Columnist Jim Hofmann

It is true that some for-profit colleges take a monetary advantage of students and parents. It is also true that many for-profit colleges provide programs that are useful for finding gainful employment. Education is like everything else — think caveat emptor, as in, let the buyer beware.

By the way, who is going to protect students from non-profit colleges and universities? These fabulously wealthy bastions of higher education are complicit in a system that raises the cost of education annually, forcing students into burdensome debt that hounds them for years after graduation, assuming they graduate at all.

Considering the number of students who attend non-profit colleges and drop out, haven’t completed a degree program in four years, enroll in majors that lead to low-paying or non-existent jobs, well, it should be obvious that anyone considering attending any program in higher education must be protected. Caveat emptor.

The cost of college continues to rise year after year. According to the, the average in-state tuition is about $13,000 per year (plus). For out-of-state students, it rises to about $42,000 per year. A four-year degree has a price tag ranging from about $52,000, to almost $170,000, not including additional expenses.

By comparison, in today’s money, my college tuition was about $325 per year. OK, you got me. I am a crabby old man. However, I meet many young adults and the post-college stories they tell me about horrendous college debt and not being able to find a good job are tragic. Many of these bright, ambitious hard-working people whose idealism overshadowed the practical aspects of post-secondary education often seem bewildered and frustrated. Many also owe a bundle of money to the educational-government complex.

Of course, college is about more than money. Reading various reports published in the national news, college campuses can be dangerous places. There are constant stories of sexual abuse, threats to young women, being exposed to adults who ignore the destruction of property and support the denial of freedom of speech. Attacks on guaranteed constitutional freedoms are rife in many classrooms. And, many of those are stories are about the faculties!

In the beginning, colleges provided a curriculum that focused on law, medicine and theology. As technology advanced and the world of work became more complicated, the curricula expanded to include applied sciences, business, agriculture, expanding over time into research and development in a variety of fields. Generally, a basic post-secondary education also included studies in government, American history, literature, the arts, world history, languages, philosophy and other subjects that provided students with a well-rounded background that led to logical thinking and reasoning based on the human experience.

Today, many of those subjects that provided a higher understanding of the growth of knowledge as it related to human interactions in a free society have given way to gender and feminist studies, identity politics, social justice and atheistic humanism. Caveat emptor.

The abandonment of a moral-social compass based on God-given First Amendment rights for a hodge-podge of group-think tribalism has diminished respect for all points of view on campuses around the country.

At many universities, free speech protections are forfeited to radical destructive groups who will not stand for the presence of any view other than their own. This applies to some but not all anti-American, anti-male, anti-white groups with strongholds among the student bodies and faculties. Of course, anyone presenting a conservative viewpoint is either a Klan member or a Nazi and must be forced from the dais and driven off campus.

In such an environment, who is going to protect students from domineering ideological studies and the professors who support only one side in the process of learning? It has become obvious that many college and university administrators, out of either fear or complicity, support the rise of intolerance at many non-profit institutions. Caveat emptor.

It is true a person with a college degree of almost any kind will earn three-quarters to a million dollars more in a lifetime of work than a person who holds no degree. On the other hand, there are many college graduates living in their parents’ basements, blaming someone else for their plight and asking these two eternal questions: “How many tweets did I get today?” and “Do you want fries with that?”

“Boola boola” and let the buyer beware.

Jim Hofmann lives in Moab. He is a retired educator, corporate trainer, program developer; operations manager and engages in a variety of volunteer pursuits.

“The abandonment of a moral-social compass based on God-given First Amendment rights for a hodge-podge of group-think tribalism has diminished respect for all points of view on campuses around the country.”