Thursday, May 6, 2010

For Profit Colleges

There is a growing trend of for profit colleges . These are largely professional schools, focusing on business, medicine, and criminal justice. I currently teach a couple courses for Bryant and Stratton College which is one such school.

I find it difficult to say whether such schools are a good or bad thing. On the one hand they spread higher education to a wide variety of people and they are every good at teaching people the skills they need to land jobs. On the other hand I am deeply suspicious of the profit motive. We have been shown again and again that the profit motive is destructive and horrid. That may be a moot point, however, as traditional universities are far more "profit-driven" and "corporate minded" then many would care to admit.

NPR explained the whole situation today. I post that discussion here:

On the whole I see some value to them. They offer a needed service. But my hope is that non-profit universities start to truly mean what they claim: that they stop letting the drive for cash dominate their thought and they begin to return to a broad emphasis on the humanities and liberal arts.

A Liberal arts education is designed to create well-rounded individuals who can learn to become good citizens, friends, parents, neighbors, and just plain good people. So let us turn over the money-making to these for profit schools, let them get people jobs. But let us use this to return the focus of non-profit schools to improve character and educating the whole person.

1 comment:

  1. I taught in a for profit college. I do not recommend them to anyone. Don't ever go to one as a student and don't teach in one. The one where I taught was very disorganized and the training of the instructors was the very worst training that I have ever seen in a job. They expected Level 1 ESL students to do things that were way too hard for a beginner. Most of the instructors left after only 2 months because the school was so lousy.


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