- 10/16/2015 11:34:27 PM
@Jamescon, I agree with you. What I detect in academia and among commentators, however, is that people expect and want higher ed to deliver even more specialized students, quicker. They don't want higher ed "wasted" on liberal arts or general studies. Instead, learn a trade, get on track for a profession, become a productive, practical member of society, and get a job. Now.
- 10/15/2015 10:30:06 AM
@Broadway. Good points about liberal arts and business majors and post high school technical schools. One thing I've never understood is why we essentially lock kids into a decision on what they want to be when they grow up by having them pick a career path when they are 16 or 17 and starting to look at schools. Most kids have no clue what people do in different professions (other than those of their parents, teachers and family friends). There's a stigma to being the kid at graduation who gets the diploma and hears, "Johnny is going to Small Town Community College for general studies".
I saw this pattern when my kids and their friends were going through high school and into college. Of course, at least half of them never continued with advanced studies or careers in what they chose at 17. Hopefully they found something they like much better.
Liberal arts, business, STEM, trade school? How about a year or two of general education that prepare them for life outside of Small Town USA? Then, maybe they can make a real career decision.
- 10/14/2015 10:29:57 PM
@rbaz, I don't think people argue against higher education. I think there's the case to be made against the "luxury" of liberal arts education for everyone (internationally, undergrad business degrees are far more prevalent). And I think there's the case to made for post-high school technical educations that are more sophisticated than what's out there now. And there's the case to be made for bigger roles for community colleges. All can have value and all do not require the big loans that today's nonprofit and for-profit models require.
- by kq4ym, Data Doctor
- 10/14/2015 12:31:30 PM
That's probably a good analysis. The inelastic nature of the producct, a college degree, forces folks to buy into college no matter what. The enticement of fairly easy to get, but expensive loans brings in a good supply of students who know the alternative of no higher education, is going to harm them in the long run.
- 10/14/2015 9:47:58 AM
@Broadway. Good point about the stronger feelings (pro and con) regarding someone's undergrad school. Undergrad is a first step into real adulthood for many, so expectations are high. Plus many of the experiences associated with undergrad (social, travel, etc.) may have nothing to do with the education. Grad school is more likely to be focused on the learning elements, and to be more closely tied to job preparation. Less excitement, and more of a "get the job done" feeling?
- 10/13/2015 10:33:27 PM
@Jamescon, anecdotally speaking, people tend to have stronger feelings toward their undergrad institution than where they got their graduate degree. That's not a hard and fast rule, and certainly alumni's impressions of a school may be tinged if they went into heavy debtload to attend and didn't get a career out of it to justify that expense...
- 10/13/2015 9:32:40 AM
Thanks for the info about the Duke B-school, TinyM. I'll use my Superman-class powers as editor and share the link
Someone made a good point about the difference in how alumni (those surveyed for Duke) view their education a few years down the road and how current students (those surveyed for Harvard and Wharton) view the schools. They pointed out that alumni may be likely to have fond memories of their school days. I guess that's true for some graduates, such as those who get an MBA and move on to Wall Street or into a boardroom. I suspect that's less likely for the average Joe.
- by Michelle, Data Doctor
- 10/12/2015 6:56:00 PM
Did you think business schools would be releasing survey data when you were writing this piece?
Duke and Wharton surveyed alumni using the Net Promoter method. Results of the the Duke survey were published in Poets & Quants last week. URLs are blocked in comments so here's the article title: Duke Fuqua: The iPhone Of B-Schools?
- by PredictableChaos, Data Doctor
- 10/6/2015 2:04:11 PM
many employers today view young workers as disposable help.
Unpaid internships seem to be growing in popularity. I'm sure some are wonderful. But most recent graduates can't afford to take one. It won't pay the student loans.
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- by James M. Connolly