Thursday, April 22, 2010

Gainful employment in a recognized occupation

Apparently there is a unique requirement in Title IV for all for-profit post-secondary schools not designated as liberal arts. They must show that they prepare students for "gainful employment in a recognized occupation". If they don't, they can't get federal aid.

I can see the benefit of this rule as students are building up a mountain of debt while going through a program that doesn't create a steady income in the end.

But shouldn't the state university system be held to the same level of accountability? If it was, would it mean an end to useless majors that create a mountain of debt with no way to pay it off? Are their recognized occupations for gainful employment for the women's studies majors with well over $40,000 in student debt? I hired one to be my administrative assistant which I think fully negated the purpose of her major.

Somehow the academic world lost sight of the fact that they are supposed to prepare students to survive in the real world. If only they were held to the same high level of accountability that for-profits must achieve.