Though Walker attended Marquette University, he left before graduating, which has caused some finger-wagging from the usual journalistic suspects. After all, they seem to believe, everyone they know has a college degree, so it must be essential to getting ahead. As the successful governor of an important state, you’d think that Walker’s subsequent career would make his college degree irrelevant, but you’d be wrong.
Reynolds makes a trenchant point here: The notion that a sitting governor of a medium-sized state who’s won three statewide elections is somehow less qualified to be president because he’s a semester short on credits seems really ludicrous. I might have my doubts about, say, Walker’s education policies, but I don’t doubt that he’s qualified to run for president. Walker has a clear record of achievement, and that’s what matters. Heck, achievement should be the primary thing that matters when assessing anyone over the age of 30 who’s not applying for an advanced degree somewhere.
When If Walker runs for president, the things that should really matter are his policy platform and his record as governor of Wisconsin.
And that’s why a President Walker would accomplish something worthwhile the moment he took office. Over the past few years in America, a college degree has become something valued more as a class signifier than as a source of useful knowledge….Of course, some of our greatest presidents, from George Washington to Abraham Lincoln to Harry S. Truman, never graduated from college….Already people can point to tech pioneers like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs as evidence that a college degree isn’t essential to getting ahead. But just as electing America’s first black president had a resonance that no other achievement did, so, perhaps, electing America’s first non-college-grad president in many decades will serve to remind people that a college degree isn’t the be-all and end-all, and that accomplishments and practical skills are, in the end, more important than credentials. It would be educational.