DON’T GO TO COLLEGE! March 15, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, It's all about the $$$, scandals, secularism, Society, Tradition.
Interesting video by Stefan Molyneux below, and one that is most timely for my family. To make matters bearable for my wife, we “paired up” my oldest and 2nd oldest daughters, born 18 months apart, into the same school grade when the started kindergarten many years ago. This made eminent sense, as the twins came after these two and would constitute their own grade. So my oldest daughter started homeschooling at age 6 while the next was 4.
But what that also means is that I will have two girls graduating high school the same year, 2018. For a long time, however, we have had the strong sense that our oldest daughter was not destined for college, while her younger sister was much more likely to go. And that’s very much turned out to be the case. Our oldest might go to community college or get a 2 year degree in some kind of artistic field. Her sister, however, is taking the standardized tests and doing really very well. She might wind up with a better score than any I was able to attain by the time she’s done.
Right now, however, she’s leaning towards a natural science degree, in a “hard science” like biology. While she’ll probably attend UD – which is her school of choice – I kind of view a BS in natural science as sort of the floor for a major that makes getting a degree worthwhile, economically. Especially when you factor in the fact that UD is a private university. I’m also leery of biology as a degree, even at a fairly Catholic uni like UD, because the field of biology is eaten up with the cult of evolution.
The commentary from Stefan Molyneux plays into this thesis. It makes me want to encourage her exploring engineering a bit more, perhaps biomedical engineering as a cousin she is close to is majoring in right now at UT-San Antonio. But J really wants to stay close to home. We’ll see.
I have been pretty upfront with my kids, however. If they want to get a degree, it needs to be in some field where there is a reasonable payout for the hideous expense involved, be it finance, compsci, engineering, hard science, management information systems, or whatever. Otherwise, they better get pretty close to a full ride scholarship, or it ain’t happening. I am also hopeful that online degrees of low cost but sufficient gravitas really begin to emerge as my kids enter college. That might be another alternative.
It is a brilliant point to bring up the fact that making college “free” would have the direct effect of radically reducing the worth of having a college degree – about akin to a high school diploma today. Then an entire new level of credentialization would have to emerge to replace what college is today – be it post-graduate degrees or something beyond PhD.
Interestingly, that is why my alma mater – The University of Texas – has fought for years to keep its enrollment below 50,000, with about 30-35,000 of those being undergrads (of whom maybe 60-70% actually graduate with a degree). They have done this for several reasons – limitations of space as an urban university, funding limitations, etc., but also because they want the degrees to have a certain value. At present, UT graduates about 7-8000 undergraduates a year. There are typically about 300-400,000 living graduates at any one time. If UT did what A&M is doing, which is expanding to 70,000-80,000 or beyond, they would produce twice as many graduates and potentially reduce the value of their degrees.
It is exceedingly odd for me to say this, though it is a sense I have had developing over the past several years (college not being worth the expense in many degree fields, in addition to being a source of very dangerous indoctrination). My parents were the first people in both of their families to ever get college degrees, though my mom did not get hers until she was nearly 40. My brother and sister and I all went to college as a matter of course. My wife’s experience is similar. And yet she only used her degree professionally for a few years before graduating to full time motherhood (which may well be the case for most of my daughters). Here I feel like I am turning my back on something that has been taken for granted as a critical part of the ascent to the upper middle class in this country for generations.
Yet, there are fewer and fewer reasons to obtain degrees of exponentially increasing cost. There are sources of learning available anywhere in the world today that were unimaginable when I was of college age. The college experience is increasingly dangerous for souls. I just had the lamentable tale related to me a few days ago of a father whose daughter was totally lost in the sexular pagan leftist zeitgeist, a zeitgeist she absorbed while a student at Oklahoma University, of all places. There are very few intellectually and morally “safe” colleges. I strongly recommend children either go to a college they can attend while living at home, or living with family that can be trusted implicitly.
Lots of factors. Lots of opportunities for soul-crushing mistakes. Err on the side of caution. Perhaps more specifically, err on the side of what is the safest route morally and ecclesiastically, even if that involves something of an economic penalty. Easy for me to say, however.