For all that money, we achieve outcomes: 42 percent of students who enter a four-year institution fail to leave that school with a degree within six years, and studies find that many students' improvement in thinking skills is insignificant or nonexistent. Graduates typically leave with mountains of debt and struggle to find work.In a trend that would have been unthinkable ten years ago, Americans are expressing skepticism about higher education—not just with their voices, but also with their pocketbooks and their time. At all but the most elite schools, application numbers are down, and students are increasingly choosing less-expensive schools, starting at community colleges, or otherwise seeking to control costs.Colleges are feeling the pinch. Specially college tuition has become a major issue for the middle class family. It was too high for them, but the education system of college is the same like it was 50 years ago.
Classes like wood shop, auto mechanics, home economics, typing, etc. are more and more frequently not being offered at high schools any more. These classes offer certain skill sets that would help people obtain a good job right out of high school, and also might offer some insight to what kind of field you want to work in which in the long run will help you obtain a “good” job. Even if you go to college and find a career choice that excites you, you can still end up below the poverty line because the American economy is flawed. Lars Eighner’s essay “On Dumpster Diving” details a core aspect of the three-year period when the author and his dog were homeless.
The bachelor’s degree Only slightly more than 50 percent of American students who enter college leave with a bachelor’s degree. College is the place where students make the biggest decision of their life that may change their entire professional future. Some students cannot finish their bachelor’s degree due to many different reasons. Those are they are academic unprepared, family issues and financial problems. Students are sometimes academically unprepared to finish their college education.
In addition, the students have to adjust to new and more precise writing styles and expectations required of college professors as opposed to high school teachers. The student’s inability to manage their time with their academics is the leading second cause of academic stress. If a student has never practiced effective time management, then it would be very difficult to apply them effectively during their freshman year of college. While freshman students have the most stress due to several new adjustments, there is stress on upperclassmen as well. College life has become a lot more competitive.
When the Reagan administration published A Nation at Risk in 1983, they were concerned about the effectiveness of the American education system in addressing these new societal changes relating to the rise of information technology. At that time, according to the study, the education system in America was in a state of mediocrity with global competitors outperforming American students in many subject areas. In addition, there were 23 million adults who were functionally illiterate and the illiteracy rate was very high (up to 40%) for minority youth. Finally, the average achievement rate of high school students taking the SAT was declining from 1963 to 1980. The study acknowledged if the United States wanted to maintain dominance in the information age; the nation needed to reform the education system to meet this challenge.
Since then recent college graduates have had difficulty finding jobs. Many college graduates are confused as to why they were unable to find jobs after spending so many years studying and preparing themselves for life after graduation. If the college curriculum focuses on preparing students for the work force, the students will have a better chance of getting a good job in their chosen fields. The majority of jobs today that are considered “good jobs” require a college degree. According to the Washington Post a “good job” is described as “one that pays a minimum of $37,000 yearly, provides health insurance and has some retirement benefits (Plumer, 2012).
Grades of a “C” or less went from twenty five percent in 1969 to nine percent in 1993. These numbers reveal a pattern that continues today which should concern teachers and students alike. Many students may not see the problem with grade inflation, but I disagree. If everyone in the class is receiving the same grade, how will students know how they are performing individually? Why should students feel they need to put forth the extra effort, if they can give a mediocre performance and succeed anyway?
Americans are brought to believe that if they work hard, they will succeed in life. This is not the case though, due to the lack of education to earn a living wage for most families already in poverty. In 2005, thirty-seven million Americans, representing twelve-point-seven percent of the population, lived below the poverty line (Beegle 15). High school dropouts are more likely to be unemployed and earn a lower wages. Studies show that in 1993, the risk of poor children were two times higher for grade repetition and high school drop outs, one-point-three times more for parents reporting emotional or behavioral problems, and six-point-eight times for reported cases of child neglect (Beegle 17).
If a student is not able to function in their daily or academic life, they will not be motivated to do their work or even go to class at all. If they are receiving some kind of financial aid from the university, then the college is wasting money. The student is being paid to not go to class. On top of that, if the student drops out of a course or leaves the college, it hurts the university’s reputation because it has so many dropouts. In the long run, a struggling or confused student does not benefit anyone.
On average, only 58% of students in America's 50 largest cities make it to graduation. The decision to drop out is a dangerous one for the student. Dropouts are much more likely than their peers who graduate to be unemployed, living in poverty, receiving public assistance, in prison, on death row, unhealthy, divorced, and single parents with children who drop out from high school themselves. The dropout problem is likely to increase substantially through 2020 unless significant improvements are made. So why students drop out of school and what can be done to decrease the number of dropouts?