Thursday, December 9, 2010

The education bubble in pictures

Thought I'd spend a few minutes looking at the website of my alma mater, Stephen F. Austin State University. A lot has changed in the past 20 years!

My crappy (that is being kind) old dorm was torn down a few years ago. This replaced it.
New racquetball courts.
Nice spas.
A modest rock climbing gym.
SFA is even offering massage services. Perfect for busy 19-year-olds to find center after a productive Saturday night of hard drinking.

Millions of taxpayer dollars, and not a cent is relevant to educating these students for professional careers. Go, Jacks, Go! Win, Jacks, Win!

(I would be lying if I said I wasn't jealous about what students have now.)


telescope_merc said...

I took a look at my College and it would seem they have added...

..some benches.
..some new walkways.
..a new landing for one of the dorms.
..some new atheltic fields.

My old school needs to get with the program! There was more stuff added to the campus while I was there than they have added since!

Anonymous said...

And you wonder why college tuition costs have sky rocketed.

The grounds at my son's school are manicured better than a golf course. Fountains everywhere, new brick walkways, not a blade of grass out of place.

It was nice, but then I realize we're paying multiple times what my education cost a generation ago even after factoring in inflation.

Caddy Wumpus said...

And yet they still got their asses handed to them by Villanova.

Anonymous said...

All the housing bubble web sites will eventually be replaced by student loan bubble web sites...junk loans for junk degrees at inflated prices..

Anonymous said...

It's not a bubble if the suckers can't default...

WhittyMike said...

I know Stephen F. Austin State University fairly well; I grew up in Lufkin and Houston, and we visited my grandmother who was a "dorm mother" at SFA when I was young.

It does look like SFA has come a long way!

EDH said...

All the extravagant spending makes sense, after all, Steve Austin was the Six Million Dollar Man.

Anonymous said...

How about this for a modest proposal? Institutions of higher learning which accept federal funding should not be allowed to utilize any of those funds on sports activities.

Somehow, education and sports have become inextricably intertwined, but in reality have no tangible relationship with each other. Universities in the rest of the world operate under no such illusions, and actually spend their funding on educational activities. Universities should not be country clubs, but almost every university in the US has become one.

Anonymous said...

(Who says college doesn't shape the character of a person?!)

Since the Feds now cover all student loans, they will also insert themselves into how colleges and universities are managed. After all, the [inflated] price of tuition and fees for luxurious accouterments is essentially waste to the purpose of education. So that waste will be winnowed out, and within a generation, those nice dorms will look no better than the housing projects of inner cities, and those rec facilities will be commandeered to allow the "under-privileged" poor children in the college communities to play in.

Enjoy it now, students! You'll be paying for it later!!! (Along with the rest of us, since that sort of temporary lifestyle will breed nothing less than the most petulant entitlement-oriented attitudes.

Anonymous said...

At my university, the spa-like gym was funded by "student fees." We are forced to pay "student fees" for just about everything we do.

Anonymous said...

Lou, back when you went to Stepen F, a big part of the attraction for male high school graduates had been the lopsided ratio of women to men there. A somewhat shy highschool pal of mine went there on that argument, and never lacked for dates of candidate girlfriends. Now that was good old fashioned, first rate, low cost entertainment, excercise and social skill development rolled together.

Fred said...

This is not a college, it is a mating ground...

NoVa Sideliner said...

Incredible. Wow, it's a resort. No wonder kids can't afford to pay for their own college these days.

You'll love this: A friend of mine made a poor deal with his kid. He said if she made some (high) set of grades, she could pick her university. And the one she just picked? Here are the numbers:

Tuition: $41,070
*Room: $5,260
*Meal Plan: $4,550
Total Charges: $50,880

That's per year, of course. With some extras on top.

My Dad would have beat my a** if I'd expected him to pay for something like that, good grades or not. (Asking for him to cover half might have got me beat for only half as long.)

It looks like my friend, who'd hoped to retire shortly, will now work 4 extra years to cover this cost, with every penny of his pay headed to the college. I do wonder if it can possibly be worth it.

Jean ValJean said...

Your schools are all a bunch of slackers.

NoVa Sideliner said...

Thanks, Jean. now I feel sick.

"Oh – and a 7-foot outdoor waterfall and wading pool, where students sunbathe and socialize. "That area's been so popular we had to buy more chaise longues," Ms. Baines said."

Chaise lounges, I guess she means. We had nice concrete benches. The new student union at the time had concrete benches with that smooth gravel finish. I thought that was plenty enough luxury.

Lou Minatti said...

NoVa, the reporter was too busy hanging out at the school longue to pay attention in his copy editing class.

Steve-O said...

Anon has a good point about athletics. I'm skeptical of claims that sports are net gain, financially. There's a ton of cash wasted on amenities supposedly for the general student body. But we all know it's to done to lure illiterate half-wit athletes.

Even putting money aside, sports are compromising the academic mission of schools when "student" athletes are caught cheating. Would we allow Coke machines on campus if they began randomly distributing answer keys for quizzes?

Anonymous said...

Actually, chaise longue is the correct spelling. Most people get this one wrong.