Dumas was surprised that a professor of socialist history at U. Berkeley, of all people, was incredibly upset upon discovering his shenanigans.
Dumas does not regret any of it: he has learned a lot and his lack of degree has not hurt his career in any way, since he has gone on to become an entrepreneur. Dumas stops short of recommending that other people also crash elite colleges.
“I think of it as an act of political protest,” he tells me, in his French Canadian accent.
“I was angry at how university education excludes people who cannot afford it.
What happened to the belief that sharing knowledge and great ideas should be free?
” Attending these universities without actually graduating from any of them was also a kind of experiment to figure out what, exactly, a university degree can get you in life.
At the end of all this, he never received a degree.
“It’s what I thought I had to do.” But, like many other 18-year-olds, once he got there, he felt restless and unsure of what he wanted to do with his life. He liked taking psychology classes, but he was equally drawn to physics and philosophy.For entrepreneurs, freelancers, and tech workers, demonstrating what you are able to produce is far more valuable than where your degree is from–or whether you have one at all.“There are so many famous dropouts in the tech world–Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg,” he says.But Dumas also believes that society has overstated the value of a degree.
There are many industries where what matters is your output.While Dumas is now a strong critic of the higher education system, he first started campus hopping around North America because it seemed like good fun.