@Jor @Tom in Uptown The socialist/capitalist approach is understandable, but I'd be careful about going down that road. The government has lots of programs to help out businesses, and that's not considered socialist. Plus, much of the demand for four-year degrees comes from business, and many students have the belief (and corporate recruiters in some areas reinforce it) that an expensive, well-known private college opens more doors than a public one. The lack of a capitalist bankruptcy alternative is also a factor here. That said, I think we need to acknowledge effective government aid while shutting down programs that don't work. It's a fuzzy area.
@Kari Indeed. I need to find an article I reposted a while back about that. The main idea: Many corporate recruiters love state universities and set up a feeder system with their favorites to recruit engineers, middle managers and other mid-level types. The Ivies, they say, produce great thinkers, but they usually stay for a year or two before wandering off to grad school. That instability makes Ivy grads less attractive in some areas.
@Jor True. See my last post.
@Tom in Uptown You have a point. Oddly, community colleges carry an unfortunate (and undeserved) stigma in some areas, though it didn't seem to when I was growing up in Calif. in the early 1980s. And more austerity might be good. That said, some reports/stats indicate that you really can't save up and work for college the way you used to. The jobs aren't there, tuition is higher, and savings don't go as far. And that's just for one student. Families with multiple kids can't do all that.
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