All Articles Tagged "college education"
With millions of college students submerged in nearly $27,000 in debt, many are hoping that the trade off is a higher spot on in the job market food chain. Unfortunately, 48 percent of Americans think that college graduates do not have the necessary skills for a job in their career field, a recent poll reveals. Employers do not even want to risk hiring college graduates—they believe that their skills are too underdeveloped, reports The Huffington Post.
Dr. Bill R. Path says that many people want to blame the feeble economy. But Path, president of Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology and contributing writer for the Huffington Post, adds that the lack of experience summarizes why only 16 percent of college seniors have jobs after graduation.
A recent survey conducted by the recruitment firm, Adecco found that a whopping 66 percent of hiring managers did not believe that recent college graduates are ready to take on the “real world.” Also, 58 percent of participants had no desire to hire entry-level graduates.
Employers have found that the candidates applying for their job postings do not have the required skills for hire. Path believes that the evolving changes in the workplace require increased knowledge in technology; this may be contributing to the problem. Universities have not been making the effort to change the curriculum to reflect the shifting nature of the job market.
If this “skills gap” issue isn’t resolved soon, Path warns, not only will the reputation of the U.S.’ post-secondary education weaken, but America’s workforce will continue to destabilize and worker productivity will dwindle. Path has a plan: colleges should look to develop a rapport with businesses and industries to form an easier pathway to potential employers for students.
We must be reminded that the outdated notion that any degree will open opportunities should be dissolved, says Path. Some degrees are just not as weighty as other more substantial degrees. College officials should inform students that “not all college degrees are created equal.” Path conclusively adds that colleges should add more interactive, hands-on learning into the core curriculum to keep up with advancing technology.
As a recent college graduate, I’ve found that the so-called “real world” was always discussed as if it was something out-of-reach and to be experienced in the future. However, this is the exact reason why college grads aren’t being hired. The skills that employers require from candidates shouldn’t be a secret. There should always be a concrete connection between students and employers.
Do you think college education has kept up with the demands of the jobs landscape?
The University System of Georgia put a program in place, the African-American Male Initiative, 10 years ago and now, according to The Chronicle of Higher Education, enrollment from black men is up 80 percent. The program was held up at a recent meeting of the American Council on Education as an example of something that has worked to get Black men in college.
Another area of higher education where the number of Black men is on the right is for-profit universities. An article published last summer on The Root says The University of Phoenix had the largest population of Black male students in the United States. I was surprised but that quickly gave way to apprehension as I began to wonder how many African Americans attended for-profit universities without fully knowing what they are and how they operate. Then, I stopped and thought, “Do I really know how for-profit universities operate?”
College education has become almost expected for any kind of success (which could be a problem in an of itself) but unfortunately, college counseling can be ineffective or non-existent, especially in the African-American community. It’s important to recognize that not all college educations are created equal.
For-profit education has existed in this country for over a century mostly for K-12 students. However, as the importance of a college degree rose in the job market, so did the market for more flexible post-secondary education options. For-profit universities generally target non-traditional students; those that are older, working, and a very large amount of low-income and first-generation college students, or in a position where a traditional four-year college experience is either impractical or undesirable. For this, for-profit universities should be applauded. They serve students that are traditionally ignored and oftentimes offer a second chance to people from marginalized and troubled backgrounds.
Unfortunately, the model several of these universities use is troubling at best and criminal at worst. Unlike public and private universities the majority of the money made at for-profit universities isn’t invested back into the school. When focusing on the bottom line, counseling professionals are the first people cut. What you end up with is a school of marginalized students, paying exorbitant prices, for an education they will more than likely never complete.
According to The Washington Post, about 16 percent of undergraduate students graduate from The University of Phoenix in six years. The American average is 55.5%. More than half of the students enrolled at for-profit universities make less than $40,000 a year and support one or more family members. These populations are less likely to graduate on time no matter what school they attend. So let’s focus on African Americans. Thirty-nine percent of African Americans attending public and private universities, on average, graduate within six years. That is more than double the rate for for-profit universities.
Dorell Wright has more than basketball on his mind. He wants to help others get a great education.
The NBA Forward-Guard recently partnered with the UNCF (United Negro College Fund) through his own organization, The D Wright Way Foundation, to create the KB3 Scholarship Fund. Named for Wright’s childhood friend, the late Khelcey Barrs III, the fund will assist graduating high school seniors who face difficult challenges in attaining a higher education degree. Barrs was considered a talented young forward. His talent had been attracting interest from major college basketball schools while a high school sophomore. But he collapsed and died from cardiomegaly in 2004 after playing a series of late night basketball games.
The scholarship was officially announced just before the start of the 76ers home game on Sunday. Wright presented a check for $50,000 to UNCF to start the KB3 Scholarship Fund.
Wright joined the NBA in 2004. The D Wright Way Foundation is a public, not-for-profit organization that provides academic and leadership development programs for inner-city youth with limited financial resources.
In an effort to collect on student loan repayments as the number of delinquencies rise, schools are increasingly turning to the court system for help. The result is lawsuits filed against graduates who are falling behind in payments.
According to the Today show, colleges and universities across the nation, including Ivy League schools like the University of Pennsylvania, are using the courts to compel students to repay loans that the schools, by law, have to collect on. Unlike other debt, graduates can’t shake student loan debt even through bankruptcy proceedings.
Lowering the financial burden of getting a college education was one of the big points President Obama made during his State of the Union address in January. This Washington Post article makes the case that for most people, college debt is not as crushing as some of the extreme stories we’ve been hearing lately would indicate. In fact, if you study something that leads to a well-paying career, college education is as valuable as it ever was.
But the case has also been made for the fact that tuition and college costs keep rising at a time when the job market is in trouble. Moreover, the jobs that some students are preparing for do not reflect the way that the market is going, where digital technology, innovation, and other qualities are more highly valued.
In an op-ed from a couple of weeks ago Charles Blow writes in The New York Times that we’re entering an era of “the new normal” where “students and their families to continue to make increasingly greater financial sacrifices in order to complete a postsecondary education.” And the burden is being felt most among those in the lower income brackets.
Just this week, the Obama administration cut commissions for the collectors who chase borrowers for repayment, Bloomberg reports. This should push collection companies to adhere to federal laws which state that collectors should offer repayment terms that help borrowers get back on track. Previously, collectors could make thousands of dollars by forcing borrowers to pay more than they could afford to get themselves on a better financial footing.
Be strategic folks. If you’re planning for college — or any big purchase — be realistic about what you can afford, save your money, and move at the pace that will allow you to reach your goal without a debt that will follow you for decades.
Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are already struggling financially, and now new requirements for a popular student loan program is hitting HBCUs hard. According to a new report, changes to a government student loan are making it difficult for thousands of students to afford college this school year. The federal Parent PLUS loan program requirements are more stringent. And for HBCUs that need as many students as possible, this is affecting their enrollment stats as more of their students come from low-income families.
And, according to NPR news program “Here & Now,” thousands of HBCUs “got an unexpected shock this year when their renewals for the PLUS loans were denied.” The loans allow parents to borrow money for tuition, room and board, books and other school-related expenses.
The National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education estimates that 14,000 students at HBCUs were denied PLUS loans – about half the students at those schools who applied for them.
“Dr. William Harvey, president of Virginia’s Hampton University, estimates that the change has cost HBCUs about $168 million,” reports “Here & Now.”
But experts are advising the denied parents to appeal the denials. The Department of Education will reinstate loans during appeal if families had PLUS loans in the past.
New students, however, are out of luck.
According to WBTV, the U.S. Department of Education made the changes to the PLUS loan program in an effort to make sure government loans line up with industry standards to decrease the rate at which students default on the loans.
College student loan debt is a problem, but is this the way to solve it?
Coming to a new country and starting over is difficult for anyone. In her new memoir Finally Reid: The Extraordinary Testimonies of an Ordinary Woman, Marcia Reid recounts her journey from Jamaica to the US in the early 1980s. Since then, she’s traveled around the world, graduated from college, and launched a career that has her now working for IPG, one of the world’s hugest advertising, marketing, and public relations companies.
We sent Reid a few questions via email to get a little more insight into her life and times.
Madame Noire: You talk about your life in Jamaica as a relatively carefree one. You worked, shopped, made friends. Yet you decided to come to the US to work and study in New York. Why?
Marcia Reid: There were several reasons for coming to the US. Number one was the socio-economic reason. In Jamaica, the US was known as the “Land of Opportunity” where you have limitless career opportunities and can gain financial wealth at a faster pace. I got the opportunity to shop even more, and it was easier to pursue a college degree here. It was also an excellent opportunity to get away from my very strict upbringing.
MN: It was 1982. What was the experience like coming to the US from Jamaica at 22 years old at that time?
MR: It was amazing, exciting, and scary. Everything was huge and complex compared to what I was accustomed to on a small island. This was the first time I left home and had no directions or money. I spent most of the money I had within two weeks of my arrival. It was the end of August and I went on a shopping spree, not knowing that the reason that clothes were inexpensive was because the season was changing. I soon found out that most of the clothes that I bought could only be worn for another month or so, as it was getting colder. I had not even bought a winter coat, so I needed to find a job real fast.
As I pounded the pavement of New York City daily in search of a job, I soon realized that without the “New York experience” and the coveted green card, the only jobs available to me included house cleaning, baby sitting, or posing nude. In my book, I write about staying with a friend’s mother, sleeping on a pull-out bed in her living room and how I was eventually able to find a great opportunity at a luxury cruise line.
MN: By 1989, you were a mom, had traveled the world, were married and separated, owned an apartment, and had decided to focus on your college studies while working full-time. How did all of that help (or hinder) your focus on your studies?
MR: While all of this made it extremely challenging at the time, I became very focused on my studies. My son was born in 1989 and my life was spinning out of control. I was separated, buried under a mountain of debt and trying to balance motherhood, work and school. It was especially difficult, as I was going to school full-time and working full-time but I was determined to stay focused on my studies. I knew that a college degree would be advantageous to advancing my career so that I could be in a better financial position and provide a better future for my child.
MN: By the end of the book, you’ve got degrees from New York University and Columbia University and you’ve moved from Florida back to the New York area. You’re now the Director of Diversity Management at IPG. Please describe your job and the challenges of promoting diversity at a large company.
MR: My role as Director of Diversity and Inclusion is to help my company become one of the most diverse and inclusive companies operating in business. This is a commitment that IPG takes very seriously, and I work closely with our HR and business leaders across our network of agencies and corporate offices to develop and execute programs that focus on recruitment, retention and development. I help educate our employees about the changing demographics and its impact on our business, our workforce, and our marketplace. I work closely with our Business Resource Groups in the U.S. as well as the Women’s Leadership Networks in Australia, India, China and London. I also launched a mentoring program, lead a fellowship program of young professionals, manage our relationships with schools, and oversee our annual Diversity and Inclusion survey that goes out to all our US employees.
MN: How do your life experiences impact how you perform your job?
MR: My life experiences make me passionate about the work that I do. I can better relate to employees that are similar or different from me in the workplace because of my diverse background. I understand some of the challenges they face and can provide more suitable solutions and resources to create a more inclusive work environment, where everyone can feel engaged and perform at their best to achieve our goal.
No surprise here, but college is expensive. The College Board just reported that the average price for tuition, room and board, etc with tax deductions is $12,110 for a public school and $23,840 for a private, nonprofit school. (This was just released about for-profit colleges. LOL.) This year’s increase, according to The New York Times, is smaller than that of years past at three percent. Still, the high cost and tight job market has got a number of media outlets asking if the education is worth the expense. Well one day you or your kid could be President of the US and then all of that education will seem like a great investment.
The folks at Degree Jungle, a site that provides info about online college programs, have pulled together a fun and rather interesting infographic that illustrates just how much it costs to educate a US President (or presidential candidate). Think somewhere around $450K. Wow. Info below.
By Degreejungle.com The Cost to Educate a President
A Georgetown University study shows that those with only a high school education have been hurt most by the economic recession. Between the beginning of 2010 and the beginning of this year, people who only went as far as a high school diploma lost 200,000 jobs.
Those with a college degree have fared much better. The research broke down the 140 million members of the U.S. workforce into three groups: those with no college education; those with some college or an Associate’s degree; and those with a Bachelor’s degree or more. The research found that the group with the college degree and better suffered no net job loss over the two-year time period. In fact, the number of people who had jobs climbed by 2.2 million people between the first signs of the recession in 2007 to the beginning of this year.
This probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise. But it does say something about the ways in which our workforce and the jobs available in this country are moving in a different direction.
“Industries like manufacturing, construction and transportation, where many of the jobs don’t require college degrees, have all had sharp job losses since the recession started,” Forbes reports. There’s been a great deal of focus about how the loss of these jobs affects men. However, job losses in government and education have affected women as well.
African-American women are swarming college campuses, in essence creating a cushion for themselves against this current recession and future economic fluctuations. As we continue to make progress in this “innovation economy” having that degree under your belt will become even more important.
As the class of 2012 graduates from high school, parents are excited to see their children grow up, but many are afraid of the mounting debt from a college bill looming in the distance. These days with the cost of college rising as well as everything else, if your child is intent on going to college, you’ve got to think strategically on how you both will manage the heavy price tag. The Daily Finance shares five top websites to assist parents and students in securing financial aid for college.
1. US Department of Education: The site will help you stay abreast of any changes to Student Aid programs as well as an early evaluation on financial aid eligibility.
2. National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators: Take a look under the “Students, Parents & Counselors” section, you’ll find resources for state-by-state financial aid programs.
3. The College Board: Its scholarship search tool has a selection of over 2,200 programs with financial aid, scholarship and internship information.
4. Studentaid.com: Families with a household income over $40,000 will be charged for its services, but this site offers a variety of scholarships, grants and loans on a customized basis.
5. Savingforcollege.com: While this plan also offers financial aid and scholarship information, it concentrates more on creating a savings plan for your child’s college education.
(New York Times) — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Monday that he would support allowing the flagship campuses of the State University of New York to charge higher tuition than the rest of the system, a stance that could pit him against fellow Democrats who worry that lower-income students could be priced out of the top schools. The governor said he would support a State University proposal to set a five-year schedule of tuition increases at all SUNY undergraduate campuses, and would allow the four research campuses — at Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo and Stony Brook — to propose their own, higher undergraduate tuition increases, subject to legislative approval. “There is no cookie cutter,” Mr. Cuomo said at a news conference. “Some may decide that they need to increase tuition; some may decide they don’t. We’re trying to flip the model.” Under the new model, he said, “we’re not going to tell you what to do.”