One of the most maddening aspects of my college education was that despite the dull and useless nature of many of my required courses I had no choice but to take them. You just can't buck tradition, everyone said, even if no one quite remembers why the tradition was started in the first place. Charles Darwin felt much the same during his time at the University of Edinburgh, and he too tried to only attend lectures that were of interest to him. Charles' father did not care for his son's lackadaisical attitude towards school, though, and in an 1826 letter Charles' sister Susan Elizabeth relayed the Dr.'s disapproval;
My reason for writing so soon is, that I have a message from Papa to give you, which I am afraid you won't like; he desires me to say that he thinks your plan of picking & chusing what lectures you like to attend, not at all a good one; and as you cannot have enough information to know what may be of use to you, it is quite necessary for you to bear with a good deal of stupid & dry work: but if you do not discontinue your present indulgent way, your course of study will be utterly useless.
and don't even think of going gallivanting around the world like a mad sailor, what will the neighbors say...
(first thing that popped in my mind)
That's why skipping classes was invented.
Was man nicht weiÃ, das eben brauchte man, //
Und was man weiÃ, kann man nicht brauchen."
"What man knows not, is needed most by man,
And what man knows, for that no use has he."
- Faust I, Vers 1064 ff. /
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)
That gives me immeasurable hope for the future, after pre-requisites.
I'm in the midst of college now and I've been trying to weave my way into a major without taking those extremely dull prerequisites. It's not entirely working, however it has led me to take very strange classes.