Saturday, 8 October 2011

Academic excellence guarantees a successful life. Do you agree?

This topic also has been discussed with my upper six this year and they have written their version of the article. This sample answer shows beside the appropriate approach and language, how ideas should be generated and developed. The bold phrase at the beginning of each paragraph is the main idea, and after the details it is closed with a summary that relates the argument with the topic.

No. I simply do not agree that academic excellence guarantees a successful life. If academic excellence means having a degree from a university, and a successful life is where a person is able to get whatever he desires and be happy  with it, than there are other elements in life that helps in making life a success.

It is obvious that during the last decade, academic qualification does not guarantee jobs for graduates, much to the frustration of the youngsters, who, throughout their university days were hoping for guaranteed posts in government agencies or steady private firms. Thousands were seen applying for jobs that were unpopular before, taking the teaching profession for example, where only a handful were recruited. Graduates without the extra qualities like the desire to move on, motivation, and communications skills will be left out, proving that academic excellence is not the license for a successful life.

The blue-collar sector promises bright future for the non performing school students. The vast and rapid development of the various industries in the country, led by the successful automotive sector, has provided jobs for those with skills rather than academic qualification. School leavers with vocational skills, taking automotive as example, see better future compared to their counterparts on the academic line.  Thus, it is a common scene nowadays to see mechanics and technicians in the various fields doing well in life, even without academic excellence.

Some people who excel in academics do manage to land in secured jobs in the government and corporate giants, and went on to the highest and powerful position. These are the few lucky ones, as in most cases, there are other factors that help determine their success. It is not a secret that cronyism and nepotism are being practised everywhere, much to the dismay of those who depend only on academic qualification. Unless they really stand out with brilliant and extremely noticeable performance, they should be prepared to be ordinary officers up to the day of retirement. This is evidence that excellence in academic alone does not guarantee success.

There are also people without academic excellence doing well in business. Through sheer determination and the urge to succeed, plus a little bit of aid from the bank perhaps, people have proven to be successful, earning way more than the salary of chief executives in the corporate sectors. In fact, with a hand from political influences, some are able to secure projects worth millions of ringgits. Would academic excellence be able provide this?

To conclude, academic excellence does help comfort a person’s life, securing him a career to earn a living. Nonetheless, it is simply not enough to guarantee that he will be successful in life, as it takes a lot of other factors to achieve it.

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