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The Great College-Degree Scam (the current problem of employability is not a new problem)
Pajamas Media ^ | 12/10/2010 | Pajamas Media

Posted on 12/20/2010 8:56:04 AM PST by SeekAndFind

The Center for College Affordability and Productivity (CCAP) has unearthed what I think is the single most scandalous statistic in higher education. It reveals many current problems and ones that will grow enormously as policymakers mindlessly push enrollment expansion amidst what must become greater public-sector resource limits.

Here it is: approximately 60 percent of the increase in the number of college graduates from 1992 to 2008 worked in jobs that the BLS considers relatively low skilled—occupations where many participants have only high school diplomas and often even less. Only a minority of the increment in our nation’s stock of college graduates is filling jobs historically considered as requiring a bachelor’s degree or more.

Meaning that the — inflated — tuition they’re paying is basically wasted. Remember this when you hear for-profit schools singled out for overpromising. I think the traditional higher-education sector has a lot of explaining to do, too. More:

The data suggest a horrible decline in the productivity of American education in that the “inputs” used to achieve any given human capital (occupational) outcome have expanded enormously. More simply, it takes 18 years of schooling (including kindergarten and the typical fifth year of college to get a bachelor’s degree) for persons to get an education to do jobs that a generation or two ago people did with 12-13 years of education (graduating more often from college in four years and sometimes skipping kindergarten). . . . All of this supports the notion that credential inflation arises from a perceived need by individuals to demonstrate potential employment competence through a piece of paper, i.e. a college diploma. Employers are using education as a screening and signaling device, at a low cost directly to them (although not costless because of the taxes they pay to sustain much of this), but at a high cost to the perspective employees and to society as a whole.

Read the whole thing. Some further background is here and here.


TOPICS:
KEYWORDS: college; degree; scam; university
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1 posted on 12/20/2010 8:56:11 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

“Meaning that the — inflated — tuition they’re paying is basically wasted.”

Well ... you can become POtuS without ever showing anyone your records ...


2 posted on 12/20/2010 8:58:36 AM PST by jessduntno (Care what the Left thinks of you? "Their opinion of me and my policies is irrelevant." - Dick Cheney)
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To: SeekAndFind

So what. Getting an education is a good thing. Please don’t tell me that FREEPERS are anti- college education now all of a sudden.


3 posted on 12/20/2010 9:01:11 AM PST by napscoordinator
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To: SeekAndFind
Interesting.

Karl Denninger also has some interesting takes on this:

You Mean Colleges Scam Students?

The Case For And Against College

4 posted on 12/20/2010 9:01:48 AM PST by FReepaholic (Yoiks...and away!!)
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To: SeekAndFind
with 12-13 years of education (graduating more often from college in four years and sometimes skipping kindergarten). .

That's 16 years, not 12-13.

5 posted on 12/20/2010 9:03:05 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: napscoordinator
...Please don’t tell me that FREEPERS are anti- college education now all of a sudden...

Of course. One person posts one article so that means all of Free Republic is "anti-college".

6 posted on 12/20/2010 9:03:39 AM PST by FReepaholic (Yoiks...and away!!)
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To: FReepaholic

Oops. Maybe I did over do it a bit.


7 posted on 12/20/2010 9:05:46 AM PST by napscoordinator
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To: SeekAndFind

The problem really is the entitlement mentality that has grown up around a degree. If you are getting an education for the purpose of being an educated man, then you have no false expectations about the kind of job you are going to get. You will get an education, and then you will look for work. You will find an opening and plan to work your way up as you learn the ropes and prove yourself worthy.

But too many people have the idea that a degree means that you must be issued a job in accordance to your (elevated) station in life. Which means they will be highly disappointed when the discover that a welder with a rig in the back of his pickup is making more money than he is. Which might actually contribute to the kind of resentment we sometimes see against industries that generate well-paid blue-collar employment.


8 posted on 12/20/2010 9:06:37 AM PST by marron
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To: napscoordinator

I think we made a mistake in insisting that college was the only way to correctly enter the workforce, in any career.

I do believe we neglected the other paths.


9 posted on 12/20/2010 9:07:19 AM PST by Warren_Piece (Smart is easy. Good is hard.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Yes, they often take entry level jobs that do not require a college degree. If they ever want a promotion, however, they usually will need that degree. Much easier to get it in 4 years when you are 18-22 and have few responsibilities than to do it when you are older, have a full-time job, a mortgage, and kids. I still think a college education, in the long run, pays off if you are not going to be self-employed.


10 posted on 12/20/2010 9:07:41 AM PST by wolfman23601
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To: napscoordinator
I'm all for education, but the money that universities charge for one now is way too high. It's unjustified. In terms of a job-winning credential, universities and colleges are pricing themselves right out of the cost-benefit analysis.

But if it's the education you're really looking for and you don't care about the paper, you can generally get that at the public library.

11 posted on 12/20/2010 9:09:30 AM PST by Oberon (Big Brutha Be Watchin'.)
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To: FReepaholic

I like the ‘case against’. Right. The dude can live his whole life on $10 an hour and still save $2000 an year?


If we save $2,000 a year @ 4.5% interest for 47 years we will wind up with $307,345.27. If we do so for 42 years we wind up with $237,849.58.

This means that in future values that five years costs you about $70,000 down the road.


12 posted on 12/20/2010 9:09:32 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: napscoordinator

RE: Please don’t tell me that FREEPERS are anti- college education now all of a sudden.


I don’t think FReepers are anti-college per se, many however are questioning whether some degrees and courses offered have ANY RELEVANCE to finding a job at all and if it is even WORTH paying or going into debt to the tune of $30,000 or more tuition every year to study such courses.

Some are asking whether there are better alternatives...


13 posted on 12/20/2010 9:11:58 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: napscoordinator

> So what. Getting an education is a good thing. Please don’t tell me that FREEPERS are anti- college education now all of a sudden.

Not anti-college education, but there needs to be some common sense applied.
Case in point: A friend’s daughter recently graduated from a university with a 4 year degree in performing arts and $211,000 in loans over her 5 year term of learning.
She currently earns $13/hr. How will she ever pay this off?
Answer. She won’t. In a year or two, she will default on these loans and we will pick up the tab in higher fees and taxes.


14 posted on 12/20/2010 9:12:24 AM PST by BuffaloJack (The Recession is officially over. We are now into Obama's Depression.)
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To: SeekAndFind

How many underwater basket weavers from UC Berkley does society need?


15 posted on 12/20/2010 9:17:22 AM PST by epithermal
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To: BuffaloJack

RE: She currently earns $13/hr. How will she ever pay this off?

Won’t she ever be promoted from her job or move to another one once she gains experience and eventually earn much more than that ?

After all, Everyone needs to start somewhere... Didn’t most of us start from the bottom once in our lives?

Just asking...


16 posted on 12/20/2010 9:20:24 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

I have gone to college (although I am not enrolled this semester due to my current work load), and I intend to get a degree because I want the KNOWLEDGE - not the paper.

I realized exactly how the market was using college degrees when Miller Brewing started requiring their entry-level floor sweepers to have at least two years of college! At that point I realized it was nothing more than a parsing tool!

So, if you are getting a degree to get a better paying, more prestigious job - you are really wasting your money! But, like someone else stated - if you are interested in gaining the knowledge then the sheep skin is just a bonus!


17 posted on 12/20/2010 9:21:06 AM PST by ExTxMarine ("Convictions are more dangerous to truth than lies." ~ F. Nietzsche)
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To: SeekAndFind

Greenwood University
https://www.greenwooduniversity.org/greenwood/tuition.php

American College of Metaphysical Theology
http://wwwAmerican College of Metaphysical Theology

LOL!


18 posted on 12/20/2010 9:21:31 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet ("You don't have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body." CS Lewis)
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To: Oberon

But if it’s the education you’re really looking for and you don’t care about the paper, you can generally get that at the public library.

Brilliant. Great point. That was basically saying (your first part of the post) that getting a college degree is more than getting a job. It really expands your mind (and not just the liberal junk) but maths and sciences. I agree that you can get that information at the library especially if you are a go getter.


19 posted on 12/20/2010 9:23:27 AM PST by napscoordinator
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To: marron

The other problem is that there is no desire to become an educated man. Certainly not among the majority of college students.


20 posted on 12/20/2010 9:25:28 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: SeekAndFind

I teach at a university (don’t flame me!).

Are students getting worse over time? Yes. More to the point, they seem to feel entitled. They make demands that reduce their workload, primarily because college has been sold as an extension of high school where socializing is the focal point.

I watch in horror as business schools have gone crazy with “teamwork,” “diversity,” “ethics,” “trust-building,” “negotiations,” and “leadership.” Most of this is code for failed psychologists and weak marketing professors to increase their enrollments. It also gives them the opportunity to pontificate to students. That is, applied Socialism.

Our ethics professor was forced to retire after 1) he spent state funds while on leave at a foreign university to travel, and 2) sold grades for sex. Why not prosecuted?

The latest scam. “International programs.” This enables a bunch of good-ol’ boys and gals to travel in business class overseas on the state/Federal tab for two weeks-month in the name of education. It is a sight-seeing trip for students and faculty/staff.

Yes, I have complained loudly. They tried to buy me off by offering me a free trip to Dubai in business class. Needless to say, that REALLY pissed me off.

No one in the media cares.


21 posted on 12/20/2010 9:27:52 AM PST by whitedog57
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To: SeeSac

Well let’s see.

10/hr for 40 hrs a week is 400 a week and 1600 a month.

I could sock away a grand a month on that amount of pay. Assuming taxes come into play on 20k a year, I could probably up away on the order of 10k a year.


22 posted on 12/20/2010 9:27:55 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: All
Based on 2009 numbers for those over 25 (BLS stats):
23 posted on 12/20/2010 9:28:01 AM PST by BushMeister ("We are a nation that has a government - not the other way around." --Ronald Reagan)
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To: ExTxMarine

Which is why I left, and dropped out. I didn’t return until 4 years later. I was disgusted by the whole system. And frankly, probably somewhat burnt out from the whole treadmill.


24 posted on 12/20/2010 9:30:10 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: SeekAndFind
Good Colleges and Universities are not job training schools. The true benefit lies somewhere between Newman's ideal

http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/newman/newman-university.html

and your favorite uncle's advice.

You remember? He told us it is like religion, it might help and probably won't hurt you. That is, unless after immersion, you can't stay humble and begin taking yourself seriously.

25 posted on 12/20/2010 9:30:29 AM PST by kbennkc (For those who have fought for it freedom has a flavor the protected will never know .F Trp 8th Cav)
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To: BenKenobi
10/hr for 40 hrs a week is 400 a week and 1600 a month. I could sock away a grand a month on that amount of pay.

Seeing as how your math in the first sentence is incorrect, I have no reason to believe your second.

26 posted on 12/20/2010 9:31:20 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: napscoordinator
Getting an education is a good thing.

But getting a good education is a GREAT thing! I think that is the point being made. The education we are getting now does not compare with the education we received a generation ago. I was going through my some of my father's things and found his Master's thesis (half the size of his Doctoral)...but it filled a printer paper box! I started reading some of it and...wow, it blows away what is required now. The university system has become a moneymaking machine...get 'em in, get their money and get 'em out... NEXT! It didn't used to be that way. Hence, when you emerged with your sheepskin, Corporate America was lined up and fighting to hire the best and brightest and they still are, except they are coming out of Asia and elsewhere.
27 posted on 12/20/2010 9:34:28 AM PST by John.Galt2012 (I'll take Liberty and you can keep the "Change"!)
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To: wolfman23601

So far I’ve seen zero benefit from my degree. Hasn’t gotten me a single job I wouldn’t have gotten otherwise.

I’ve had to spend considerable time actually working on my weak areas AFTER my degree in order to finish the contracts that I did get, so not only was it unproductive, it was counterproductive in that it didn’t give me the skills I needed in order to be competitive in the workforce.

As for being informative, my classes were for the most part garbage. But I stuck through and I have my degree. Now I’ll probably have to go back once more to get the credentials that employers seem to expect these days. Sad. 17 years of education apparently isn’t enough.


28 posted on 12/20/2010 9:34:33 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: SeekAndFind

The whole college scam has to come apart soon.

I’ve been around ultra high end college/grad school my whole adult life. 95% of it is BS.

And for the 5% real achievers, they could go to State U in a quonset hut, and they’d still rule the world.

When I was a senior, most of us had to raise money to travel to see a key manuscript or art work. Now, the Library at Alexandria and every other damn thing is on my iPad.

Something’s gotta give.


29 posted on 12/20/2010 9:37:23 AM PST by Jim Noble (It's the tyranny, stupid!)
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To: SeeSac

40 * 10 = 400

400 * 4 = 1600 a month before taxes.

It’s not me. You need to get your calculator out, son.


30 posted on 12/20/2010 9:37:26 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: SeekAndFind

The good news as that there will be no shortage of college grads trained for womynz activism or race pimping or professional dope testing careers.


31 posted on 12/20/2010 9:39:25 AM PST by Soothesayer (smallpox is not a person)
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To: napscoordinator

“So what. Getting an education is a good thing. Please don’t tell me that FREEPERS are anti- college education now all of a sudden.”

Training and education are critical but the current higher education model is broken. We can no longer afford the current approach, a cottage industry with high costs and low efficiency. A large part of higher education can be remade with commoditization of the product, standardization of evaluation, and unbundling of services. This approach will not work for clinical and lab intensive areas but most higher education do not involve these aspects. Even the first two years of medical school could fit within this model. The goal should be to drive down costs for a large part of higher education to perhaps $50 per credit hour.

Beyond remaking higher education, students are getting poor advice about college in middle and high school. I am combatting this misinformation with my daughters. Basically, they are being told that anyone who does not go to college is a loser. I have told them that their teachers and counselors live in a sheltered environment in which each degree confers additional compensation (input oriented compensation). I have told them that many students are now leaving school with very large debts and poor job prospects. I have told them that many students move back with their parents after finishing college. I have also told them that foreign competition and government imposed employment costs are reducing demand for skilled labor here and reducing compensation. I have told them that they should be prepared to start their own business.

The emphasis should be on careers not higher education. Students should focus on identifying careers with reasonable employment prospects along with the training and education necessary to gain entry into these careers. They should be given a realistic assessment about the changing dynamics of employment and careers not cheerleading about higher education. Pursuing higher education without career aspirations is a losing game.


32 posted on 12/20/2010 9:39:47 AM PST by businessprofessor
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To: napscoordinator

The only people who “get an education” in college are the people who actually learn something while they attend.

Most just get dumber and dumber.


33 posted on 12/20/2010 9:41:36 AM PST by Soothesayer (smallpox is not a person)
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To: kbennkc

RE: He told us it is like religion, it might help and probably won’t hurt you.


Unless of course you have to go into humongous debt to get the so called benefit, by which I say — CAUTION!


34 posted on 12/20/2010 9:49:33 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: BenKenobi

You can live on 600 bucks a month? That is some frugal living.


35 posted on 12/20/2010 9:51:42 AM PST by HerrBlucher (Defund, repeal, investigate, impeach, convict, jail, celebrate.)
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To: BushMeister

RE: Professional Degree at $1,529/week.

How much of that per week do you have to deduct to pay off your college loans on average ?


36 posted on 12/20/2010 9:55:15 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: BenKenobi

Then, according to you:

4 weeks per month

12 months per year

48 weeks per year? Hate to tell you, but there are 52 weeks in a year.


37 posted on 12/20/2010 10:01:38 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: BuffaloJack; napscoordinator; SeekAndFind; whitedog57; Soothesayer; businessprofessor
Don't shoot me in the face for this, because I am just thinking out loud here... I get all the self-improvement stuff and that's great. When I retire, I will probably go back to college to study art or music or history for the sheer joy of it, however, I would not expect to get a grant or school loans from the Govt or a Bank to finance it. I mean, obviously, a 70+ year old man is not going to pay back $100k in loans... so the taxpayer or shareholders will eventually pick up the tab for my “self-improvement”. So how about this, no grants or loans for for liberal arts. Only for hard science, medical, engineering, MBA, etc. The exception, of course, would be in schools like Juilliard, that have very strict entry policies with limited enrollement and produce only the best artists. Food for thought.
38 posted on 12/20/2010 10:04:08 AM PST by John.Galt2012 (I'll take Liberty and you can keep the "Change"!)
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To: SeekAndFind

An American college degree is equal to what a High School diploma was 50 years ago.


39 posted on 12/20/2010 10:05:27 AM PST by Leftism is Mentally Deranged (Liberalism is against human nature. Practicing liberalism is detrimental to your mental stability.)
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To: SeekAndFind
RE: Professional Degree at $1,529/week. How much of that per week do you have to deduct to pay off your college loans on average ?

That's the starting salary in my field. One can easily pay off the loans in five years then soon be in the six figure income.

40 posted on 12/20/2010 10:09:37 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: napscoordinator
College is no longer a safe place to attend, and certainly the WRONG place to attempt to gain an education. A college degree in 2010 is nothing more than a certificate that testifies:
  1. I'm a chump willing to spend tens of thousands on mere promises.

  2. My mind is a chaos-ridden muck due to the immoral chaos and chaotic political indoctrination I received in college.

  3. I know less than I did when I graduated high school, but I am more adept at lying about what I know.

  4. I have a sexually transmitted disease.

  5. I'm in debt way over my head with tens of thousands in loans that can't be discharged in bankruptcy.

  6. I have almost no common sense, but I'm highly socialized.

  7. I have no ethics, besides looking bad on Facebook.

  8. I have no ability to do math without a calculator.

  9. Even with a calculator I have no idea what compound interest means.

  10. I voted for Obama.

  11. I'm for gay marriage.

  12. I don't know the difference between the Civil War and the World War I, why should I?

  13. I suffer from depression.

41 posted on 12/20/2010 10:09:45 AM PST by bvw
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To: Leftism is Mentally Deranged

My point exactly!


42 posted on 12/20/2010 10:10:15 AM PST by John.Galt2012 (I'll take Liberty and you can keep the "Change"!)
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To: Leftism is Mentally Deranged
An American college degree is equal to what a High School diploma was 50 years ago.

If you say so.

43 posted on 12/20/2010 10:10:30 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: SeeSac

Well, there are these things called taxes...

I estimated after tax to be around 20k a year.

Reality, assuming no deductions, I get 20,800 less 1,846, so around 19k.

Forgive me for the quick back of the envelope calculation which was off by 1k. That would leave me 1585 a month to spend. If I spent 600 a month (about twice what I do now), that would leave me roughly 1k a month put away, or 10k in a year, assuming 2 months disposible for Christmas.


44 posted on 12/20/2010 10:11:57 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: napscoordinator
There are a few anti-college education FReepers.

Usually when I point out that the more educated someone is, the less likely they are to be a creationist; the long knives against education come out!

It is all just liberal indoctrination, donchaknow? /s

45 posted on 12/20/2010 10:13:36 AM PST by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: SeeSac

I like to assume that I work 40 weeks in a 52 week year, this way I have money left over.


46 posted on 12/20/2010 10:13:40 AM PST by BenKenobi (Rush speaks! I hear, I obey)
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To: John.Galt2012

At least tie the amount of loans to the expected earning power of the degree.


47 posted on 12/20/2010 10:14:08 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: John.Galt2012

RE: I will probably go back to college to study art or music or history for the sheer joy of it


If it’s for the sheer joy of it, you don’t have to even enroll in College. Go to your Public Library and enjoy great lectures by borrowing Video’s and CD lectures from great college professors in say :

THE TEACHING COMPANY. See here :

http://www.teach12.com/greatcourses.aspx?ai=16281

I recently finished an entire course on the History of China from the Ching Dynasty to the Present by borrowing the CD series from my library system.

Or, if you have money to spare, you can spend a MINUMUM amount by doing Distance or Online Education.

Colleges like the University of Maryland and MIT have made their lecture videos available on the Internet.


48 posted on 12/20/2010 10:16:31 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: BenKenobi
If I spent 600 a month (about twice what I do now),

The only way you can get by on $300 a month is having someone else support you. Either the government or your parents.

49 posted on 12/20/2010 10:17:50 AM PST by SeeSac
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To: SeekAndFind
It's true. An undergrad degree once meant a bright young person who could read, write, compute, and use logic well, so these 30% or less of young people were BETTER hires and thus got better jobs. And back in the day when the females were studying but also hoping for the MRS degree, they were able to select the best and brightest mates.

Nowadays, it's likely that most undergrad degrees have left the student with a ton of liberal indoctrination, some experience with alcohol poisoning, and at least one STD. Oh, and $40,000 in student loans to pay off, and no job in sight, because nearly everyone has a college degree. He can't write or reason very well, and probably took no science at all.

Frankly, I think of it a lot like 13th through 16th grade now.

(I do feel that science or tech degrees are still valuable for jobs and future, though.)

50 posted on 12/20/2010 10:18:28 AM PST by Yaelle
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