5000 PhD Janitors

So now we know how many Ph.D.’s it takes to change a light bulb. Around 5,000 in the US alone. According to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics report:

“Over 317,000 waiters and waitresses have college degrees (over 8,000 of them have doctoral or professional degrees), along with over 80,000 bartenders, and over 18,000 parking lot attendants. All told, some 17,000,000 Americans with college degrees are doing jobs that the BLS says require less than the skill levels associated with a bachelor’s degree.”

via 5,000 janitors in the U.S. with Ph.D.s–Bureau of Labor Statistics

The whole business raises interesting questions.

In a world where the half-life of information in many fields decreases every year, should doctoral degrees deserve high marks for return on investment?

Should college and graduate degrees get redesigned for more productive career pathways?

Should we require for graduation from college the demonstration of career architecture competencies?