Some wise advice about college
This WSJ article may be more than a year old, but it contains valuable advice about college. For example:
Consider this: Opting for the lowest price, or working excessive hours to avoid debt, increases the odds that a student will drop out. Students who go to a lesser college when they’ve qualified for a highly selective one are 20% less likely to graduate, our research shows. Is it really worth the risk?
That’s a rather interesting statistic. I bet a lot of my readers may have assumed the opposite, that the student would be more likely to drop out by going to the selective college where he may be overwhelmed by the more difficult material.
But I have two possible explanations for the actual observed phenomenon:
(1) Going to a lesser college may expose the student to a bunch of losers, and the student picks up their loser attitudes towards school.
(2) Parents who would let their kid attend a lesser college don’t value education that much, so they don’t provide their children with the proper support and expectations for becoming college graduates.
And then I really enjoyed reading this observation:
The last major bias is putting too much weight on examples one has heard about recently, or seen close at hand. When people read news articles about students who borrowed $100,000 for undergraduate education and have been unemployed since graduating, they tend to believe that this will happen to them (and that it will last forever). Likewise, people put lots of stock in the recurring (and misleading) warnings that college is a bubble or that it isn’t worth the money in the long run.
These stories make for captivating headlines, but all the evidence is that college pays off better than ever. And, of course, virtually all the people who issue the warnings have sent their own children to college.
Conservatives who talk about a “college bubble” remind me of liberals who promote certain policies with respect to public education, but who send their own children to private school.