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Re: [BKARTS] conservation job at Harvard

I'm encouraged to see that there are many who feel the same way about degress
taking precedence over skill. The sad truth is, that were Mozart or
Michaelangelo alive today, they would not be acceptable to teach at the
elementary level, much less at a university. In my neck of the woods, day
care workers are, more often than not, required to have a degree in childhood
education. If everyone has to have a degree to get a job that will soon
render them meaningless. What will it signify to have a degree? If everybody
is special, nobody is special. I may incur the ire of many degree holders but
having a degree only says that one has had the diligence to complete a course
on a certain subject. It is not indicative that anything was learned. My son
is a high school history teacher, but I know far more history than he. The
truth, as I see it, is that a degree only says that you should know
something. Not that you do.

My question now is, what can be done to reverse the problem.  As far as the
book arts are concerned, I suggest that we revive the apprentice system. It
had much to recommend it.  The one obstacle I see to its reveval is, who
decideds when one become a master at his trade. I'm afraid that at this point
that the book arts guild  would be some elitist organization like the AIC.
But without a guild the apprentice system breaks down.

Surely there are folks among you, more intelligent than I, who can put their
heads together and work out a solution to the problem of proving oneself
qualified as a bbokbinder/ conservator, etc.

Ed Stansell

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