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(Gawker)   Grad school is a debt machine for our incredibly well-educated retail workers   (gawker.com) divider line 17
    More: Obvious, professional degree, doctoral degree, student debt, percentiles, machines, workers  
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5233 clicks; posted to Main » on 25 Mar 2014 at 10:33 PM (35 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-03-25 10:49:54 PM  
4 votes:

Tr0mBoNe: My friend called his doctorate and pair of post doctoral fellowships a great experience in filling out forms for grants and submitting parts of his papers to hundreds of journals a month. He did a bit of research from time to time but it was mostly forms.

He doesn't do what he was trained for (electrical engineering, cosmology and particle physics)... he talked his way into a systems engineering job and uses his degrees to negotiate raises. Smart people will usually manage to land on their feet.


Having only earned Masters in Engineering, I have the utmost respect for people who've earned their PhD's:  In my book they've demonstrated they can successfully navigate one of the most bureaucratic and political organizations in the world -- academia
2014-03-25 07:57:40 PM  
4 votes:
I've always let my lack of degree make me feel like a failure in life.

Until I decided there was so much more to my worth than a piece of paper, and I did manage a successful career with out it. And I don't have massive student loan debt.

So, just like with being a single mom most my life, and not having the best car or being a super model, I've decided to say FARK YOU to what society says I should do and measure my life by my own day-to-day happiness.
2014-03-25 11:03:30 PM  
3 votes:
Maybe I'm a bit dense or something, but I can't understand why the cost of tuition has gotten so high -- especially when back around 1977, my local college had a mix of regular students and 'professional-students' along with a lot of people just taking a class or two for the education.

Like, one of our physicians would take classes in music because he wanted to learn how to play an instrument. Middle aged folks would be taking a few classes in humanities or the arts, just to fill in their knowledge base.

Professional students kept taking classes until they exhausted the limits of the college. Most for no other reason than they liked learning.

In 1971, I took the first year of a two year associate degree in nursing. It cost $600. In 1975 I took several classes to begin a psychology degree. That cost $900. My folks paid for the first stint -- right out of high school. I paid for the second.

I couldn't afford to do it today.
College educations, when I was a young adult, were a bit costly, but affordable. There were grants available and some student loans, but you had to dig around to find them. A lot of students put themselves through college by working.

I did. I changed to the swing shift at work to attend college in the morning. It was tight, but I could do it.

I can't find anything to justify the explosive surge in college tuition, especially when many major colleges appear to have millions in assets and actually don't need to raise their costs.

I haven't been to colleges in years, but I'd wager you'll no longer find the 'professional or casual' students there anymore. I suspect the average middle aged man, with an itch to learn about medieval architecture just to satisfy his curiosity is not willing to fork over $10,000 just to take a few classes for a year.

I'd be interested in any opinions as to why educational costs have soared, especially, since not that long ago, a college education was considered no longer just obtainable by the rich.

The way it's going now, it soon will be.
2014-03-25 06:49:57 PM  
3 votes:
The only graduate degree that has not significantly increased in cost in the past decade: a business degree. Probably because business students can do math

No, they can't. Whatever the reason is, that's not it.
But I don't think the claim is true in the first place. Don't teaching and research assistantships still exist?
2014-03-25 11:20:26 PM  
2 votes:

Rik01: I'd be interested in any opinions as to why educational costs have soared, especially, since not that long ago, a college education was considered no longer just obtainable by the rich.


The biggest factor is the loss of state funding to universities that correlates strongly with the current 50-60 year olds getting out of university age and a desire for lower taxes.

Schools have to make up the difference and the current goldmine is student living. Build super expensive dorms with all kinds of amenities to bring in students and charge them out the ass for it. Double bonus for courting foreign kids who can't exactly swap housing on a moment's notice.
2014-03-25 11:03:12 PM  
2 votes:
Much like how we should consider universal health care, perhaps we should consider universal education.
2014-03-25 10:41:37 PM  
2 votes:
The only graduate degree that has not significantly increased in cost in the past decade: a business degree. Probably because business students can do math

That's completely not true and I have a double major in Finance and Econ. I can do math, but the number of people in upper level classes who suck at basic algebra and statistics, much less calculus of resource optimization for limited production curves (we spent a long time on that in my governmental economics class, hard as all hell but unbelievably fun and I learned a LOT).
2014-03-26 03:05:50 PM  
1 votes:

Hiro-ACiD: In Canada The Boomers enjoyed the benefits of their parents generation's public funding of higher education, but when it came time for them to pony up for their children's generation they cut their own taxes and ran with the money like the selfish little bastards they are.


Same thing happened here in the U.S. of A. When I started working on my Associates/Bachelors back in 1992 the lower AS units were only $9 ($27 for a 3 unit class) at the community college, and the upper BA units were less than $1k for 12 unit+ semester at the state school.
By the time I finished in 2012 the CC was $47 a unit, and the state school was over $3k a semester, with most of that increase coming within the last 5 years. It's over $4k now, probably will cross $5k by fall 2014. Still cheap compared to some places, but a huge increase in a very short time.

The cause? Huge cuts in funding from the state and the feds. Just as in Canadia, the boomers (I'm a tail end boomer/lead Xer, '62) sucked up all that nearly free education (in this state community college was actually FREE until 1978, until Proposition 13 was enacted) and told their progeny "tough sh*t, kid" when they came to the table and found nothing but crumbs.
2014-03-26 12:28:21 PM  
1 votes:

Rik01: Maybe I'm a bit dense or something, but I can't understand why the cost of tuition has gotten so high -- especially when back around 1977, my local college had a mix of regular students and 'professional-students' along with a lot of people just taking a class or two for the education.


The folks I know in academics tend to point toward burgeoning admin costs.  More "executive assistant dean"-type crap positions bloating the payroll.  It sure isn't academic salaries; most schools are going to the adjunct professor model, which is basically migrant labor.  $1500 per class, no benefits.  If you have a PhD in the subject.

Meanwhile, the big university capital fundraising project has failed spectacularly, and didn't even cover its own costs... so the obvious solution...is to hire more fundraisers.  And more admin types to watch over them.

/last bit is a true example, but I'm not outing the poor guy who told it to me...he's gotta work there, and doesn't have tenure yet.
2014-03-26 12:17:52 AM  
1 votes:
Dear people between 55 and 70.

When you've made your mark, your pension and your 401k hasn't been stolen, RETIRE AND GET THE F*CK OUT OF THE WAY.   Don't double dip.  Don't "consult" the new jack kids coming up into poverty, step off, go home and relax and enjoy.

/ yeah I'm in that age group but what I do doesn't have a retirement plan or even steady work.
// would LOVE to retire.
2014-03-25 11:19:47 PM  
1 votes:
I started working on my PhD in Electrical Engineering. In quickly realized that it wasn't valued at my company as it was considered the equivalent of 2 years of work experience. Why would I waste 4 years getting it?
2014-03-25 11:10:54 PM  
1 votes:
We need a system in place like a trade school. Employers could post what sorts of classes they need, like computer skills or unjamming copy machines, and people could take one or two year courses in them.
College is great if you have the time and money, but it really doesn't qualify you for anything.
2014-03-25 10:59:06 PM  
1 votes:
Work for a company that will pay for you to get an education.
2014-03-25 10:55:09 PM  
1 votes:
Health care.
2014-03-25 10:44:18 PM  
1 votes:

raerae1980: I have an MA in anthropology/archaeology but working in retail. Lol, I guess this article was about me...
I was under the impression that you needed an advanced degree to do anything with anthropology. Turns out the field is very saturated in both academia and in the private sector. Wish my professors would have been more forthcoming about job prospects instead of sugarcoating it.


There are a bunch of  reserves up here that are looking for peeps like you. They are working on several burial sites and are constantly advertising their positions.
2014-03-25 09:24:03 PM  
1 votes:

rumpelstiltskin: The only graduate degree that has not significantly increased in cost in the past decade: a business degree. Probably because business students can do math


I don't think the author has met a business student. Sack of hammers.
2014-03-25 09:16:24 PM  
1 votes:
I have an MA in anthropology/archaeology but working in retail. Lol, I guess this article was about me...
I was under the impression that you needed an advanced degree to do anything with anthropology. Turns out the field is very saturated in both academia and in the private sector. Wish my professors would have been more forthcoming about job prospects instead of sugarcoating it.
 
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