Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Our Failing Universities

A university education costs an absurd amount of money these days.  Strange!  Education should have gotten cheaper, given technology.  Why has higher (sic) education gotten so expensive?

The right answer is that "education" has gotten cheaper -- much cheaper.  But, universities have gotten much more expensive.  Is there a contradiction here somewhere?   Not really.

Universities have less and less to do with education and more and more to do with social activities and political indoctrination.  New majors and fields of study have been created that typically do not require anyone with an advanced degree to park themselves in front of the classroom.  Just being an activist with far left political opinions can suffice to receive tenure at even the most "competitive" universities these days.

Most of these new majors and fields of study have no available career path for student graduates except somewhere in a government bureaucracy.  The private sector would be reluctant to even consider folks with these new majors -- and frankly for good reason.

Meanwhile, the dorms and student housing now compete with the most modern apartment living, complete with pools, fitness centers, and on and on.  This stuff costs money.

Actual education, in the traditional sense, costs virtually nothing.  Much of it can be obtained without bothering with a university.  Online courses, many of them free, are available in almost every subject..  Most of these courses are dramatically better than what is offered today in the elite universities, who show little interest in undergraduate teaching quality.  Why not?  Networking opportunities are the main reason for attending an elite university anyway.  Education is a side issue.

The Achilles Heel of the modern university is the political indoctrination program that is rife within these institutions.  Free speech is no longer tolerated at most elite schools.  Instead, the administration and faculty insist on far-left ideology as the only permitted conversation.  Anything else is effectively banned.  Sooner or later, the folks providing the funding for these universities will wake up to the fact that these institutions are run by people who despise democracy, free institutions, free speech and free markets.  So, why fund these places?

Wealthy donors and governments at all levels should take a second look at where their money is going.  It certainly isn't going for education.

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