My final paper is about Community College and I would like to focus on that for my blog post. This is a response to the article linked above. Community colleges exist as a tool to train and educate individuals who may not need a 4 year education to begin a career. They are more affordable, take less time, and many have programs to grant certificates needed for specific careers. In other words, they are extremely accessible, and they are extremely fruitful. But, they rely heavily on public funding. The article mostly focuses on the comparison between community colleges and for-profit colleges. Basically, community colleges had their budgets cut and were not able to meet demand, so they saw a decrease in enrollment, while for-profit online programs grow.
People are losing their jobs, and a tool to retrain and begin a new career are being set back. This is the perfect opportunity to increase state funding in job training programs, and community colleges are one of the greatest tools that we have established to successfully train people.
The article takes this to a further point in something that I think about regularly during this course.
“Markets only work well when there is a shared understanding of product quality among buyers and sellers. But in education, quality is amorphous and multidimensional.”
Over a few of the conversations I’ve had in breakout rooms, we talk about how education will change, but also how this will affect the quality of education. This article specifically talks about earnings, employment, and debt. I think these are pretty appropriate measures, and it would be extremely helpful for individuals to be aware of these before signing a contract to pay a tuition for something they may never get the return on. We talk about education as something that is always valuable, not to mention the experience of college itself, but obviously the return on the cost is not always worth it. It seems inefficient to just summarize everything the article says, but the main takeaway is the community colleges are worth it. The return on investment is extremely reliable and fair, and again they are a tool state governments should be investing in, especially in a recession, instead of cutting resources.