Communications and Society blog: By and for students in Marist COM 201

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College is a Waste of Money and Time, according to James Altucher

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I was visiting the Financial Services office yesterday.  I overheard a phone call to a perspective student’s parents.  The Marist Representative said quoted the parent that the estimated cost of attendance here at Marist is about 40,000 dollars a year.  Which equals roughly 120,000 dollars to receive an undergraduate degree.  Needless to say, I felt a little panicked when I thought of the amount of student loans I was taking out.  But I justified the loans in that I am receiving an excellent education and I will get an excellent job.  But then a yahoo article titled “Should Teens Skip College?” caught my eye.  James Altucher, a hedge fund manager for Formula Capital and a college graduate, “claims that sending your kid to college is a bad idea.”

Altucher cited at study that “found that after two years of college, 45% of students learned little to nothing. After four years, 36% of students learned almost nothing,” while the cost of attendance is continually rising.  Altucher lists starting a business, working or a charity, traveling, and writing a book as alternatives to going to college.  I have not started a business or wrote a book, but I have been fortunate enough to volunteer for a charity and travel the world in doing so.  I began comparing my college experience thus far to my experience traveling for this international peace organization.  In my travels I visited many different countries and was exposed to many diverse people.  I learned to open mind, about many cultures, and most importantly I learned that my culture is not the only one in the world, nor is it the ‘right’ one.  Thus far college, however, has not made the same lasting impression.  I agree with the statistics sited by Altucher.  As students in college, we work to earn good grades.  So we study and study to get an A on the next test, and then immediately forget all that we had learned.  I don’t think I have truely learned one thing in college that wasn’t solely to make the grade.  Once I graduate and am searching for a job, it doesn’t matter how much information I took away from school, it only matters that I earned my degree.  Are we basically paying 180,000 dollars for a piece of paper that says I am qualified for a  job?



Written by stephsheff

February 9, 2011 at 5:20 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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