Archive for college

Public High School Is A Failure

Over at Mises Canada, I address the question of why college tuition has increased by so much over the past few years. Turns out it might not have anything to do with the University system itself, but is the result of an increasingly failing public school system leaving its graduates with few options.

Long story short, University degrees don’t cost so much because the

salary earned from a job available to University graduates is particularly great. It’s mainly because the alternative is so much worse.

The failing of the public high school system, which accounts for 90% of high school graduates (and the vast majority of people who don’t even make it out of high school), has reduced the opportunity cost of going to University. Since high school diplomas no longer open any doors, students are “forced” to continue their education further if they want a better life. This increases the price that Universities charge in tuition, partly in response to the increased number of students willing to pursue a degree, and partly in response to a greater willingness to pay.

If someone is upset that University costs so much, they really don’t have to look any further than the failure that is the public high school system. If you want lower tuition rates, the best solution is to shore up the quality of high schools. Of course, with public school teachers now perennially striking any time someone tries to do just that, this task is easier said than done.

Read more here.

Is College Expensive?

6881499716_e8f46fa096_zWith the average college graduate, this time of year not only brings completion to their studies but also leaves them with about $30,000 of student debt to pay off. As students are wrapping up their studies and starting their professional lives with more and more debt, whether a degree is really “worth it” is coming under fire.

Over at Mises Canada, my daily article today  makes clear that while it´s “convenient to talk about the Bill Gates, Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerbergs of the world, for the average student the cost of not completing University is high.”

This isn´t because the jobs that college graduates are getting are necessarily so great, but rather because the opportunities for the average student lacking a college degree are, shall we say, less than desirable. While the average college grad starts life with five figures of debt, over his lifetime he will still expect to earn roughly $20,000 more each year compared to his non-degreed counterparts. That´s not chump change, and for the finance graduates the net present value works out to about $800,000. Put that way, a degree looks pretty cheap (but that could just be the professor in me talking).

In short, if you think spending four (or more) years in college and graduating with debt is a bad deal, consider the alternative.

Read more here.