College degrees may be a rip-off
In the past a bachelor’s degree may have been a “golden” ticket to a richer more intellectually fulfilling life but with the soaring tuition rates and current unemployment levels it’s not just William Bennett who is questioning whether college is worth it. In fact, some experts suggest that it may be better to invest tuition in stocks or another investment rather than in our nation’s colleges.
What does CNN report?
According to a recent survey out Tuesday there are an estimated “41% of college graduates from the last two years stuck in jobs that don’t require a degree.” The survey was conducted by Consulting firm Accenture who talked to 1,005 students who graduated from college in 2011 and 2012. Of the questioned graduates 11% were not just underemployed, they were unemployed with an estimated 7% stating they had not gotten a job since they graduated from college.
What was the complaint of most of the graduates? Many believed they might have been better served if they had pursued a different major. In fact, nearly two-thirds of those questioned suggested they did not get the training they needed in college to pursue their career and would need additional training. Some stated that they would move straight to graduate school.
Employment rate remains high for College graduates
Unfortunately the jobs report is still grim. Unemployment rates remain at 7.6%. Graduates with no work experience, however, could fare much worse. What can be done? Job experts suggest that as the job market improves businesses and colleges should work together. Colleges need to do a better job preparing their students to enter the job market.
What does William Bennett suggest?
In his new book, Is College Worth It?, William Bennett, the Former Education Secretary, reviews whether college is the best solution for most students. He also challenges the traditional four year residential university model and questions whether some students might be better served by a more non-traditional approach to education such as online courses. Currently new efforts are being made to create programs which offer individualized instruction in the form of grading, testing, student-to-student help and certificates of completion. The greatest benefit of some of these offerings is reduced cost.
Bennett suggests education is ready for a revolution. College in its present form is too expensive for many families. Maybe years ago when a good job was guaranteed the question of whether to saddle yourself with thousands of dollars of debt might make sense. Now without the guarantee of employment after graduation families must ask different questions.
Bennett suggests, “It’s time for parents and students to look at the entire enterprise of higher education and ask — how, when, where, for whom, in what studies and at what cost is a college education appropriate?”
Is America ready to accept that most jobs can be done without a four year college degree? Taking out loans you may not be able to afford is not smart, and that’s something I didn’t have to go to college to figure out.
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