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Thread: Is college a bust?

  1. #26

    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Whitfield View Post
    ...we know that colleges have monetary agendas that aren't always in students best interests and generating the big bux is big business for them. College sports is another part of the battle where schoolin' isn't the priority, there is lot's of $ tossed around and corruption is fairly rampant. I think we'll be seeing great changes in the whole scene quite soon, the bubble is about to burst and things will be evolving, hopefully in student's of all class levels favor. Some of the strongest minds come from middle and even poverty levels, and we've missed out on too much of that by not making cheap but fine ed available.
    Coincidentally, just yesterday finished reading Susan Coll's "Acceptance," a satire on the whole college admissions process. An amusing read, btw.

    Colleges cost money-->parents are under pressure to foot the bill, have spoiled their kids by giving them everything they want, and want their kids to do well-->pressure to get into the "right" school and the "right job" for bragging rights, perhaps a little bit in part to justify all the spoiling they did to their kids and so they can justify their parenting paying off (and all the money they're spending)?

    Doesn't change the fact that once you graduate, nobody really cares how well you did, just that you got your degree and are WILLING TO WORK, not just sit at your desk sneaking looks at your FB page. Doesn't seem like all college kids are ready accept that, especially if things came easily to them and they didn't have to work for anything. Then they throw tantrums when they enter the "real world" and everything isn't handed to them anymore. Then, no surprise, they end up in their parent's basements being coddled again. Not saying that all kids are like that, just that it seems many aren't learning life skills or how to persevere or how to handle rejection.

    Experience still carries a lot of weight too--so if you work your way up, you can often times still be successful, even without that college degree--and for many I think that means being in the right job at the right time in the right place. (Pardon my corruption of that famous Hawaiian saying.)

    I do think it's sad that there's so much pressure put on kids to go to college, Yes, it was an invaluable experience for me personally, but I also know it's not the route for everyone. People learn differently, not everyone's cut out for the college track--or perhaps it's not the right thing for them right out of high school.

    I was from an Asian household (not as extreme as "Tiger Mother," perhaps, but plenty of pressure nonetheless!). I remember hiding my handwriting papers in first grade because even then I was only allowed to get A's. (I was a lefty, cut me a break!) Indian kids are supposed to only be doctors, engineers, or in the computing fields. If I even attempted to think of entertaining a career in something "artsy," my parents would have had a heart attack, and as an Asian kid, I was raised to please my parents and do what they want. I love where I am in life right now, but I think a small part of me still wonders what would have happened if I had majored in English and followed that career path instead of what I do now.

    Who knows, maybe down the line I will find out!

    As Americans, we are taught that to be successful means to go to college, and it also seems to come with a fear that taking time off from your job to actually enjoy your life means you aren't serious about your career. And then the cycle continues into the next generation...

  2. #27
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Chaos, very nice analysis. Good job. Lots of "meat" in your dissertation. I think you can see the forest. A lot to ponder in what you say.

    Chaos, it is never too late to start a second career, even on a part time basis. Follow your dream.
    Peace, Love, and Local Grindz

    People who form FIRM opinions with so little knowledge only pretend to be open-minded. They select their facts like food from a buffet. David R. Dow

  3. #28
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by acousticlady View Post
    as to pubic vs private,
    Quote Originally Posted by Leo Lakio View Post
    Shouldn't both be rather private?
    OMG

    (had to delete your emoticons to include mine)

  4. #29
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    There are too many people getting bachelor's degrees for the wrong reasons - merely using higher education as a glorified "trade school." The purpose of higher education is to expand mind, soul, and curiosity. That is the message I'm trying to send in this thread.
    I believe in this idea so much, I have dedicated my life to it.


    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    And that is still true today. The majority of the people in those industries do not have a college degree. And that is okay, those are honorable professions. Higher education is not for everyone.
    Yes, you are correct in the sense of a traditional bachelor's degree, especially a liberal arts degree. But more and more, these individuals are being pressed into attending a community college or trade school - also leaving them strapped with student loans (see below) Wasn't there something recently about Obama wanting to see every student graduate at least community college? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/0..._n_233030.html (gotta love google)


    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    And there we disagree! Ms Lady you de-value yourself! YOU are QUALIFIED to be an intelligent, thoughtful, curious individual as demonstrated in your post. Explore the universe with confidence. Our self-education should never end.
    Please don't take that comment as a sign of insecurity or lack of self-confidence on my part in any way. My "problem" in reality is probably more to the other extreme. But, WRT what makes one "employable", degrees in physics and music theory do not "qualify" me for much outside of academia - but it specifically works for the role you are touting as the purpose of higher ed.


    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    How about the option of working full time and taking a full academic load; no loan needed. Yes, it is a lot of work but it is possible. Most students today, in my opinion, are lazy. Higher education for them is just a place to party, try to get a high paying job, and put off the debt until "some other time." These are people that will go through life bored.
    Sad, but true. I too, paid my own way and came out debt free. Got a full ride to grad school too. And for the record, I also worked AND raised a family while doing it. But we are of a different mind set (or generation maybe?) I think AbsolutChaos has it right in the paragraph regarding how parents are raising the kids these days and pressuring them to go to the right school, get the right job, etc.


    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    Here we go again, back to the job market! If that's all you are interested in, then higher education is probably not for you (using "you" in the general sense).
    I think the job market keeps coming up because it is, for many, at the heart of the problem of whether college is a worthwhile endeavor. Which goes back to what I was saying originally that too many are going to college for the wrong reasons (hence devaluing the degree).

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    You think you've seen them?! I've seen them in spades! Matapule had no problem with doing a student a favor in giving them a wake up call by "flunking them."
    You don't have to flunk them all the time. I find a "C" does amazing things. Again, it goes back to the individual. I, too, have pulled the "flunk" card on more than one occasion.

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    Matapule is a little embarrassed to tell you that he was kicked out of one college class (geography) for the day for being "disruptive." It was true, I deserved it. It was a wake up call. I went back to that class two days later with a whole new attitude!!!!!
    ha, ha

  5. #30

    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by acousticlady View Post
    parents are raising the kids these days and pressuring them to go to the right school, get the right job, etc.
    It's been going on for decades and has long contributed to and exacerbated the existing problems.

  6. #31
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Nice post, AbsolutChaos


    I bounced the whole student-loan/tuition-increase thing off my California/teacher friend, and he agreed:

    1) student loans are automatically given without regard for academic achievement or potential (much like the notorious No-Income No-Asset NINA loans born from the subprime mortgage debacle)

    2) colleges get paid up front, regardless of whether the student graduates or is competitive in the job market

    So basically anyone who can sign their name on a paper (maybe with a little help) is a cash cow which the colleges can milk. The University of Phoenix is a for-profit institution which has benefited from this new...opportunity. The new goal is to get more people through the system and make more $$$. Also, colleges are motivated to spend a lot of money on things which make them more attractive to potential students, which may have nothing to do with giving them a better education.

    Of course there are other causes for tuition hikes. Economic troubles mean college endowments are less able to subsidize education costs. Weakened local economies means less tax money for public school budgets.


    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    How about the option of working full time and taking a full academic load; no loan needed. Yes, it is a lot of work but it is possible. Most students today, in my opinion, are lazy.
    It definitely would be refreshing to see, instead of the buy-now-pay-later(never?) attitude the credit card companies have taught us. Or maybe even work first, save up the money, and then go to school. I imagine that would produce a very motivated student.

    You think you've seen them?! I've seen them in spades! Matapule had no problem with doing a student a favor in giving them a wake up call by "flunking them."
    People need tough love, and it takes more strength to dispense it.

    Matapule is a little embarrassed to tell you that he was kicked out of one college class (geography) for the day for being "disruptive."
    People constantly make mistakes. What they do to better themselves is the way to judge their character.

    Here we go again, back to the job market! If that's all you are interested in, then higher education is probably not for you (using "you" in the general sense).
    Universities do confuse the matter, because they contain both vocational (med, law, engineering, etc.) and humanity colleges.

    Joe, did you go the school with the philosophy that your mind was just a bucket to be filled with "knowledge you were forced to learn?"
    I was pretty mindless. I just went because it was the "next thing to do", and I didn't have anything better in mind. I chose my major because I liked math. I entered school when the job market was horrible, and it was just luck that I graduated during the dot.com bubble.

    I was annoyed with being forced to take classes not related to my major, but with age I can see (some of) their value...though I bet universities liked the extra credit hours they could charge.

    Did anything you learned in school light your fire - turn you on?
    Sadly, the classes which lit my fire were all 4th year classes, which I found to be a shame. If I was exposed to them in the beginning, I would have been much more motivated.

    Anyways, the things that lit my fire are rarely found in the working world. In hindsight, I should have gotten my PhD and pursed theoretical research...maybe.

    I went back to higher education 10 years after my first degree, when I was better able to put 10 years of real life experience into following my passion.
    Older students make for better students, because they want to be there and they know why they're there.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Whitfield View Post
    being a big brained academic can leave you vulnerabe to the many dangers outside the classroom.
    True true. There are many different types of "intelligence". You can be a genius in one area, and be a total idiot in another.


    Quote Originally Posted by acousticlady View Post
    Sad, but true. I too, paid my own way and came out debt free. Got a full ride to grad school too. And for the record, I also worked AND raised a family while doing it. But we are of a different mind set (or generation maybe?)
    /applaud

    A stronger work ethic is more common in older generations; you all work hard for the sake of working hard. My generation seems to feel: "I'll work hard if you give me a good reason to."

    You don't have to flunk them all the time. I find a "C" does amazing things. Again, it goes back to the individual. I, too, have pulled the "flunk" card on more than one occasion.
    Heh heh. I bet you could motivate pre-med students with a B+
    "By concealing your desires, you may trick people into being cruel about the wrong thing." --Steven Aylett, Fain the Sorcerer
    "You gotta get me to the tall corn." --David Mamet, Spartan
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    Amateurs talk technology, professionals talk conditions." --(unknown)

  7. #32
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by matapule View Post
    I hate math
    You should check this article out:
    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com...to-teach-math/

    I'm gonna try teaching part the JUMP Math program to adults this summer; it'll be my first class room experience.

    They've made a lot of their material free for download (you just need to create an account):
    http://jumpmath1.org/publications
    "By concealing your desires, you may trick people into being cruel about the wrong thing." --Steven Aylett, Fain the Sorcerer
    "You gotta get me to the tall corn." --David Mamet, Spartan
    "
    Amateurs talk technology, professionals talk conditions." --(unknown)

  8. #33
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by MyopicJoe View Post
    You should check this article out:
    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com...to-teach-math/

    I'm gonna try teaching part the JUMP Math program to adults this summer; it'll be my first class room experience.

    They've made a lot of their material free for download (you just need to create an account):
    http://jumpmath1.org/publications
    Very interesting. I have signed up for more info. I can easily see this working on my "nonscience" students.

  9. #34
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    Default Re: Is college a bust?

    Quote Originally Posted by acousticlady View Post
    Very interesting. I have signed up for more info. I can easily see this working on my "nonscience" students.
    Cool! If you decide to give it a try, let me know how it goes. I hope I do a good job with my students. At least they're adults who want to be there, and there will only be 3-4 of them. Building their self-confidence will be my biggest challenge (in addition to learning the material myself).
    "By concealing your desires, you may trick people into being cruel about the wrong thing." --Steven Aylett, Fain the Sorcerer
    "You gotta get me to the tall corn." --David Mamet, Spartan
    "
    Amateurs talk technology, professionals talk conditions." --(unknown)

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