Victor Davis Hanson: How to save America’s colleges

The public is steadily losing confidence in undergraduate education, given that we hear constantly about how poorly educated are today’s graduates and how few well-paying jobs await them.

The cost of college is a national scandal. Collective student loan debt in America is about $1.2 trillion. Campus political correctness is now daily news.

How could higher education be held accountable and thereby be reformed?

  • Waffle

    Thank you VDH for telling at least part of it how it is. I’ve been saying (it feels like forever) that it’s criminal that young people today are in debt up to the ears just to get a lousy B.A. that is worth, knowledge-wise less than the free education I got in an Ontario high school (before Bill Davis trashed the system forever). When we finished 12 or 13 years (yes, I’m that old) we were job ready, university ready or ready for the limited courses in post-secondary education (primarily teaching grade school, nursing, mining or some form of trades apprenticeship). Although we joked about it, our B.A.s really meant something. They were the foundation for the Masters or PhD which also meant something.

    But all that changed when they threw the baby out with the bathwater. The baby, of course, was the blind standard of provincial testing both for students and for teachers.

    I’m certainly no genius — many of my peers are a hell of a lot smarter than I am and I struggled to earn a B.A. long after most in my peer group had theirs. But it makes me very sad to read the agrammatical, ahistorical, illiterate comments (mostly on the FB groups I comment on.) All I can think of is the story of the Tower of Babel which fell down because none of the workers could understand each other.

    Is it any wonder that such an ill-informed electorate (both sides of the border) voted for the honey-tongued shysters who are so good at swinging the wrecking ball?

    • It’s a powerful racket.

    • dance…dancetotheradio

      Thirty years ago my first year of university tuition was $750.
      Ten years ago my first year of college tuition was $1500.

  • Shebel

    Wha wi dat crazy white speak ? Diissin da bruthas legitimizes us.

  • Dana Garcia

    Majoring in useless crap like ethnic studies should cost a lot more than degrees in useful subjects. It’s crazy to be peddling junk knowledge for top dollar, particularly when the institutions are supported by taxpayers.

    Of course, colleges are rackets at this point — leftist indoctrination camps with no social value whatsoever.

    • dance…dancetotheradio

      Funny you mention that.
      My engineering diploma tuition was cheaper than the hospitality management tuition at the same school.
      Ironically, I was a hospitality manager before I went back to school.
      I never took any classes to become a manager.
      It took ten years of grunt work.
      I’ve been a dishwasher, cook, janitor, maintenance man, limo driver, porter, busboy, bartender, waiter, supervisor and finally a manager.
      You can’t learn all that stuff in college.
      And maybe my engineering tuition was subsidized because someone somewhere figures that engineering technicians are a bit more valuable to society than hospitality managers.

      • Waffle

        I was a writer-editor before I went to university.

      • Dana Garcia

        Both engineering and hospitality are useful subjects. Society needs both.

    • Norman_In_New_York

      Reformation of higher education should begin by defunding junk curricula.