Before starting college, consider your chances of actually getting a degree

by Grace



A dual penalty for dropping out of college

Those students may find themselves doubly damned: cut out of consideration for professional-track jobs, and starting their careers years behind their peers who entered the workforce with just high-school diplomas. Many have student loans to boot.


4 Responses to “Before starting college, consider your chances of actually getting a degree”

  1. Unfortunately, I think this is unrealistic. The students who are most likely to drop out of college are the ones who are first in their family to go to college. One of the big reasons they do not succeed is that they simply have no idea how to succeed in college. They don’t understand college culture. And they are most likely to be at community colleges where there is little in the way of support. How can these kids make an accurate prediction of whether they are likely to graduate when they have no idea what it is going to be like?


  2. I listened to a WNYC interview yesterday with the reported who wrote that depressing NY Times piece on community college kids. One of the depressing things that was pointed out is that most classes at Laguardia CC are taught by adjuncts who do not hold office hours because 1) they have no place to meet students 2) they aren’t paid for office hours. The only time students can meet with the instructor is in the few minutes after class, while students are streaming into the room for the next class. Contrast that with elite liberal arts colleges, where professors are often expected to socialize with the students, come to their activities, hold extensive office hours in beautiful private offices, and work one on one with the students on research projects. We take the most at-risk students, give them the least support, and then wonder why they drop out in droves.


  3. Yes, it’s probably unrealistic unless some restrictions were placed on loans to make them available only to college-ready students.

    It’s unfortunate that funding issues leave so many students without important resources, but I think it would be better if the resources were better focused on the strongest low-income students. By the time they get to college, the chances for successful academic remediation are so low for some of these students that it might even be considered a disservice to string them along for a while only to have them drop out.



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