Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Big Ed has been Screwing Us for Years

College officials 'appalled' as fratboy and his girl are caught having sex on the roof of USC building... in front of hundreds of people


What a joke.  Higher education has been screwing Americans for years. Collecting the money of hard working parents, and extorting more filthy lucre from the rest of the taxpayers via government grants and student loan schemes.
"the nation's total student loan debt now sits at about $830 billion - for the first time surpassing the nation's credit card debt."  (Atlantic - An Anti-College Backlash?)

... And for what?

So government indoctrinators can churn out hordes of self-important youngsters who don’t know how to think or write, offended that they cannot start out on top. We are subjected to stories of graduates with degrees in cultural dancing and lesbian studies suing their alma mater because they couldn’t get a job. Imagine that! Meanwhile, we must import scientists, doctors and engineers because our vaunted education system cannot produce enough.

Our university system is a joke

If you can stagger through it drunk, spending more time partying than studying, it can’t be that hard, and obviously is not a valuable educational experience. If you come out stupid on the other end, unable to think critically or write a coherent paragraph, and still get a diploma, that's not an achievement--it's an expensive waste of time.

Parents: Four years in any branch of the military will do your young adult more good than four years at an “elite” American college.

Daily Mail – Trojan Sex


LD Jackson said...

Even when I was going to college in the 1980s, it was getting bad. Most of the students at the colleges I went to were there for two purposes. First, they wanted to get away from Mom and Dad and second, they wanted to party as much as they possibly could. It was their two primary reasons for living. With the mentality of a lot of people in this country today, the mentality of parties, social networking, etc., I can imagine how bad the colleges and universities are now.

Joe said...

The sad thing is how little education they graduate with.

Tomorrow's business "leaders" are a wilted crop.

Anonymous said...

I can honestly say, I got nothing out of college.

Unknown said...

I agree with Joe on his comment, but add that some walk off campus with the idea that social justice is the way of the future, also.
Sad indeed!

Silverfiddle said...

Even worse, Mark, is when you ask them to define social justice. No logic, no critical analysis, just a regurgitation of the propaganda they've ingested.

Jersey McJones said...

Silly stereotypes aside, the American university system is still the finest in the world. Students come from around the globe to study here. Our schools of medicine are the beating heart of our medical R&D, the best in the world.

Yes, we have a serious cost problem. You get what you pay for, and we do have the best higher-ed system in the world, period.

My freshman year in college I had this great English professor (he really looked and acted like Flanders from the Simpsons!). He opened the first day of class by telling us "college is not for everyone."

The problem, it seems to me, is the one-size-fits-all curriculur system. We do not have the specialized trade schools that they have in Europe and Asia. University core curriculum is loaded with unnecessary classes. Not everyone needs to learn a foreign language, or advanced mathematics, or classical literature. It depends on what your major is. Why should a math major have to learn Spanish? Why should an English major have to learn chemistry?

I think that's what we should be addressing. It always smelled like profiteering to me.


Country Thinker said...

By the time I reached thirty I realized that I should have joined the Coast Guard instead of going straight to college. No one really told me there were options.

I'll admit I was one of those partiers (although we weren't as bad as they are now). My educational goal was to see how little I could do and still pass. I only went to Chemistry three times - once to pick up the syllabus, for the midterm, and for the final. I would have done better than a "C" if I had read the syllabus closely enough to find out that there were quixxes that accounted for 20% of the grade!

Some programs are good, however. America's engineering and agricultural programs are truly top-notch, for example.

Anonymous said...

I don't even know where to start on this one!

I'm amazed that students really do seem to be getting stupider every semester. I'm not exaggerating when I say that 1/3 to 1/2 of the students at the large university where I'm teaching absolutely should not be in college. Even aside from the problem of today's university being a giant socially engineering scheme, far too many students are just plain lazy, both physically and intellectually, and expect to be coddled and carried along.

A colleague was telling me just yesterday about a group of students that came in and wanted the grade range for an A moved down from the 90% line to 85% or 86%. (It's not a difficult or complex course.)

Students complain if the instructor doesn't provide study notes for them. (Aren't you supposed to be taking notes yourself, moron?) At the end of the semester, I get research papers that aren't even on topic. (Did you not realize what we have been talking about for the past few months? Do you remember what the name of the course is?)

I keep hearing about how sophisticated today's young people are, but I'm not seeing it. There's nothing sophisticated about a kid that can't even read a simple course schedule and see when assignments (in large font and in bold letters) are due. 1/3 to 1/2 of the students don't even pick up graded work (so, they don't read my comments and continue losing points for the same things).

A typical end-of-semester conversation goes like this:

Student: I don't understand why I'm getting a D (or failing)! I turned in most of the work!

Me: Well, let's take a look at the record...Actually, you only turned in 2 of the 14 weekly assignments, and your research paper was only 3 out of the required 5 pages. And it was late. And not on the assigned topic.

Student: But I was there for most of the classes and studied really hard for tests, and I still got bad scores!

Me: (Knowing full well that the student was only there for maybe 20% of the classes) Well, let me take a look at your notes. Ineffective note-taking is often a problem.

Student: (With an "Oh, crap!" look on his/her face) Well, um, uh, never mind. I'll just study harder for the final.

Anonymous said...

For reference (not for boasting): In case anyone thinks I'm just some mean old hardcore professor that all the students hate, I always get top scores in course/instructor evaluations done by the students at the end of each semester. (They're anonymous, and administered by the university with me absent.)

I should also say that there are also excellent students who are in class, every class, on time, taking notes, asking questions. They turn in assignments on time. They read and understand simple instructions. Their work displays effort at analysis. When they struggle--and often even when they don't--they see me for extra help. In addition, they don't dress like slobs or sluts, and they don't call me "dude" or use "lol" in e-mail they send to me. (There shouldn't be anything special about any of that; it should be the default setting.) Those are the students that make it all worth it.

Unfortunately, those students are becoming more and more rare with each year. And most of them are kids from East Asia.

College shouldn't just be 4 more years of high school, with increased decadence.

Sorry for the length, but this is something I deal with every day.

Jim said...

Great post and comments. This is very disturbing. If the purpose of college isn't to prepare young adults to be a productive part of society, was is the purpose today?

Jersey McJones said...

I think Bastiat makes the most important point about all this: the American student is not performing well. Schools, particularly universities, haven't changed all that much over the years, but the kids have.

These last three generations have experienced deep and broad social change. Smaller and smaller and more disperse families are the norm. Maturity is not reached until the mid-to-late twenties. Cultural tastes have been moribund.

And the rise of anti-intellecualism has not helped at all. There was a time when William F. Buckley was the preeminant thinker of the American right. Now it's Rush Limbaugh. On the left, it was Galbraith. Now it's a few comedians.

While we can't really blame the schools for these social changes, we can argue that the schools need to change to keep up with the trends.

I think schools need to offer more concentrated programs, more disipline-specific curriculum.

We're spending far too much money on courses that we don't need so much of.

Let's face it - not everyone is civic minded, or highly literate, or artistically inclined, or into science or math. Yet most everyone has some redeeming value in the society and the marketplace.

The modern American university is profiteering from students who just want to learn what they want to learn by forcing them to learn everything. Worse still, it is this very profiteering that encourages that stupid, time and money wasting, party-culture that only diminishes our great university system.


Anonymous said...

You are right that four years in the military will do our youth far more good. I go to school online and all there is are liberal texts with corresponding speech dictating the liberal agenda. In one book I have called From Master Student to Master Employee they extol Obama! I had to keep myself from puking on the book, literally. It is so disgusting what is being taught in colleges today on campus or online. Either way if one is not open to the truth and knows the truth they will be skrewed!

Anonymous said...

>And the rise of anti-intellecualism has not helped at all.

I don't think it's anti-intellectualism per se (although there is, rightly, a backlash against the pseudo-intellectuals who show up as "experts" on CNN, foist global cooling/warming/climate change myths on people, and get tenure at big-name universities for such hokey fields as "Women's Studies"). When you consider the popularity of people like Thomas Sowell in truly conservative circles, the accusation of "anti-intellectual" falls flat. Who is cited by Tea Partiers and fiscal libertarians more than almost anybody else regarding economics and the role of government? The Founding Fathers, any one of whom had a better understanding of government than any politician in either major party today, and Frederic Bastiat, whose intellectual power exceeded 99% of today's "economists" combined.

What is actually happening to the students is the decline into a touchy-feely, everybody's-a-victim, everybody's-entitled-to-feel-good-about-himself-regardless-of-actual-performance world of rainbows and unicorns. They just plain don't want to take responsibility for their own actions and their own futures. They don't want to work hard, and they don't think they should have to sacrifice and suffer for an education. They think that it's the job of the professors and the university to carry them through, give them remedial help, and that they somehow have a right to an education, which means a right to somebody else's property. They think they're entitled to an A without actually earning an A.

Today's college students have more disposable money, more academic resources, more free time, fewer financial demands (most college students don't actually pay their own tuition), and lower academic standards than ever in American history, but, collectively, they are abject failures. Whether in elementary school, junior high, high school, or college, throwing more money at the problem has always failed. (If it worked, U.S. students would be outperforming students in almost every country.)

We need higher standards (for both admission and graduation) and fewer social-engineering schemes, but it keeps going the other direction. (Why is there always money for the LGBTBFDSOOLWTFLOL office, but not for gen ed courses?)

What most students need is a firm slap in the head. What they need to hear more than anything else is "Put the cell phone and video games and booze away, stop whining, and get to work. College is supposed to be hard. It's not a right. It's something you have to earn. Nobody owes you a freaking thing."

Finntann said...

Just a couple of points:

1. I think those at Oxford, Cambridge, UCC, Trinity, and the Grand Ecoles of France would dispute the statement that "the American University system is the finest in the world", as it churns out half-literate morons. I recently had an MIT graduate ask in an engineering design review if the blower (fan) was adequate to cool a structure in a desert environment... It's a frigging FAN, it moves air from point A to point B... it doesn't cool anything! Certainly shattered my view of MIT though!!!

2. A University is supposed to educate you and teach you how to think for yourself: Math, English, History, Science, Foreign Languages are the basis of an education. If you want to be a specialist go to a technical school. Do you really want the engineer designing the engine on the plane you are flying in to be unable to adequately comprehend and compose sentences in the English language?

3. This "deep and broad social change, delayed maturity, and moribund cultural tastes"... would you attribute that to the conservative or progressive agenda?


Silverfiddle said...

@ Bastiatarian: We need higher standards (for both admission and graduation) and fewer social-engineering schemes

Amen. More intellectual rigor is what we need

Finntann said...

Hey B... we call what you are describing "spoon-fed".

Trekkie4Ever said...

The horrid and wretched effects of liberalism and entitlement mentality at its finest.

This is completely disturbing and it sickens me that my boys will be attending college.

Anonymous said...

>This is completely disturbing and it sickens me that my boys will be attending college.

There are good schools out there, and good departments/programs at some of the schools that are kind of goofy. Give them a solid foundation at home, and keep them out of English/History/Political Science departments, and they'll be fine.

Anonymous said...

>More intellectual rigor is what we need

But that would be racist or something.

>we call what you are describing "spoon-fed".

And then they complain that the spoon is too hard.

Trekkie4Ever said...

Bastiatarian, noted.

Anonymous said...

@silverfiddle. Sorry for the off topic. But after our discussion[s] about blogging irritants. I went ahead and prayed again and just deleted my article and a few other ones. Sometimes we think we hear from God, but it is our flesh. Don't post that article unless you are really sure - I will be the first one to tell you that it might make you sorry, it did me. Just my honest self here.


Silverfiddle said...

Thank you Layla. Many things need to be said, but it's often hard to find the right way to say them.

Anonymous said...

Seriously true.

Jersey McJones said...

Layla, the last thing we need is an even larger military! Every year the military costs the equivilent of the the total accumulated debt of all college students and grads nationally. We the people can not afford that. Besides, it is pure social engineering at it's worst and hypocritical for anti-social engineering folks to even propose!

Bastiat, I know it's convenient for you to dismiss anti-intellectualism because you think that I'm putting it all on the right, but I'm not. Anti-intellectualism has entrenched intself into every demo, every group. It has become cool to be a moron. If you think that's not a problem, I can't imagine what rock you've been living under!


Anonymous said...

Jersey, are you there on campus every day seeing what's going on? It's not an anti-intellectualism issue. It's a laziness and sense of entitlement issue.

And believe me, it's not the conservative students--and yes, I can tell--that think it's cool to be a moron. And it's not the conservative students that make the outrageous demands to be coddled. If they were like that, by definition, they would be the opposite of American conservatism.

Most Rev. Gregori said...

Silver, you are absolutely right, colleges are a huge rip off and mostly dens of liberal indoctrination. I don't believe that parents should be made to pay or help pay for their children's college education. If these kids want to get drunk and get laid, let them pay for it themselves.

Pretty soon, even going into the military will become useless once they start the Pansy Brigades.

Always On Watch said...

I've seen those four years in college ruin many young people.

Were I the parent of a student in college, I'd surely not want to be paying for that student's screwing party!

Always On Watch said...

Recently, I've been tutoring a college student in Spanish. Her Spanish textbook is filled with global-warming propaganda.

My point: courses can provide credits for a particular subject area far removed from Leftism but still be filled with Leftist propaganda. It's a blitz, I tell you!

MathewK said...

I'm surprised they aren't celebrating it as some sort of act of freedom and liberation, given how screwed up some of these 'educators' are.

Anonymous said...

"Son, fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life."

Dean Wormer, Animal House