Comment | Should more students drop out of college?

To the editor:

Again, “college has become the default. Let’s rethink it, “said John McWorter (comment, April 7):

Dr. His assumption that many students would auction off their time until they got that “piece of paper” surprised them so they could get jobs. His cheerleading lead for the less educated United States is disappointing.

Of course college is not for everyone, not everyone has to go to college to study. Shared his college experience. I want to share mine.

I went to Brooklyn College. I specialized in media, finding that the mini-series “Roots” was a life-changing experience. I took a psychology class and fell in love with the subject, so I succeeded in that too. I was amazed at the health sciences and took a course in it, and I understood why eating healthy. I studied biology to understand how my body works, which made me an educated patient. Perhaps as important as these things are, I took history and political science and understood what it means to be an informed citizen.

Dr. with higher education. I do not understand the attitude of Macquarie. It is important for everyone to learn to think critically about health and politics and to empathize with other cultures. College may not be the best way for everyone to do that. But his devaluation of the four-year degree loses the entire point of the college. Is to become an educated adult and citizen.

Elaine Edelman
East Brunswick, NJ

To the editor:

As the executive director of a foundation that supports programs designed to strengthen early childhood education, I was disappointed to find kindergarten classrooms decorated with garlands from Ivy League colleges. I agree with John McWauter’s introduction: A college education is not necessary to prepare someone for a successful career!

Years ago, the so-called “vocational education” was valuable and accessible to high school students, but it seems to have fallen out of fashion in favor of four more years of inattentive learning. Technical education should be available to students who are plumbers, electricians, computer technicians and other business people, they are essential in our daily lives, but we do not have to read great books to have a successful career.

Deborah Bressney
New York

To the editor:

The title of John McWauter’s column covers the lead. Leon Bottstein, president of Bard College, suggested that the main takeaway should be to emphasize that children spend their last two years in high school on a track called “early college.” Assuming this means a curriculum that is richer and more intellectually demanding than usual, I am ready for it. Early college will give these students a better understanding of what a college education is and, perhaps, what it should be. The decision to proceed will be well informed.

Designing college has been in vogue for some time, especially among those who choose to measure its value through cost-benefit analysis. A college education may lead to a job, but this is not the equivalent of a trade school certificate. Those who choose college education should do so for education, mostly to explore subjects previously not available in high school. If more subjects can be given in 11th and 12th classes, it would be amazing.

Focus on revising the high school curriculum for today’s students, who by default will handle the college problem themselves.

Robert S. Cole Jr.
Washington

To the editor:

John Macquarie was right. Many students who arrive on campus do not even know what the college has to offer or why they are there, other than that it is the “next step”. Many never take advantage of the opportunities available on campus. But that does not mean that students should not have difficulty learning in college and instead have to rely on distance (or other alternative forms) of study.

Instead, pre-college education should equip students for opportunities to provide a higher quality education; College brochures and tours should focus on the means and rewards of learning to think deeply about a variety of topics; In addition, the faculty and staff on campus must work to ensure that each enrolled student is able to explore new areas and be well-equipped and graduate to handle work, civic, and personal responsibilities.

Howard Gardner
Cambridge, Mass.
The author is a professor of cognition and education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and co-author of “The Real World of Colleges”.

To the editor:

Colleges and universities have made significant contributions to the breakdown of the American education system. Most higher education institutions have become expensive and extremely political. Professors seem to be engaged in instruction rather than teaching students the skills to prepare them for professions. As a result, students and their families are often heavily indebted and overpay for credits and certificates that can be obtained with less money and less time and effort.

When I was in college and graduate school, John McQuarter’s reference to the “normal way” after high school helped me a lot as a way out of poverty. I come from an uneducated family, and college and postgraduate studies have lifted me out of poverty and given me a very rewarding life. The path I took today seems to be less rewarding.

Franklin T. Burrows
Walnut Creek, California.

To the editor:

John McQuarter is right: not everyone should go to college, but everyone should be educated and prepared to be a responsible citizen. Can you do that without going to college?

Together with Leon Bottstein, he hopes to have an appropriate basic education by the end of the tenth grade. Macquarter suggests. may be. But – there it was, it did. Robert Maynard Hutchins, then president of the University of Chicago in the 1940s, was one such commentator.

Well, maybe I was ready for college intellectually and emotionally, but certainly not physically. I took two more years of preparatory schooling before going to college, by which time I had grown about four inches, without which I would never have succeeded in becoming an All-American three times in football.

Well, that’s not a measure of life success. But in order to implement a short curriculum as a useful part of a comprehensive reorganization of our education system, there must be a more universal acceptance of the idea and a general appreciation of the goals of education. Mr. Hutchins’ idea was ahead of its time, and it did not last long; The high school at the University of Chicago has now returned to a traditional 12-grade curriculum.

Robert H. Palmer
New York

To the editor:

John McWorter, an advocate of higher education, says: “It is better to go there and do what they want to do, without four years of expensive preparation, and only diagonally related to what they are going to spend their lives on. ”

Okay, let’s see. In college, I wanted to be an actress. I finally, diagonally, taught my life writing and writing. In the meantime, I had all sorts of college experiences “diagonally only” related to preparing myself for this life. I learned to speak good French and minimal Spanish. I found Gavin and the heroic doubles. I realized that I loved botany and anthropology. My mind exploded with existentialism and dramatic paradox.

In the meantime, I drank my first beer and my first heart attack, experiencing a profound friendship and resistance to some of my childhood ideas and questioning my relationship with God.

Gee Wis, Dr. If I had the benefit of Macquarie’s wisdom, I would not have wasted my time on “liberal education.”

Janet Barrow
Chicago

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