“Other than the fact that my fellow Cal alums need to pick up their game, I don’t find this surprising. What’s surprising is Midas #7 Thiel’s insistance that higher ed is a bubble, that promising entrepreneurs should forego the proven power of academic networks like Stanford’s to join his micro-cohort of prodigies.
The same Midas list millionaire who benefited from an undergraduate and graduate degree at Stanford where he met and collaborated with his co-founder is encouraging kids to tune-in, turn-on and dropout to become entrepreneurs. Ironic that the direct beneficiary of superior higher ed is arguing so aggressively today that prize money and simple entrepreneurial freedom to fail can take the place of an organic entrepreneurial ecosystem growing from the nexus of superior higher education, government R&D, VC and an early adopter culture that spans consumer and corporate customers alike. What Bob Metcalfe calls the Doriot Ecology.
Rather than calling all top academic programs bubbles, Thiel should consider using his sizable fortune and influence to catalyze other ecosystems of entrepreneurship or simply champion academic excellence. There’s no doubt our nation’s educators could benefit from the clarity of vision and purpose that Thiel’s libertarian streak excites in every project he’s part of.”