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Old Jan 8, 2015, 09:51 PM   #1
Leonardite
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"Free"

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Old Jan 8, 2015, 10:48 PM   #2
BES76
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"Free"
Hahahahahaha ... oh my ... must catch my breath ... Seriously though, I would rather see more effective HS educations. Kids need to be better prepared for life out of HS ... you don't HAVE to have a higher level education to be successful or live a good life.

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/...rogram-n282706

"The White House did say that if all states participated, that nine million students could benefit saving on average $3,800 in tuition per year for a full-time student. That means the program could cost in the billions of dollars."
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Old Jan 9, 2015, 06:53 AM   #3
IntenselyOrange
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Old Jan 9, 2015, 09:15 AM   #4
Second and Chalmers
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Originally Posted by BES76 View Post
Kids need to be better prepared for life out of HS ... you don't HAVE to have a higher level education to be successful or live a good life.
The problem is that increasingly you do, and this is only going to make it more so that way.

There's a nugget of a good idea here, but in the backwards thunderdome that our higher education system has become, it's hard to see this being a first step in the right direction.

And, of course, the real thing at work here, it's easy for Obama to be the Sugar Plum Fairy now that all of these ideas are dead on arrival at Congress and the democratic leadership don't have to worry about actually putting these things to paper and to a vote.

Last edited by Second and Chalmers; Jan 9, 2015 at 09:18 AM.
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Old Jan 9, 2015, 09:29 AM   #5
IlliniJim20
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The problem is that increasingly you do, and this is only going to make it more so that way.

There's a nugget of a good idea here, but in the backwards thunderdome that our higher education system has become, it's hard to see this being a first step in the right direction.

And, of course, the real thing at work here, it's easy for Obama to be the Sugar Plum Fairy now that all of these ideas are dead on arrival at Congress and the democratic leadership don't have to worry about actually putting these things to paper and to a vote.
Yep, he is simply pandering.

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Old Jan 9, 2015, 09:43 AM   #6
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Yep, he is simply pandering.
Which, y'know, that's the way the system works.

I'm glad Obama has consistently made an issue of higher education. It's something that doesn't get talked about enough and is critically important for our future competitiveness.

Last edited by Dan; Jan 9, 2015 at 10:09 AM.
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Old Jan 9, 2015, 03:33 PM   #7
GilThorpe
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well, education at any level is really a state issue.

if Tennessee is doing it and making it work, other states will copy the idea as well.

if he wants this to get any traction in Congress, he needs to propose how to pay for it, via cuts to other programs. Simply raising taxes to do so, is d.o.a. in either chamber.

But in general, its just another example of Obama trying to give away our money. Its really what his entire presidency has been about.
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Old Jan 9, 2015, 03:53 PM   #8
Ransom Stoddard
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Originally Posted by Second and Chalmers View Post
Which, y'know, that's the way the system works.

I'm glad Obama has consistently made an issue of higher education. It's something that doesn't get talked about enough and is critically important for our future competitiveness.
I suppose it depends on what you mean by higher education. Some areas of the country have shortages of tradespeople like plumbers, electricians, and skilled construction folks. As a result, some of those jobs are being filled (poorly) by the untrained and/or illegals. Our future competitiveness is just as dependent (or more) on the ability for our economy to sustain itself without continuing to import or outsource labor.

My own perspective is that too often we focus on a degree as a path to a successful future and comfortable lifestyle, when in reality there are many paths to that. Kids graduate from college with enormous amounts of debt, when they could have gone to a trade school for a couple of years, get out and apprentice for a couple of years, and in the same time span that they would have been in college are now making decent money in a trade, without the debt.

And from the perspective of a hiring manager, an associates degree means next to squat in most cases. Community colleges should be looked at as nothing more than a stepping stone to a 4 year degree or a way to supplement education for career purposes. Unfortunately, they're often just high-school extended.

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Old Jan 10, 2015, 01:56 AM   #9
bdutts
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"Free"
Over here in Scotland, a university education at a Scottish university (not just community college), is 100% free for Scottish citizens as long as the enrollee can met the entrance requirements.

Not sure how much that costs, but the total population of Scotland is ~6,000,000. Since the population of the US is considerably higher, I would assume that the free CC for anyone would have to be paid for by some other way than taxing the rich. And no, I didn't read the article so if the way to fund it is in there, I apologize.
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Old Jan 10, 2015, 08:28 AM   #10
illinibasketweaving
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Originally Posted by BES76 View Post
Hahahahahaha ... oh my ... must catch my breath ... Seriously though, I would rather see more effective HS educations. Kids need to be better prepared for life out of HS ... you don't HAVE to have a higher level education to be successful or live a good life.

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/...rogram-n282706

"The White House did say that if all states participated, that nine million students could benefit saving on average $3,800 in tuition per year for a full-time student. That means the program could cost in the billions of dollars."
To me it makes more sense to put the money in CC instead of HS, for the exact reason you state. You don't HAVE to have a higher level education, so improve the CC. The CCs offer a place for students to 1)find out if they're late bloomers and should be going to a 4-year school, and 2) not create massive student loan debt just to accomplish geneds.

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Old Jan 10, 2015, 12:09 PM   #11
hermie1985
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CC is already really affordable. Free could be ridiculously expensive. Costs could soar with increased enrollments and yet the lack of skin in the game might see no more accomplished if students do not complete the courses.

I saw this tutoring a work force investment recip. Got 1/2 way through. When a job opened up, gone.
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Old Jan 10, 2015, 07:03 PM   #12
AzIlliniFan
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Since I often hear/read that there is a shortage of skilled labor (plumbers, mechanics, roofers, etc.) in the U.S. why not offer free or reduced tuition to Trade/Technical schools?

If you earn the degree/certification in 2 years its free. Add 25% of the cost onto the student for every additional year needed to complete the program. The students need to have some incentive, skin in the game.

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Old Jan 11, 2015, 11:31 AM   #13
BES76
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Originally Posted by illinibasketweaving View Post
To me it makes more sense to put the money in CC instead of HS, for the exact reason you state. You don't HAVE to have a higher level education, so improve the CC. The CCs offer a place for students to 1)find out if they're late bloomers and should be going to a 4-year school, and 2) not create massive student loan debt just to accomplish geneds.
I see it the other way. I think this is exposed when you look at how US HS students compare to the rest of the world ... we are continually ranked lower than many other countries. Yet, more foreign HS students come to the US for advanced educations than the other way around.

http://www.slate.com/articles/life/e..._disaster.html

" In America, high school is for socializing."
" More than half of American high school students who have studied in another country agree that our schools are easier."

However, in huge irony, having skilled labor coming out of HS can drive your economic engine more than PHds. Improving lower education (both vocational and academic) will create better opportunities than doing it after the fact. That's just my 2 cents. I don't see Obama's plan as a push for vocational skills, just academics.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/emsi/201...-workers-ages/
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Old Jan 11, 2015, 09:39 PM   #14
Second and Chalmers
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Originally Posted by Ransom Stoddard View Post
I suppose it depends on what you mean by higher education. Some areas of the country have shortages of tradespeople like plumbers, electricians, and skilled construction folks. As a result, some of those jobs are being filled (poorly) by the untrained and/or illegals. Our future competitiveness is just as dependent (or more) on the ability for our economy to sustain itself without continuing to import or outsource labor.

My own perspective is that too often we focus on a degree as a path to a successful future and comfortable lifestyle, when in reality there are many paths to that. Kids graduate from college with enormous amounts of debt, when they could have gone to a trade school for a couple of years, get out and apprentice for a couple of years, and in the same time span that they would have been in college are now making decent money in a trade, without the debt.

And from the perspective of a hiring manager, an associates degree means next to squat in most cases. Community colleges should be looked at as nothing more than a stepping stone to a 4 year degree or a way to supplement education for career purposes. Unfortunately, they're often just high-school extended.
Totally agree with all of this.
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Old Jan 11, 2015, 09:40 PM   #15
danielb927
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Over break I read an interesting book called The Smartest Kids in the World. The author was in contact with three American students studying abroad in South Korea, Finland, and Poland, three countries outperforming the U.S. in education. Her specific metric was a test called PISA, which is more focused on applying knowledge via critical thinking rather than simply testing how much students can remember. BES76's post brought it to mind because the author shared similar quotes about the lack of rigor in American schools being a key difference between the U.S. and the three countries examined. Coming out of Uni High, which is full of very smart, motivated kids, I remember being a bit appalled at how nonchalant some of my new UIUC friends were about their academics. I'd have to imagine that most high school kids are similar and don't buy in to the idea that their education is important. IMO, you can throw a lot of money into schools or higher education without solving that problem.

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Old Jan 12, 2015, 03:51 PM   #16
Illiniaaron
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I think the idea is a non-starter for a couple of reasons. First if this became law you would have long waiting lists to get in, like California (who offers "free" community college) suffers from. A lot of their kids end up going out of state and paying because they don't want to wait to start their college education. My sister is in administration at a local community college. She says you would be shocked at the number of kids who don't come to class and don't finish who are actually paying tuition. I think if C.C. was free you would have a huge glut of people signing up who would not take it seriously taking away spots from serious students.
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Old Jan 12, 2015, 05:03 PM   #17
Ransom Stoddard
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I think the idea is a non-starter for a couple of reasons. First if this became law you would have long waiting lists to get in, like California (who offers "free" community college) suffers from. A lot of their kids end up going out of state and paying because they don't want to wait to start their college education. My sister is in administration at a local community college. She says you would be shocked at the number of kids who don't come to class and don't finish who are actually paying tuition. I think if C.C. was free you would have a huge glut of people signing up who would not take it seriously taking away spots from serious students.
Check out the online MOOCs like Coursera and edX--While they're not 100% comparable to a CC, they're free, and the completion rates are rock-bottom.

When something becomes free it loses its value. On top of that, ever heard of anyone flunking out of a CC?

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Old Jan 13, 2015, 07:05 AM   #18
IntenselyOrange
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Originally Posted by AzIlliniFan View Post
Since I often hear/read that there is a shortage of skilled labor (plumbers, mechanics, roofers, etc.) in the U.S. why not offer free or reduced tuition to Trade/Technical schools?

If you earn the degree/certification in 2 years its free. Add 25% of the cost onto the student for every additional year needed to complete the program. The students need to have some incentive, skin in the game.
Because no one wants to be a plumber (exaggeration). The public has been lead to believe that with a college degree you can sit in an office, have martinis and steak for lunch, and go home at the end of an 8 hour shift with a big paycheck and no worries. This is of course a lie, but most don't realize that.
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Old Jan 13, 2015, 09:03 AM   #19
Second and Chalmers
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Originally Posted by AzIlliniFan View Post
Since I often hear/read that there is a shortage of skilled labor (plumbers, mechanics, roofers, etc.) in the U.S. why not offer free or reduced tuition to Trade/Technical schools?

If you earn the degree/certification in 2 years its free. Add 25% of the cost onto the student for every additional year needed to complete the program. The students need to have some incentive, skin in the game.
I don't know about plumbing or roofing or whatever specifically, but part of the idea here is to make community college more of an applied, fitted to the marketplace's needs, trade school type of environment rather than a purgatorial netherworld for kids to pretend they're kinda-sorta in college.
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Old Jan 13, 2015, 03:38 PM   #20
IntenselyOrange
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I don't know about plumbing or roofing or whatever specifically, but part of the idea here is to make community college more of an applied, fitted to the marketplace's needs, trade school type of environment rather than a purgatorial netherworld for kids to pretend they're kinda-sorta in college.
Can you provide a link for this? I have not seen any suggestion that community college education in this nation be morphed into more of a trade school. I'm not sure what the difference between trade schools and community college would then become, but I'd be interested in seeing the plan.
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Old Jan 23, 2015, 03:45 PM   #21
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Can you provide a link for this? I have not seen any suggestion that community college education in this nation be morphed into more of a trade school. I'm not sure what the difference between trade schools and community college would then become, but I'd be interested in seeing the plan.
I too would be interested in that plan. I'd fund trade school before I'd fund junior college if I had to fund one or the other.

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