More college-educated waiters

On Community College Spotlight: The college-for-all campaign is a scam, writes Richard Vedder of the Center for College Affordability and Productivity.  Pushing marginal students to college has increased the supply of college-educated waiters and cashiers.

In a report on “Jobs, Jobs, Jobs” and education, Achieve concludes that jobs that used to be filled by high school graduates now require some college training.

About Joanne


  1. College-for-all is a scam driven by the lobbying of universities and affiliated groups. Without improving their product significantly, they have massively increased demand, driving their tuitions up. This rapid tuition inflation would have been a problem if it wasn’t for the associated push for loose lending by the feds.

  2. It’s not a problem if millions waste years and accumulate large debts in pursuit of degrees that don’t improve their earnings, just because the Feds guarantee it?  It might not be the schools’ problem, but it’s definitely a problem.

  3. I meant it wasn’t a problem for the universities. Without increased federal lending, the schools would have priced out a large portion of the populace, restricting their client base and lowering earnings.

    It is a problem for the rest of us, who have to pay for the misguided spending by our government and fellow citizens.

  4. This is absolutely true and one of the most important messages that true education reformers need to spread. Naive, foolish edu-reformers like Bill Gates and Michelle Rhee and Arne Duncan are so far off base with their hopes of 80% of America with bachelor’s degrees, it makes you wonder if they have any true knowledge of the economy and society.

    Only 29% of Americans have a bachelor’s degree – that is the highest it has ever been – and there is currently a lack of skilled labor but an excess of educated people. And businesses have only perpetuated this by encouraging workers to go back to school as a way to earn a pay raise. From bankers to managers to plumbers to marketers there are countless jobs that don’t require a degree. Yet, employers often use the BA/BS as the gatekeeper for who gets hired and who gets promoted.

    We could certainly use more associates degrees and skilled labor certificate holders. But the BA/BS is highly overrated for 1/2 the people that get one and 2/3 of the people who pursue one. Many will put in 2 of 4 years, never earn the degree, and then take a job as a banker or work their way up to retail in a career they never needed a BA for. And all they have to show is $20000 in debt for a degree they didn’t earn and don’t need.

    Challenge the k-16 system – it’s a sham.

  5. How about we challenge the sham known as K-16 education…college today has become more like high school at the freshmen and sophomore levels…(sigh)

  6. employers often use the BA/BS as the gatekeeper for who gets hired and who gets promoted.

    That’s because social promotion has made the HS diploma useless as a measure of either knowledge or ability.

    Randall Parker is among many calling for K-12 education to be accelerated for those capable of taking it.  Fewer years of seat-time means less money expended and less time before students become productive workers; it decreases the dependency ratio.

  7. Michael E. Lopez says:

    On another note: a college degree that isn’t directly applicable to a profession (i.e., not engineering or business) is a luxury item. It’s self-edification, and if you can afford it, then great: you’ll be a deeper, more thoughtful, interesting person.

    But it’s not any sort of investment and it’s foolish to think that it is.

    (Of course, what you intend to do with it can change whether it’s a luxury or an investment: philosophy degrees taken for the purpose of getting into law school are an investment. English degrees taken for the purpose of getting into high school teaching are an investment. But for reasons which aren’t entirely clear to me, I think it really matters what you are thinking when you enroll in your program, not what you do with it afterwards.)