Briefly: I just listened to the most recent episode of the Big Web Show and am stashing it in a file for future students. Gruber and Zeldman discuss (among other things) education and how it helped–or didn’t–prepare them for careers in design/technology.
The takeaway? Your curiosity–and the opportunities that a course of study offers to develop that curiosity–is more valuable than any specific curriculum. Gruber, for example, talks about his experience working at the Drexel paper and how that fostered an interest in print design (and later web design). This is a familiar trope, but its frequency underscores its importance: Education and growth need to begin with curiosity.