We are told about the successful dropout stories of Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs; or even J. K. Rowling who never attended college. These people are implying that you don’t really need to graduate from college to be a billionaire.
So what is happening in college nowadays? Since academics is not a priority, students during the first two years of their college education learned very little, close to nothing. Based on the book Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses, where students’ Collegiate Learning Assessment results were analyzed, 45% of students did not learned significantly. And after completing 4 years of college, 36% learned very little.
The research also shows that students study less compared to students a decade ago, with 50% decline in study time. But the average GPA of students is 3.2, quite high for a minimized effort. It seems that the academe lowered their expectations on the modern day students.
Professors are really researchers, not teachers. They don’t get rewarded for teaching well, but rather they get promotion or pay increase from the papers they publish. In turn, they prioritize searching for new information and the teaching suffers.
We all know that college education costs a fortune. Students end up working for the first 5 years or more just to pay their debt. There are various courses offered that are extra hard to hand our money. I’m talking about studying the following:
- David Beckham studies – Staffordshire University, UK
- The Phallus – Occidental College
- Surfing Studies – Plymouth / Melbourne
- Star Trek – Georgetown University in Washington
- Golf Management – University of Birmingham / Florida Gulf Coast University
- The Science of Harry Potter – Frostberg State University
- UFOlogy – Western Nevada College
- Maple Syrup: The Real Thing – Alfred University
- Underwater Basket Weaving – University of California, San Diego
- The Twilight Saga – University of Alabama
To answer my own question, yes I believe college education is still worth it. I’m a college graduate, and there are wonderful and admirable things that I’ve learned and acquired in college. At the very least, college is a great place to meet people. I maintained good relationships, had a smoother interpersonal interaction, improved mindset, better outlook in life, and a more defined personality. These will develop regardless of what field you are majoring in.
And here’s the truth from the words of Time Magazine’s Vartan Gregorian,
..of the current Fortune 500 CEOs, some 99% have a college degree. Similarly, of the Forbes 400 richest people in America, 81% hold postsecondary degrees… the fact remains that people with college degrees still earn much more – and are more likely to have a job to begin with – than people without.
Do you think college is still a good investment nowadays?