20 years ago colleges fit perfectly between being a productive means to moving up in society and being an affordable option for many (although certainly not all). Today, it seems that colleges and universities are beginning to fail at both of these purposes.
Inflation is certainly no surprise to see in the American economy, but few prices have inflated as dramatically and quickly as college costs. This issue was only made worse as the pandemic hit and half a million undergraduates had to drop out on the spot. In response, college enrollment is down and community colleges are much more considered.
On the other side of the coin, the value of a degree in America has steadily been dropping. While there is much variance access majors, today 73% of those with an undergraduate degree or higher do not have a job within their major. This doesn’t mean they don’t make more money than those without a degree, but it still majorly disincentivizes those who are looking to enroll today.
Luckily, there are some attempted solutions. The pandemic saw interest rates being paused, tuition increases being stopped, and now a few years later student debt forgiveness is being put into place. It’s steps like these and other radical changes that may just be needed to help return universities to the position they once held in America. Affordable, useful, and building better Americans.
Infographic Source: https://collegecliffs.com/why-colleges-go-out-of-business/