Can a college education foster a YouTube career?

by Alcharles Castillo 361 views0

It takes all day to record a vlog, because once you have all the video clips, there are still another three to five hours of editing; would this be easier if you weren’t self taught?

For COC students wanting to grow a following and have a career in content creating on YouTube there are currently no programs that can help with this goal, according to COC PIO Eric Harnish.

Eric Harnish Photo by SCV News

“[There will soon be a] series of digital badges that are going to be focusing on Adobe programs,” Harnish said.

Digital badges are a program that will be offered through the continuing education department at COC, but there are currently no further details as to how the program will work.

Casey Neistat is a YouTube Creator that currently has over 10.5 million subscribers and over two billion views on his self-titled YouTube channel. However, his education is minimal, and he dropped out of high school to provide for his baby.

Casey Neistat

“Would I recommend it, absolutely not,” Neistat said.

While working traditional jobs, Neistat knew he wanted to become a filmmaker.

After finding success there, Neistat began daily vlogging on YouTube, since it offers a resemblance of creating small movies every day.

“If you don’t know what you want to do, your responsibility is to figure that out and

college is one of the best places,” Neistat said.

If higher education was an option for Neistat, he would have taken it.

Gary Vaynerchuk is a YouTube Creator who went to college then started a wine business. After his success, Vaynerchuk decided to change his focus and create a media company. Now his two channels, “GaryVee” and “AskGaryVee,” have more than 1.9 million subscribers.

Gary Vaynerchuk Photo by Motivation Addicts

“Meet people and make significant relationships,” Vaynerchuk said. “Enjoy the last vacation that looks like this in your life.”

Graduating with a bachelor’s degree, Vaynerchuk still believes that college is not as necessary as society believes it is. Saving the $20,000 for tuition and using it instead to travel to different parts of the world could teach you more than a year in college, he says.

While Vaynerchuk did go to college, his view of higher education is more than just attending an expensive university.

It seems that most successful YouTubers have previous experience in the content they go on to create. Neistat took his skills from being a self-taught filmmaker and put them into creating his unique style of vlogs that other successful YouTubers would later get inspiration from.

The same concept applied to Vaynerchuk, with his content revolving around the idea of business and motivation in following entrepreneurship.

Aside from channels that are managed by just one creator, there are channels such as “TEDx Talks” that serve as a platform for multiple speakers with different topics.

Megan Schwab Photo by TEDX Talk

“You can be anything you want to be as long as it’s a real job,” said Megan Schwab, a speaker for a TEDx event at Florida State University.

Schwab is an academic advisor for students studying chemistry, computer science and pre-med. But her topic did not involve medicine or science; she discussed the idea that your major in college will never matter.

The idea she expressed about having a real job is one that college students who want to become a YouTube Creator have to deal with constantly.

“93 percent of employers value creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving above any major you can use in college,” said Schwab.

Offering statistics to support her view on the decision for which major to study, she is still supporting the idea of higher education and going to college to figure out what you want to follow.

This seems to be a smart middle ground for students who are a bit more worried about their success without a college education. The best route to becoming a successful YouTube Creator and have a college education is to take film production or marketing in college an put those skills into creating content.

Also, study skills like photography and videography.

Melanie Whitney Photo by TEDX Talk

“Success is subjective,” Melanie Whitney, a TEDx speaker said. “Sometimes the things we want aren’t traditional and there isn’t a clear path to get there.”

Whitney is a communication studies professor at CSULB and spoke about the disconnect between having a college education and having future success in their field of study.

“I would rather live a life filled with failed attempts than a life wondering what could have been,” said Whitney.

The idea of programs and majors in college not fulfilling students’ needs for the career they wish to follow, lead to the question on how difficult it is to create a major at COC. It ultimately depends on the area, but it is a multi-step process and it does not occur overnight.

For a new major to be a part of the COC catalog there needs to be a business and industry for that career field. Once that is established, there must be job growth in that field and it should not be offered at the college already.

One of the issues with the process is the step that the major must be driven by faculty.

If students wish to have a YouTube Creator major, or even a certificate, they need the support of faculty members who often do not even watch YouTube content.

COC is attempting to offer more options and opportunities for their students to gain skills in a non-traditional way for their unique career from different resources of advising such as the new Hub service located next to the ASG computer lab. This service is a drop-in resource for quick advice on educational goals and assistance finding work in their field.

Although the peer advisers are not fully trained to discuss a specific path that can lead students to succeed in the field of YouTube Creation, they are trained to help as much as they can to find the best educational courses that can help you reach your goal.

There are no colleges in the U.S. that are offering programs or majors that support the career of becoming a YouTube Creator. But, most of the skills that you need to become a YouTube Creator can be learned through tutorials on YouTube.

The career field of becoming a YouTuber just seems to carry such a large gray area for success, making it look easy.

Once you begin to create content on YouTube it is the complete opposite, you see the workflow and how much you have to teach yourself most of the skills, causing a lot of stress that could have been aided by a college program.

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