Visit our 2014 Holiday Gift Guides
Home > >

Do Too Many Kids Go To College?

POST A REPLY
 
Thread Tools
Nov 2, 2011, 5:01pm   #1
CuTe_ClAsSy's Avatar
Thread Starter
CuTe_ClAsSy
Member
Quote:
Do Too Many Kids Go To College?

by NPR Staff


October 18, 2011

Getting a college degree is often touted as a way to increase your income and your ability to compete in the job market.
But are too many unprepared students being pushed into taking on large amounts of debt? And would top students with an entrepreneurial bent be better off forgoing college and instead trying to become the next Steve Jobs?
A team of experts took on the topic in the latest debate from Intelligence Squared U.S. — the program's first live debate in Chicago. They faced off two against two on the motion "Too Many Kids Are Going To College."
Before the debate, the audience at Venue Six10 at the Spertus Center voted 39 percent in favor of the motion and 40 percent against, with 21 percent undecided. Following the debate, 47 percent agreed that "Too Many Kids Go To College" while 46 percent disagreed — giving the side arguing for the motion a narrow win. Seven percent remained undecided.

FOR THE MOTION

PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel is an advocate of young people's exploring alternatives to a college education. This year he launched the 20 Under 20 Thiel Fellowship, a two-year mentoring program that provides $100,000 in grants toward building the fellows' businesses in biotech, technology, finance, education and more. Thiel, an early investor in Facebook, currently serves as president of Clarium Capital Management LLC and managing partner of The Founders Fund, a Silicon Valley venture capital fund.
A political scientist, Charles Murray is the author of two widely debated social policy books, Losing Ground: American Social Policy, 1950–1980 and, with the late Richard J. Herrnstein, The Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life. In his most recent book, Real Education: Four Simple Truths for Bringing America's Schools Back to Reality, he argues that too many people are going to college.


AGAINST THE MOTION

Vivek Wadhwa is director of research at the Center for Entrepreneurship and Research Commercialization at Duke University and a senior research associate for the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School. Wadhwa advises several start-ups, founded two software companies and is a columnist for The Washington Post and Bloomberg Businessweek.
Henry Bienen, president emeritus of Northwestern University, launched his career in academics at Princeton University in 1966 as an assistant professor. Bienen is one of the first three university presidents awarded the Carnegie Corp. Academic Leadership Award. He is chairman of the board of Rasmussen College, on the board of the Chicago Public Schools and a member of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel's Economic Development and Planning Committee.
http://www.npr.org/2011/10/17/141434...-go-to-college

You can listen to the debate at the link if you want. There's also some interesting comments at the bottom of the page.

Interesting topic...thought this would be the most appropriate sub-forum. Anyone have any personal thoughts on the matter?
Nov 3, 2011, 1:11pm   #2
faith_ann's Avatar
faith_ann
came back haunted
Simply put, yes. I think we're seeing that proven in the US now, where the job market just can't absorb all the graduates. I don't think it's realistic to expect everyone to work at becoming the next Steve Jobs, but there are certainly a fair number of people who would be better off not attending college, starting work early in their desired career, and working their way up.
Nov 3, 2011, 1:35pm   #3
MCF's Avatar
MCF
Member
Originally Posted by faith_ann
Simply put, yes. I think we're seeing that proven in the US now, where the job market just can't absorb all the graduates. I don't think it's realistic to expect everyone to work at becoming the next Steve Jobs, but there are certainly a fair number of people who would be better off not attending college, starting work early in their desired career, and working their way up.
I agree with you. I think some people don't want to go to college but feel pressure to do so because they are told that is the only way to be able to make money. For example, all the children in my extended family (all the cousins) have been encouraged since birth to go to college. It didn't matter that as we grew it was clear that some of us were not destined to be strong in academia or jobs that require a higher education. One of my cousins really struggled in college and ended up dropping out causing a lot of tension in his family. Another never went but both of them are happier and more independent (and debt free) than those of us how did or are currently in college.

When I was younger I was told that if I had a college degree I pretty much could do anything I wanted and it would be like a security blanket to my future being successful. I know see that that is not always true. In middle school and high school I was under the impression that a college degree guaranteed a well paying job. It doesn't.

While I do really value my education and think people should try to be as educated as they can be I see how college is not for everyone and shouldn't be pushed upon people.
Nov 3, 2011, 11:18pm   #4
Jennifer_C's Avatar
Jennifer_C
Shopaholic
IMHO yes. Many are using it just as an excuse to delay joining "the real world" (one of my siblings included). As MCF wrote, a college degree doesn't guarantee a job so it shouldn't be a given that everyone should go. So many kids are coming out of college 100k+ in debt (or rather, many of their stupid parents have the debt) and they're taking entry-level jobs that didn't require degrees, now working beneath people younger than them that already advanced in the workplace.
Nov 4, 2011, 9:34am   #5
merika's Avatar
merika
Wol
Yes.
Nov 4, 2011, 7:06pm   #6
b
beantownSugar
J. lee
I don't really care ... I'd very over statistics like this and other bull$hit of the same.

My future kids will be going to college and my 2 youngest sisters will be going to college too unless they pop out facebook 2.0 *during* college a la Mark Zuckerburg. People should not skip college for the idea that they may start something. If you're smart enough to create something, college won't hold you back ... it can better you for doing so.

As as someone who spent a year out of college before going on to graduate school, the BARE MINIMUM for most jobs is a bachelor's degree - with high unemployment, people without degrees are screwed. I saw the job postings. Save for retail and food jobs, you need a degree, even administrative assistants.

I was raised to value education and see its necessity and my mind will never change.

And really, without a degree, what are you working up from? From team member at McDonalds to CEO? I don't think the shareholders are going to have that.
Nov 4, 2011, 7:24pm   #7
Jennifer_C's Avatar
Jennifer_C
Shopaholic
Originally Posted by beantownSugar
And really, without a degree, what are you working up from? From team member at McDonalds to CEO? I don't think the shareholders are going to have that.
Well... I made Vice President at an investment bank making 6 figures in my 20s without a degree so I guess there is something to be said for different paths for different people
Nov 4, 2011, 7:29pm   #8
b
beantownSugar
J. lee
Originally Posted by Jennifer_C
Well... I made Vice President at an investment bank making 6 figures in my 20s without a degree so I guess there is something to be said for different paths for different people
very true! you are definitely a statical oddity - that is highly impressive!
Nov 4, 2011, 7:39pm   #9
CuTe_ClAsSy's Avatar
Thread Starter
CuTe_ClAsSy
Member
Originally Posted by Jennifer_C
Well... I made Vice President at an investment bank making 6 figures in my 20s without a degree so I guess there is something to be said for different paths for different people
May I ask what year this was?
Nov 4, 2011, 7:41pm   #10
Jennifer_C's Avatar
Jennifer_C
Shopaholic
Originally Posted by CuTe_ClAsSy
May I ask what year this was?
That promotion was within the last 5 years.
Nov 4, 2011, 7:47pm   #11
CuTe_ClAsSy's Avatar
Thread Starter
CuTe_ClAsSy
Member
Originally Posted by Jennifer_C
That promotion was within the last 5 years.
Congrats!
Nov 4, 2011, 8:29pm   #12
Jennifer_C's Avatar
Jennifer_C
Shopaholic
Originally Posted by CuTe_ClAsSy
Congrats!
Thank you

I'll in no way downplay a college degree. It took me years of working 60-80 hours a week and often 100+ to get where I am. My life would have been easier with a degree but I would not be where I am today professionally had I gone that route. It had trade-offs too, my prioritizing work above things like dating. By the time my peers graduated I had multiple promotions under my belt and years of experience on them but I agree that that's not typical so I'd be hard-pressed to tell someone to try it.

Everything's a gamble I think the point I was trying to convey is that with this economy it might be time to rethink the whole "college is for everyone" path because there might be better alternatives for some individuals.
Nov 4, 2011, 9:14pm   #13
CuTe_ClAsSy's Avatar
Thread Starter
CuTe_ClAsSy
Member
Originally Posted by Jennifer_C
Thank you

I'll in no way downplay a college degree. It took me years of working 60-80 hours a week and often 100+ to get where I am. My life would have been easier with a degree but I would not be where I am today professionally had I gone that route. It had trade-offs too, my prioritizing work above things like dating. By the time my peers graduated I had multiple promotions under my belt and years of experience on them but I agree that that's not typical so I'd be hard-pressed to tell someone to try it.

Everything's a gamble I think the point I was trying to convey is that with this economy it might be time to rethink the whole "college is for everyone" path because there might be better alternatives for some individuals.
I agree.

Also, I admire your hardwork and ambition
Nov 13, 2011, 12:39am   #14
j
janesBydiction
Member
Yuppers. One path is not made for everyone and it seems from when you start high school it's almost ingrained that if you don't attend college you will be an unemployed shmuck.

A college degree is simply not as valuable as it once was due to over saturation of college degree graduates. Supply demand.
Nov 13, 2011, 12:50am   #15
mundodabolsa's Avatar
mundodabolsa
Member
for sure, this something I've felt very strongly about since I went to college over a decade ago. there were soooo many people who were there simply because it was the expected next step after high school, not because they had any real interest in learning or academics. they were there for the life experience, for the living away from home and partying. which is valuable, sure, but can be experienced without paying 40k + a year.

I just know too many people my age who have zero hope of ever being well off financially because of their student loan debt. it's like it was just totally normal and accepted for them to attend a college that was way out of their families' price range when other options existed.
POST A REPLY
  HOME > >  
TOP

Thread Tools