In
fall of 2015, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, a
total of 17.0 million students were enrolled in undergraduate degree-granting
postsecondary institutions. Most if not all of these students were filled with enthusiasm
because they were embarking on a journey that would grant them a degree in the
career that they had their hearts set on; then, they find out that the school
requires them to take a bunch of subjects before they start taking the core
classes necessary for the career that they chose. What’s going on? Surprise!
Welcome to the world of general education. As a man of science, naturally, I
endeavor to find an objective way to convince you that a specific education is
better than a general education, but alas, there is no objective way to look at
this problem. So, the reasonable thing to do is to state why a specific
education is better than a general education based on the following criteria:
cost effectiveness, saves time, material covered is specific, it meets the
demands of the job market and its established role, freedom of choice, and the immediate
need as to why a specialized education is better than a general education in
the twenty first century.

COST EFFECTIVE

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In
the fall of 2017, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, 7.0
million students attended 2-year institutions and 13.4 million attended 4-year
institutions; it was averaged that in the 2015-2016 academic year, the average
annual price for undergraduate tuition, fees, room, and board was $16,757 at
public institution, $43,065 at private nonprofit institutions, and $23,776 at
private for-profit institution. Charges for tuition and required fees averaged
$6,613 at public institutions, $31,411 at private nonprofit institutions, and
$14,195 at private for-profit institutions. In the span of 2-years, a person at
a community college would have obtained an associate degree at a cost that is
almost 5 times less had they chosen to go to a 4-year institution. The cost of
a specialized education over a general education also includes the money that a
2-year student obtains in the time that a 4-year student is still in college;
for example, a student at a community college that graduates with a Licensed
Practical Nurse “LPN” degree will make a median salary of $44,090 per year for
2 years before a 4-year student even graduates. When you add the 2-years of
salary $88,180 plus $86,130 in additional tuition that a 4-year student has to
pay then, the total cost to the 4-year student is $174,310 and this does not
include the first 2-years of $86,130 of tuition that a 4-year student had to
pay. The cost of taking 2-years of general education adds up with time.

SAVES TIME

Time
is relative according to Albert Einstein; however, when you know what you want
to do and be, career-wise, then it can be an eternity if you are forced to take
general education classes. Time should not be wasted when you know exactly what
you want to do in life. You should chart your career goals and achieve them in
the most expedient manner. Specialized education is that straight path; it
offers practical training that is focused on students that have a clear image
of the career path that they wish to take. Most students that leave high-school
know exactly what they want to do because the time spent in high-school was to
not only learn general education classes, but also to learn in that span of
time, what you wanted to do career-wise. For the remainder of the students that
do not have a clue as to what they wish to do career-wise, then general
education is for them because at this point in their life, they do not mind
taking extra time to decide what it is that they wish to do career-wise. The
added time should benefit them because it will increase their knowledge base
and hopefully help them to decide what career path to choose.

 

 

MATERIAL COVERED IS SPECIFIC

For
all others, general education is a waste of time because in most cases it has
absolutely nothing to do with their career path. For example, no one forces English
majors to taken fluid mechanics and differential equation because it has absolutely
nothing to do with the career that they have chosen. So, why force engineering
students to take a year of English, a year of foreign languages, or philosophy,
when they have absolutely nothing to do with their job goals. The simple truth
is that colleges are trying to make money and the longer they keep you
enrolled, the more money they can milk-out of you. Also, do not buy that
poppy-cock that studying general education makes you think analytically; the
one true science which is mathematics, if developed properly, will help every
student think critically, analytically and scientifically. If a students were
to focus on a specialized education, then they would be required to focus on
only classes that are directly related to the skills and knowledge set of their
career field. After they graduate, they would have all of the practical and theoretically
skills from the specialized education to make them ready for the career of
their choice. Unlike the specialized education students, the general education
students will have to search for jobs that meet their skill-set because they
may not have the specific skills or classes to enter into a well-defined job,
unlike their specialized counterparts that have the tools for a competitive job
market.

From
mathematics we can obtain many truths, unlike philosophy which has only one
truth, “I think therefore I am.” Everything else rationalized in philosophy is
due to mathematics.

IT MEETS THE DEMANDS OF THE JOB
MARKET

In
order to meet the competitive needs of the job market, three separate entities,
the Michigan community colleges, the Michigan Economic Development Corp. and
employers of Detroit Michigan have joined forces in this competitive job market
to craft an innovative new model to provide job training that will not only
create jobs and growth, but also will provide a trained workforce for free to
help existing employers as well as those that the state is trying to recruit.
According to Sarah Hubbard, vice president of government relations at the
Detroit Regional Chamber,” it’s a creative approach amid difficult economic
times.” Difficult times have been a precursor to change for years, but never
more so at Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC). Like many
community and technical colleges, MCTC has had a civic and workforce goals that
seamlessly coexist within its vision and mission statement. For example, the
college’s vision is “to be an institution that transforms the community by
educating students who are globally aware, engaged citizens, skillful at their
work and lifelong learners.” Its mission is to “make individual dreams
achievable by providing access to learning opportunities that prepare students
to live and work in a democratic society within a global community” through a variety
of vehicles, including liberal education, technical education, and workforce
development.

Democracy
has been the birth right of every US citizen since the drafting and signing of
the constitution; Wilson was one of only six men to sign the Declaration of
Independence and the U.S. Constitution (Adams 1922, 134). Wilson was also
appointed to the U.S. Supreme court by Washington (Read 2000, 93); he has a
unique perspective and he argued against a bill of rights because he believed
that people would view it as the ultimate political authority and the source of
their rights. Wilson wanted each successive generation to define for itself the
nature and extent of individual rights. To that point, it can be argued that we
the people have the right to choose what we wish to study in relation to
classes that are specific to the career that is chosen. No one should be forced
to take general education classes that for the most part has absolutely nothing
to do with the career that they have chosen. Only the people and those directly
involved with a particular field should define what needs to be study for the
ultimate benefit and growth of that career. This statement falls in line with
Wilson’s belief that each generation should define rights overtime, thereby
effectively retaining authority, one of the most fundamental matters of
government that should never be ceded to any authority.

In 2017, we have seen
the U.S. struck with many natural disasters and it fall’s to every citizen of
this nation to do their part however little. We the people have it within our
power to craft programs that are specific to the needs of those affected by
hurricanes, flooding and fire; by tailoring college classes that teach students,
specifically what they need to know to help. We cannot, no, we should not wait
4-years with general education classes to help our fellow man. The role of colleges
has been to educate and prepare people to meet the needs of society. Colleges have
to become like Architecture that embodies all of humanity. It has to be imbued
with the spirit of humanity so that it not only reflects our strengths, and
dreams, but also our desires to evolve beyond what we are today. This desire is
manifested in a specific education

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