07 April 2008

Would You Pay $1 Million to be Lobotomised?

College education is becoming increasingly expensive. Current figures are well into the hundreds of thousands of dollars, and soon may pass the $1 million mark. We are continually being told that a college education is worth at least $1 million over a student's lifetime. But given the large number of school dropouts who are billionaires and mega-millionaires, many people are wondering if the price of an academic lobotomy--university education--is actually worth the cost.
But what if the college premium doesn’t exist, or is greatly exaggerated? If a college degree isn’t worth as much as the conventional wisdom assumes, is it possible that the money the country keeps pouring into the current financial aid system isn’t wise? That taxpayer acceptance of the ever-rising price of higher education, patience that already wearing thin, would evaporate? And that that combination of factors would finally force college leaders and policy makers and others to get serious about confronting the problems?

That is the roughly scenario that Miller laid out last week in a scathing letter to Gaston Caperton, president of the College Board, in which he accuses the board, through its choice of financial assumptions and presentation of data, of misleading the public in its “Education Pays” report, which aims to lay out the benefits to individuals and to society of a strong higher education system and of equitable access to it for Americans from all backgrounds.

A different analysis, “using assumptions more in line with current realities, might reach the shocking conclusions that American higher education today has gotten too expensive for what it produces; that it has become too costly for the typical student ... that education (a college degree) does not pay!” Miller wrote. ___InsideHighered
The best route to riches in an opportunity society such as the US is through business. Ambitious high school dropouts with an idea and persistence can become millionaires, and often do. Currently there is a desperate shortage for craftsmen and skilled labourers who earn upwards of $100 K or more a year with overtime. Much of the sluggishness of economies in developed countries such as the US is due to a lack of skills to push forward the many backlogged projects in energy and industry. This backlog will only get worse.

There is no need to pay big money for an academic lobotomy. There are many other routes to material wealth and comfort that do not involve opening your skull for (often) feeble-minded professors of twisted ideological bent. If you must have a college education, you can obtain all the knowledge via the internet and the libraries in your area. If you must have a degree, many reputable universities offer distance learning degree programs.

It is best if you understand what you are paying for, what you can expect to get back, and what you may be sacrificing--before you step into the lobotomist's theatre.

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Blogger Hell_Is_Like_Newark said...

So where does all that tuition money go? I got an idea where way back, when I was still on college (early 90's). I was put in charge of fixing a computer that contained a spreadsheet listing what various professors were paid (all were working on a special govt funded program). Annual salaries varied from $180k to $245k. Mind you.. this is in the early 90's! That was a lot of cash for people who sometimes taught as little as one class per week.

Monday, 07 April, 2008  
Blogger The Pwnee said...

It depends on the university and the department. Most professors make well under the 80k mark. English professors fare worse, and economics professors do much better, due to the high demand for business degrees. Teaching loads vary but are not the real core of what a professor does. I can speak only for the sciences, but if you think research is anything other than soul rending work you're mistaken.

Monday, 07 April, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

Interesting. Many professors in engineering, CS, medicine, and the sciences take big pay cuts to do academics.

Then you have the postmodernist incompetents who should feel lucky to get lifetime tenure and a license to warp young minds to suit their own prejudices.

Tuesday, 08 April, 2008  

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“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

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