The Death of Higher Education
As tuition and far-left ideologies rise, many universities are experiencing a plunge in enrollment and donations.
The average graduate of the Class of 2016 has $37,172 in student loan debt. Altogether, that’s almost $620 billion more than the total of U.S. credit card debt. But the staggering cost of tuition isn’t the only reason why many liberal arts colleges have observed a steady decline in enrollment over the past decade. The radical suppression of free speech and the blatant touting of far-left ideologies have caused many students to seek their degrees in a more tolerant environment.
The University of Missouri is closing down three dorms this year due to lack of enrollment since its infamous Melissa Click incident and its announcement of an “open season” on student journalists last year.
And it’s not just Mizzou. Alumni of colleges and universities nationwide are awakening to the fact that their beloved alma maters are nothing like they remember. “As an alumnus of the college, I feel that I have been lied to, patronized, and basically dismissed as an old, white bigot who is insensitive to the needs and feelings of the current college community,” one 77-year-old wrote in a letter to Amherst College’s alumni fund. He proceeded to reduce his support to the college to a mere $5 per year before cutting off his donations entirely. A 1982 Yale graduate said he was on campus last fall when activists tried to shut down a free speech conference, “because apparently they missed irony class that day.” He concluded, “The worst part is that campus administrators are wilting before the activists like flowers.” Not surprisingly, Yale College’s alumni fund was flat between this year and last.
To put it plainly, alumni from a range of generations and schools say they are baffled by today’s college culture. Their predominant lament is that students are irreparably embroiled in racial and identity politics. Let’s put it more plainly: Colleges are America’s most racist consortiums. They encourage black dorms and black graduations; they praise minority hatred of whites through “white privilege” indoctrination seminars and ethnic-and-black-studies courses; and they shamelessly tear down statues of their old, white, male founders and re-name academic buildings that were christened for bigoted, slave-owning misogynists. Modern universities have eviscerated and dishonored their heritage by judging them by today’s standards rather than in the context of their times. Not even Thomas Jefferson is safe at the University of Virginia he founded.
Is this academic moral decline worth upwards of $60,000 a year in tuition? Not by a long shot. To add insult to injury, most college students graduate without taking any courses that enrich their intellect or develop their character (which was, after all, the original purpose of universities). Today, one can obtain a bachelor’s in English lit at UCLA without even cracking open a book of Shakespeare’s plays while being required to read the lesbian interpretation “Juliet and Juliet.” Other colleges freely spend their students’ tuition dollars to put free condoms and lubricant in every student dorm or free bus rides to the nearest Planned Parenthood.
Even more shocking is the Institute of Education Statistics estimate that 40% of students at a four-year college drop out before completing their degree. For the 60% who do complete their degree, 64% take longer than four years to graduate, costing themselves nearly $70,000 in lost wages and educational expenses per year. In light of these facts, many young people are forgoing the traditional BA for trade and vocational schools after realizing the obvious truth: higher education is no longer worth the social and financial costs. The prediction that college closures will triple by 2017 only confirms this.
While wealthy fools will continue to fund Yale and its fellow left-wing seminaries, a day of reckoning may well be on the horizon for our institutions of “higher education.”