Monday, December 01, 2008

The Cost of Higher Education

As the Instapundit says:

Will higher ed be the next bubble to burst, with student loans providing the easy credit that inflated it?

What would be the impact of such a burst?


ricki said...

I'm guessing the impact would be:

A lot of people who are at college "on credit" suddenly find they can't continue.

College enrollment drops.

Adjuncts and non-tenured people are let go, perhaps some schools even "RIF" (reduction in force; how they can legally fire a tenured person) tenured people.

HOPEFULLY some of the bloated administrations are cut to save funds (but I don't see that happening)

College libraries suffer (more)

Departments that are "efficient" in that they generate a high number of credit hours for their budgets and have large enrollments are probably less hard-hit.

Departments like engineering, life sciences, computer science probably continue to do OK because there's a continuing need for people with that kind of training.

"Fluff" departments like InsertFavoriteVictimGroup Studies, Pop Culture Studies, etc. go by the wayside.

POSSIBLY, some people who "shouldn't" be in college (they lack the interest and the background but are going because "everyone does now") goes into an apprenticeship or to a vocational school instead.

I see some bad, some perhaps not-so-bad. Of course, I'm a scientist with tenure, so I feel like unless things really go bad, I'm probably safe. I would not feel the same way were I a Women's Studies professor coming up for tenure in a couple years...

Ellen K said...

Yes. Luckily my oldest son will graduate in May. My youngest is taking the semester off to work because we simply cannot afford anymore student loans. Of course, it used to be that state schools were the refuge of the struggling middle class. What will big state schools with their big state budgets do when parents decide, wisely, to send their kids to community college for a couple of years first. Will we then see Obama bailing out the likes of Harvard and Yale?