Monday, 11 October 2010

College

A number of newspapers put out an interesting article over the weekend. The Southeast Missourian was one of them.  The article?  Kids are attending the first year of college, then dropping out....which triggers this amazing tax-revenue sharing episode where billions of dollars are going to state colleges, and completely wasted because of the 'bad' numbers.

The wasted amount?  Using numbers from 2003 to 2008....they figured it's around $6.2 billion wasted.

Shocker?  Actually, no.

I would suspect that for the past three or four decades....folks have noticed a significant number of kids running off to college and failing the first year.  The vast majority have to deal with parents asking stupid questions and then they just give up.

The true issue?  There are three problems.  First, there is this party atmosphere which exists at colleges where students didn't have to deal with it while under dad's roof.  Dad had rules throughout high school, and you simply couldn't violate them.  You can ask any average kid in the first year of college about beer or alcohol consumption....and it'd surprise you on the amount they consume weekly.

Second, there's this issue of colleges letting very average or even less-than-average students onto a campus.  If they went back and reviewed high school grades....and a kid was mostly a B and C average student....then you could suspect that he's going to have major issues that first year.  The majority in this group, probably won't make it.

Third, most folks of the 18-year old group....really don't know what they want.  You ask some kid to establish a major around 18 and they simply pick something to make folks happy.  They start classes and think that it's a simple area that the college will teach them.  They guess wrong....and six months later, they've got major issues and probably can't pass the first year.

Fixing this?  You can't fix the alcohol problem, and I doubt you can fix the 'major' problem, but you could make a higher standard on high school grades.  A kid with mostly B's and C's....ought to spend a year in a community college and get their act together.  Maybe, we should downsize the class limits of what a university can take for the first year of college.  The point here...is that we as a nation and a bunch of tax-payers....are wasting money.

Two Dead Guys Answer

In the last couple of days...Harry Reid was given a 'softball' question...which you'd expected a pretty decent comeback.

The question? "Can you think of a greatest living American?"

Senator Harry Reid paused, and then responded: "I’m glad I had the opportunity to know Ted Kennedy. Whether you agreed with him or not, what a life he lead with his two brothers being assassinated, his other brother being killed in World War II. And Robert Byrd who just died. What a… he was in the Congress of the United States for more than 25 percent of the time that we have been a country. That’s fairly remarkable."

It's a remarkable answer....considering both are dead.  Remember, the question is....amongst the living.

Harry could have said Viking quarterback Brett Favre.  He could have said Microsoft's Bill Gates.  He could have said President Obama.  He could have said the men and women of the armed services.  There's alot that he could have said....but you end up with two dead senators.

Folks end up in the Senate mostly because voters are stupid.  Voters would readily vote for a guy because he looks good in a suit.  They'd vote for a guy because he attended Harvard.  They'd vote for a guy because his wife is cute and says cute things about him.  Typically....stupid answers are just accepted.  So both Senator Byrd and Kennedy can rest assured....even when dead.....they are the greatest Americans living (at least Harry says so).