The president of the University of Wisconsin has warned the schools in his system that times are going to be tough, financially, and advised them to concentrate on “signature programs worthy of preservation” (https://www.startribune.com/cross-orders-uw-to-prioritize-courses-prepare-for-layoffs/570267982/). This, of course, is all due to the coronavirus panic and the shutdown of our nation’s economy.
Hmm… Now what programs might those be? Women’s Studies? Transgender Poetry? Critical Race Theory? Superhero Studies? Advanced Crying?
Well, sez the prez, brace for layoffs and keep “basics” like math and English that undergraduates need, to get a diploma… “if we want the system to survive.”
They’re miffed at Wisconsin’s Republican legislature for not letting them raise the tuition, two years in a row–a measly $10,555 in-state, and $36,805 out-of-state–and they don’t know how they’re gonna keep the party going: gee, it costs money to offer all that Woke Stuff–Beyonce Studies, Lesbian Philately, blah-blah-blah. To say nothing of the remediation for all the stuff the kiddies should’ve learned in high school, but didn’t.
For the most part, America’s colleges and universities deserve to go broke, and the process should be hastened. The whole idea that “everybody has to go to college!” was never anything but nonsense. The whole thing needs to be pruned way back. We could probably erase 90% of our whole university system and suffer no ill effects from it.
Betcha anything we can do without it!
6 comments on “‘Higher Education’ (LOL) Feeling the Pinch”
When I was teaching in a very low economic area I used to tell the kids, don’t worry about “college”. Think about what you want to do and what you NEED to get there. I say it all the time that I wish I had known what I really wanted to do with my life before going and getting all my degrees. I could have saved a lot of time and money. And now, I don’t even work. I do believe that people need continued learning and training but it doesn’t have to be in a four year college or university.
For all of the hype, bluster and questionable information involved with this pandemic, it has exposed some real fluff for what it is. Waste your time on Beyoncé studies and see how much that helps you in the real world. I e personally worked with someone in a Master’s program that was so freaked out about a Denial of Service attack that he unplugged the entire organization from the Internet, effectively assuring a denial of service. It was obvious that he knew a lot of words and phrases, but didn’t know the practical application of what he had learned. Sadly, the professors teaching him probably didn’t know much more; many simply memorize information without having any real understanding of the material.
Colleges are of another era. A time when a college degree was expected to signify true literacy, the perspective of being well read, plus specific knowledge essential to one’s major area of study. The world is changing much more rapidly in our day and a “classical” education is not necessarily the best thing going forward.
The adoption of some of the more frivolous courses of study, IMO, relies on the past value of a classical education model, apparently thinking that inclusion of a subject into college curricula somehow lends weight to the value of the subject. Nothing could be further from the truth and someone with a lot of education in some of these subject areas could find themselves qualified only to teach those same subjects to the next crop of students.
I can’t imagine what value being able to rattle off the accomplishments of some celebrity would have in the workplace. Speaking for my own generation, knowing what Madonna was up to in 1983 rarely has much bearing upon my workday. If this keeps on, there will be a whole bunch of students deeply in debt for a education which doesn’t qualify them for employment adequate to repay those debts. Oh, wait a minute, that’s already happening.
You mean, cramming for a test by memorizing the information, and then forgetting it the next day is not how the game is played? Are you saying those students with all the A’s really aren’t learning? 🙂
This just in: No need to worry about the higher education system. Bill Gates has just teamed up with Gov. Cuomo to reinvent education. This should prove to be so great it will probably go global.
Outside the narrow confines of his field, Bill Gates is a babbling idiot.