I just graduated from college. Last March I attended a job fair at a nearby college. They were hiring students from Professional Degree A (These people have got good theoretical knowledge but lacks programming knowledge) and Masters Degree B (Knows programming really well. I belonged to this category). I got selected and was offered a job with good package. I was happy that there were no contracts (bond) in their offer. They also told me that I will be receiving salary from day 1 including the training period of 6 months. After a week, they sent me offer letter via email which I acknowledged and accepted.

Last month, I received an email from HR asking me to go through a list of topics which might be helpful for me during the training period. Frankly speaking, I was not impressed by the list of topics provided. Most of topics I was very familiar with. Since most of the selected students were from professional degree A and only a few were there from B, it was very clear why they had chosen these topics. Before this I was really considering to relocating to join. But after reading this email, I started thinking about my career ambitions. From my childhood itself, I wanted to be entrepreneur. I really wanted an offer that would help me learn many new things and also to get some savings.

I starting considering rejecting the offer. I'm sure that I have every right to do that. But I don't want to create a bad impression about me or not want them to even think anything negative about me. I don't have any other offers if I quit this job, but I'm pretty sure that I will find one that suits my needs as well as one that helps me learn a lot of new things. I can contact HR via phone or email. Even if I call them, there is 100% chance that I will have to send an email regarding the same. I don't want to tell them that I didn't like the topics they have planned for training.

Please advise me how to handle this situation.

  • 2
    Have you considered forwarding this email to your future manager and starting a discussion? Express that you were hoping that topics would include X, Y, Z, etc. How would I go about learning about these new topics as an employee? and so on.
    – JeffC
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 17:49
  • Is this your first "real-paid" employment ?
    – Criggie
    Commented Jun 18, 2019 at 0:55

4 Answers 4


Please don't judge the organization based on a group email from Human Resources!

They probably have a new-hire checklist they're following. They probably have a few-years-old email message they send to everybody. They, almost certainly, did not write this email and have superficial knowledge (if that) of what it contains. Plus, they mentioned "topics which might be helpful." "Might" is the key word here. Give them a break.

Look at it this way: they have a new-hire process! Many companies don't even try to help new hires get started.

  • 5
    Voting for this: back then in 200x-s (which is relatively recent time) when I had my first job the process of helping new employees was near unheard of (it was: you're now in the team, good luck, buddy, your colleague Jim will explain you all you need to know) and using the word "onboarding" in the conversation would confuse people as they didn't know the proper meaning.
    – Alma Do
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 14:58
  • 4
    Reminds me of Bezos's decision making process--is this reversible or non-reversible? It seems like moving and working at this job for a while is reversible (more or less easily, if you try to get month-to-month rent on an apartment), but quitting now without another offer in hand is not so reversible. Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 18:24
  • I agree with this. Even IF you end up not enjoying what they offer, be someone that effects change in the company! Show initiative! It shows a lot of character to do that. If the company resists and you still don't like it after a year, the next company will respect the year you gave the first company and the explanation for leaving of, "they were not able to offer what I needed for my career goals"
    – Jeff.Clark
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 21:15

Last month, I received an email from HR asking me to go through a list of topics which might be helpful for me during the training period. Frankly speaking, I was not impressed by the list of topics provided. Most of topics I was very familiar with. Since most of the selected students were from professional degree A and only a few were there from B, it was very clear why they had chosen these topics.

If the list of topics for the training, you feel as though is duplicative of your existing education, you should communicate that to HR. You could ask if there could be coverage of more advanced topics, if you could be exempted from attending the training or if the students from the different degree programs could be split into two groups.

My guess is that training is meant to get all of the new hires up to the same level coming from different backgrounds. It could be that you're familiar with the topics they're covering, but they might be covering them more specific to the use cases at the DOJ. It's important for me to note that building your career isn't just about focusing your hard skills either. Because the training will be easier for you, you could focus more on building your professional network during your training period.

In summary, it's a little early to reject the job right now without seeing if they could make some accommodations for you. I recommend talking to HR first and go from there.

  • I really want to reject this offer. I got opportunity to sit in placements from my college, I'm worried whether rejecting the offer will do any harm to students from my junior batches.
    – Mr Emp
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 10:08
  • 2
    @MrEmployee sounds like a stretch that it'd harm any of those students to be honest. Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 14:39
  • 11
    @DylanMeeus At my college, companies have entirely withdrawn from ever attending career events because of one or two students pulling out of signed offers. It's unlikely, yes, but not a stretch. It just depends on how irrational the humans in charge are.
    – anon
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 14:45
  • 3
    I started writing an answer but stopped because it was largely a duplicate of this. The one thing I would add - even training material and the job are beneath your skill set, that's not inherently a bad thing - by taking this job, you may be able to set yourself up for rapid promotion compared to your peers.
    – dwizum
    Commented Jun 17, 2019 at 15:19
  • 1
    @NicHartley I stand corrected in that case :) Commented Jun 18, 2019 at 7:34

IMHO you are being a little naive and you are not judging the situation and it’s potential for you correctly. Or you completely misunderstood what that company does and should be looking for completely different job in some highly specialized areas.

Let me expand:

If you are familiar with all those topics and you can skip all those trainings - that means in your first year you‘ll spend more time working compared to type A and you‘ll have the chance to show your skills. Your boss will notice this, believe me. They see who gets things done and who doesn’t. Somebody training a topic will not be as good as someone who already masters it.

What I‘m trying to let shine through is that you should see your having an edge over your peers as an opportunity to significantly boost your career. Whereas type A grad might take 2 years to drop of that ‚junior‘ from the title, you might already be doing that after a year.

Also, I don‘t know what your job is about, but for me in a project-oriented environment (i.e. we mostly write SW for others rather than our own product), I‘ve learned that getting to know your customer and learning fast the business-domain of the software you are writing, is just as important as mastering the tools. Again: having an advantage in the tools should also give you an advantage in the business since you can explore an existing project faster than the guy who is just learning about how to use a terminal, a build tool and an IDE. The key here is that you need to be able to absorb complex topics within reasonable time in all dimensions (businesswise and technical).

I promise you: those intricate, obscure, latest technical features of a tool/language will not make you more valuable in 95% of all IT jobs - but being good at applying the „regular“ stuff, learning fast a new tech when it‘s needed and being able to communicate clearly complex ideas in simple terms, that‘s what matters mostly.

The above mentioned skills will always be valuable, but of course this is less important, if you want to go into an area where you write highly specialized and heavily optimized code (physics, gpu, OS, embeded systems, etc..). If this is the thing you want to do, then you are probably looking at the wrong job.

But if you think the things you‘ll do on the job are interesting, then you should not worry about those trainings. Don‘t choose the job based on the trainings you get - you are out of school, you should be „done with the learning“. You are not going for a job to get some good trainings and learn more theory, but to become better at writing professional, practical, productive code. If you want to „learn“ more stuff, take some online courses or read it up in your free time (maybe work part-time to get more free time). If you don‘t need those trainings you have an advantage over your peers at that. If you think you’ll like the stuff you would do on that job, then why not try to profit from that advantage?

(Learn in quotes, because of the kind of learning - obviously we never should stop learning)


You don't mention which country you are in. But I think you're not thinking this out properly. You say you're considering rejecting the offer. But you have already accepted the offer, by this previous email exchange. In many places this alone would be considered a contract. So what you're really considering here is quitting before you start the job you committed to, which is a completely different topic. Depending on your location, there may well be legal ramifications if you don't show up on the day agreed to. And will this hurt your professional reputation? You bet..

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