As much as I am personally horrified that so many Americans appear willing if not giddily eager to elect an avowed socialist to the White House, I must say having Bernie Sanders in the presidential race does add to the entertainment value.
He really does seem to believe a college education is necessary to make a decent living in the United States and as such it needs to be FREE for everyone while conveniently overlooking the fact that if you make it free, it is essentially worthless.
As a man from Brooklyn, Sanders is fond of mentioning the beloved City University of New York (CUNY) offered free tuition until the 1970s. However as the Fiscal Times says, and CUNY discusses on its website, free tuition was only available to certain students based on merit. In 1970, the university extended free tuition to all students and adopted open enrollment — a policy under which any high-school graduate would be admitted. The policy change triggered a rapid escalation in costs. The expenditures of the city’s Board of Higher Education rose from $298 million in fiscal 1971 to $533 million in fiscal 1975. Runaway college spending was one of a number of factors that contributed to New York City’s fiscal crisis — which resulted in the loss of local budget authority and the elimination of free CUNY tuition in 1976.
Oops!Another interesting little factoid about turning a college education into a participation trophy is that students don’t really value or care about finishing. Colleges with lax admission requirements often have low graduation rates. For example, California community colleges have an overall graduation rate of 26.2 percent. Daytona State College, a four-year Florida public institution that admits 100 percent of applicants, has a graduation rate of just 38.1 percent. What’s the point of taxpayers funding a couple years of frat parties, overpriced text books, “safe spaces” and diversity studies when what we really need more of are skilled plumbers, machinists and electricians, and what we’re going to end up with are a bunch more entitled, no-skilled whiners?
[Note: This article was written by Michele Hickford]