From time to time we receive anonymous letters from people who have something to say, but don’t want to be outed/exposed, here is a recent one:
I have heard most if not all of the arguments & viewpoints against the way for-profit schools market. I have heard all of the name calling, the comparison to the subprime lenders, the predatory marketing tactics, the hundreds of millions being spent by schools and the deceptive/ misleading advertising practices. For an uneducated or ill-informed individual, it’s easy to see how some jump on the bandwagon. However, let us not forget that whenever one listens to only one side of a story or argument it’s easy to fall into alignment. What bothers me, in addition to the one-sided arguments being made, is the complete lack of thinking things thru. The fact that some elected officials are too quick to make changes, many simply for change sake, is just news-bite governing. When did we all of a sudden decide to switch to a fast break style government? When did ready fire aim become the best practices promoted by some leaders within the department of education. Is it really reform if the changes that result backfire on the ultimate goal? Why don’t people think things thru anymore? What about the ripple effects caused by these aggressive proposed changes? I thought one of our top goals as a country was to increase the percentage of Americans with a college degree? Shouldn’t government work to improve the advancement opportunities for those who need it most. I am all for closing any firm or firms who are systematically practicing & promoting non-compliance, fraud or deception, I am not however in favor or thoughtless knee jerk decision making that effects an entire industry.
I was a Political Science Major and a logic minor in college. Talk about an internal conflict within one’s own education… It’s sad that in today’s screwed up political climate it seems like an either/ or equation, do I want to be in politics or do I want to be a logical person!
How is it that schools spending large sums of money on advertising are determined to be doing something bad? What about the reinforcement value of the “go to college” messaging, the education awareness they generate, and the outreach into areas not targeted by tradition schools?
Why is it bad for lead providers to provide prospective education seekers with non-incentivized compliance approved forms for individuals to request information directly from schools who want to talk to them about potentially becoming a student. Isn’t that a value?
It’s Interesting that you never hear about the positive aspects resulting from the unprecedented awareness created from the influx of educational advertising over the last decade.
Here is one:
Recent Pew research center study:
The most detailed study to date of the 18- to 29-year-old Millennial generation finds this group probably will be the most educated in American history. But the 50 million Millennials also have the highest share who are unemployed or out of the workforce in almost four decades, according to the study, released today by the Pew Research Center.
Pew’s analysis includes its own data, such as a new survey of 2,020 adults, including 830 Millennials, conducted by landline and cell phone last month. It also analyzes data from other sources, such as the Census, which shows 40% of those 18-24 were in college in 2008, a higher percentage than any previous generation at those ages.
So if you are a misguided politician you read the above excerpt and say:
See those for profit schools are suckering more people to go to college than ever before, and if those people weren’t suckered into getting a degree they would not have any student loans… Also, what good is a degree, look at their graduates, they are unemployed…
I would argue that obtaining a college degree is not ever a bad idea! I would also argue that they are unemployed because of the current economic debacle we are currently facing.
A logical person however may read the same excerpt and say:
Wow, I am glad to see the increase in college educated people within the most recent generation, hey maybe it’s because of all the increased awareness resulting from the influx of advertising to those people over the last decade or maybe from the outreach from the proactive colleges. It’s unfortunate to see so many of them unemployed, but then again over 10% of our country is unemployed, the economy sucks.