidation to get what they are owed, but could have earned doctorates in being annoying douchebags if they hadn’t quit halfway through to earn their masters degreein this field.
This degree program from Golden Gate University offers “one of the finest tax programs in the nation,” which is a lot like being the best proctologist in the country except you get more laughs at parties. The course will teach aspiring dream stoppers to “identify tax issues” (should you audit the old woman with chronic bronchitis or the orphanage that tried to deduct porridge that the national porridge conglomerate never sent them?), recognise and identify tax forms(the Form 5498 will make you laugh so hard, you’ll crap your pants) and “have a basic knowledge of professional ethical responsibilities” (that’s really more of an elective class).
3. Tae Kwon Do
Every rogue trucker and angry guy in camo who hangs out at the mall waiting for their “girlfriend” claims they have a degree in kicking arse and a masters in taking names. The truth is they could barely earn an associates in Pig Latin from the community college they were kicked out of for making terrorist threats against their academic advisor for making them take a Spanish class.
Believe it or not, it is possible to get an actual degree in kicking arse by returning to Kyung Hee University, the same college where you would have gotten your convention management degree if you hadn’t put the Dingo Preservation Society next to the baby simulator booth, to get a degree in Tae Kwon Do. This specialised physical education course will teach not just the techniques but also the philosophies and cultural significance of the marital art by making students paint houses, wax outdoor decks and catch flies with chopsticks. And yes, it will be on the final exam.
4. Popular Music
If it weren’t for towns like Liverpool, England, The Beatles wouldn’t have done everything in their power to escape that craphole of a town and make it big as musicians, which makes one wonder why Branson, Missouri has so many musicians who have yet to escape. Either people are voluntarily visiting the town to be entertained or they are being controlled against their will “1984” style.
So it’s only fitting that the University of Liverpool would try to retain some of its star-struck residents by actually offering an equally interesting degree to keep them from leaving. Their pop music masters degree program actually takes money from young adults so they can voluntarily learn how to listen to Britney Spears and Jessica Simpson tunes with a straight face. They will also learn the textual analysis for popular songs, the cultural impact of the recording industry and how popular music affects our daily lives (for example, it makes us appreciate the sweet release of death more).
5. Digital Games
Remember when Droz from the college comedy classic “PCU” said that “You can major in Gameboy if you know how bulls—“? Who knew that such a film could actually be educational and possibly the basis for a masters degree program somewhere in this twisted world?
Liverpool John Moores University actually offers a degree in the study and creation of the pixelated arts by teaching students (those who bother to show up because they got stoned, which also may or may not be part of their homework) the “theories of gameplay,” “the cultural and social issues surrounding video games” and the “art and design aspects of game development” (don’t just give the female characters huge pendulous breasts, give them a personality).
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