The state of our higher education system annoys me. It annoys me because often the people who would most benefit from college are the ones that are NOT in college. The converse of this is also true: the ones who ARE in college or university are often the ones least likely to benefit from it.
Example 1: A hardworking middle-class (maybe middle-aged) worker with a life-long passion for learning is unable to go to school because she is supporting a family and can't afford the ridiculously high tuitions that most of our universities now charge. She would LOVE the opportunity to further her education but she doesn't have the resources. Common sense dictates that she not abandon her responsibilities to her family in order to further her education. However, because of her insatiable desire to learn, she will end up either a) educating herself on her own time, or b) go deeply into debt because she sees no other option. However intelligent she may be (and often she is), she is forced to make the choice of either taking on extravagant amounts of student debt, or being shut out of jobs where a degree is required.
Example 2: A young, free spirit with no idea (yet) what he wants to do with his life, is more or less forced into going to college by his well-meaning, well-to-do parents who believe that their son "will never amount to anything" unless he has a college education. He doesn't really have an interest in learning, but doesn't feel like he has any other options. The result is that he often doesn't do well in his classes and spends his time in college on "non-academic endeavors". For him, college is just a way to delay the responsibilities of adulthood while living on his parents' dime. He's been subtly indoctrinated with this ideology his whole life by his unwitting parents and by our culture.
Huh? What's that? What's the answer to this conundrum?
I dunno...I'm still working on that part...
The random thoughts of a passionate moderate who is incurably addicted to music, practical philosophy, and learning new things.