Many Americans are unhappy with state of higher education and no longer convinced it’s worth the trouble. Nearly half of the respondents to a poll taken in August by Public Agenda said a college education is no longer a good investment because of the debt incurred, while 44% said they considered schools to be wasteful and inefficient.
About 60% also said institutions are mainly concerned about their bottom lines and that a college education is no longer necessary to be successful. Even more troubling is that the results were similar to a February poll conducted by the Gallup Purdue Index.
The outlook isn’t much better for students already on campus. An annual survey of more than 140,000 low-income students reported that because of costs only half actually enrolled into their school of choice. A third said they couldn’t afford their first choice and nearly 90% picked a school based on cost.
“Students are also less likely than in the past to go to college just to learn, the survey found,” education writer Jon Marcus wrote in an article for Hechinger Report. “A record 60% said they were pursuing degrees because they want to get good jobs.”
College graduates did admit to researchers that their education made an impact on their lives, but not necessarily in a good way. One poll found that about a third of grads who borrowed money for college had put off buying a house and a quarter postponed starting a business because of the debt.