Thursday, September 29, 2005

Kids, bucks, and American Universities

Soon I'll be paying for two kids in college and have a third one getting close. Articles like this bother me... a lot.

Victor David Hansen concludes his article in WSJ with this disturbing comment,
The signs of erosion on our campuses are undeniable, whether we examine declining test scores, spiraling costs, or college graduates' ignorance of basic facts and ideas. In response, our academic leadership is not talking about a more competitive curriculum, higher standards of academic accomplishment, or the critical need freely to debate important issues. Instead, it remains obsessed with a racial, ideological, and sexual spoils system called "diversity." Even as the airline industry was deregulated in the 1970s, and Wall Street now has come under long-overdue scrutiny, it is time for Americans, if we are to ensure our privileged future, to re-examine our era's politicized university.
And then this story in the weekly standard by James Piereson in the Weekly Standard,
When this year's freshmen enter the academic world, they will encounter a bizarre universe in which big-time athletics, business education, and rigorous science programs operate under the umbrella of institutions that define themselves in terms of left-wing ideology. This is especially true of the 100 or so elite public and private institutions that are able to select their students from among a multitude of applicants seeking entry, and true also of the humanities and social science departments that define the political and social meaning of the academic enterprise. These students will enter the world of what we may call the left university.
Finally here's a response from my nephew reflecting the pressure kids feel on campus,
I also agree that it probably was the right thing, but the assignment was discussing pre-emptive wars in the context of Just and Unjust Wars by Michael Walzer. Also, our professor is an older gentleman but the TA's grade our essays, and mine was an outspoken opponent of the war. For my first college essay, I really didn't want to go against the grader. So it was a little heartless, but it's still early.
Stick with the older guys and have heart!

1 comment:

John Ruberry said...

Believe me, this story won't be going away soon.