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View Diary: Case for a Liberal Arts Education (140 comments)

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  •  I whole heartedly agree with you. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kyril, llywrch, Edmund Xu

    A good, Liberal Arts education, gives an individual the tools to research anything, to study anything.

    However I find that most people are not interested at all in academia, or knowledge for the sake of learning.

    College has simply become a stepping stone to the fantasy of a career or job. And given the number of times perfectly educated and skilled adults have to retrain, and the lack of job continuity and worker's rights--I would say that stepping stone is more of an albatross around their necks, filled with nothing but debt, frustration and regrets.

    It seems to me we have turned our colleges into bad trade schools. And turned our trade schools into for-profit-scams. The end result has been high student debt load, the artificial increase in demand for degreed students, with what appears to be a mostly poor educational outcome.

    Non-Academic people should not be forced to major in Academic disciplines for the sake of a job.

    Trade Schools should not be for profit and cost more than a 4 year degree.

    Student debt should be lowered precipitously for the sake of encouraging all eligible citizens to keep learning and participate in continuing education.

    The  aspect of the Veteran's Affairs Admin that deals with college money should be investigated thoroughly, and reworked so that veterans no longer have to fight a mountain of red tape to get to their college funds that are theirs by contract AND investment. The VA plays all sorts of silly games with vets and it's infuriating and unfair and uncalled for.

    Stricter standards of accreditation need to be installed, weeding out "institutions" that don't measure up to reasonable standards in terms of student performance after the degree has been acquired.

    Given the nature of student debt currently, I hope that there are major debtor's strikes over this.  We shouldn't be crippling this nation's college students or trade students for money. They are the backbone of our country. If we don't keep our continuing generations of workers and citizens educated in some manner, literate-capable citizens, then we will fall further to these corporate powers.

    The reason that the President suggested an Associates Degree, is that is all many people can afford, money-wise and time-wise due to their lives as blue collar workers, or even unskilled labor.  He is right. We have to make these goals achievable. We as a country have put so many general-prerequisites out of reach that people need in order to achieve nominal success, that I am sure his goal was to give people a place they can start, as opposed to simply doing this the rethug way, which is to encourage people to "bootstrap" their way for years, to finally reach a reasonable starting position.

    •  An associates degree in an applied field (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Edmund Xu, GreenMother, kyril

      should be tuition free. I strongly believe in liberal education. But we need plumbers too. I would argue that community college should be tuition free to everyone. And that people can take courses that interest them over the span of their lives. For example if our plumber wants to learn about history he/she should be able to take history courses at the local community college at no cost to him/her.

      We need to expand the community college and hire more instructors in part to help the adults who the public school for what ever reason did not educate. Math and reading programs for example. We need specialists in adult learning because teaching adults is different than teaching children.

      The community college should be about service to the whole community and replace the for profit schools. If you want to have an applied trade you should not have to go into debt to get it. Like wise learning should be encouraged as a life long pursuit.

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