University classrooms not enough for real-life experience, says startup founder Yeo

Like Oswald Yeo there are many successful personalities who followed their dreams and not merely books

Classroom studies are not enough
Students in university (Representational picture) Pixabay

When people came to know that a man called Oswald Yeo has left University of California, Berkeley to establish his start-up full time in 2016 they thought that he might have lost his mind but his University friends supported his decision, as he received funding to follow his dreams.

According to reports, he said that even though his family and friends raised questions on his decision, he felt lucky to see the contrast between two cultures and learned so much during his six months of studying business.

Despite the fact that he dropped out from a top university, the experience that he gathered is more valuable. Yeo found a three-month start-up boot camp that he attended in 2015 and consider it as more useful than the time he spent while studying business.

Yeo said that whatever he was learning in the university, he had no relation to the real business experience. So because of that, he wanted to focus on his own company.

Yeo is one of the three co-founders of the company Glint, which is an online talent recruitment and career discovery platform.

As of now, more than 9,700 companies have signed up with Yoe's company. Since 2015, Glint has raised more than $3m in funding.

Yeo believes that higher education is not limited to classroom studies. It is all about real life experience like an internship.

In a program named Disruptions in Education (DisruptED), co-organized by The Straits Times and the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM), Yeo will be one of the key speakers, which will take place on February 3, Saturday at SIM Global Education campus in Clementi Road.

The Senior Minister of State for Education and Communications and Information, Janil Puthucheary is invited as the guest of honor.

The counselor of education at the Finnish National Agency for Education, Kristina Kaihari, and the founder of Minerva, whose main objective to reinvent higher education, Ben Nelson will chair as the panelists of the program.

Lee Kwok Cheong, chief executive of SIM Global Education and Charles Zukoski, executive vice-president for academic affairs at the University at Buffalo, New York will also join the forum.

However, Yeo said that studying in University is required, along with schooling where people can build their skills and networks but if someone wants to achieve more, then it would not be enough.

He also mentioned about the confusion which comes exactly after stepping into the real-life situation. People often find difficulties while dealing with employers, as they cannot understand what actually needs to be done.

If we look into the history of famous people, who dropped out of universities for a great cause, the huge list will include personalities like Bill Gates, who left Harvard University to focus on Microsoft, including co-founder Paul Allen, who ditched Washington State University to join Gates.

The co-founder of tech giant Apple, Steve Jobs is also known as a successful millionaire who did not finish his college.

There are some other personalities like Yeo, who did not consider classroom studies as the key source to get real-world experience including Oprah Winfrey, who left Tennessee State University to pursue a career in media, Michael Dell, the founder of tech company Dell started to build his own start-up from the dorm room of University of Texas, Matt Mullenweg the mind behind WordPress left the University of Houston to create his own destiny.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is also included in this list, co-founder of Spotify Daniel Ek also dropped out of a university in Sweden and Arash Ferdowsi left Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and co-founded DropBox.