author C.C.Cole's blog

Thursday, August 8, 2013

On the American Party Education

During my blog break, while glancing over an online newspaper, a book review caught my eye with the title “The Five Year Party.”  That translated to me the obvious, known to us University College graduates as “college.”  I like reading many genres, so I couldn’t pass this one up.

While I’m an adult with no kids, this doesn’t impact me directly, I’ve always been interested in the education of kids from all walks of life, particularly like I came from; poor, living on a gravel road, no telephone, violent father, no family car, and very few frills.   I find it annoying when the blogosphere describes as the “magic bullet” kid from lower middle class who will do whatever it takes to better his or her life.  Magic bullet?  To me, that’s “hard work.”

But the Five Year Party isn’t about hard work; actually it’s the opposite.   This book reviews details about kids entering universities called “Party Schools” where kids do little or no classwork, get good grades, and spend most of their time underage drinking or worse, just to graduate with a meaningless diploma and a huge debt burden with no job to pay for it.  Chapter after chapter, the author grinds into the hideous issues of the party schools, linking all of the ills of the teenage generation to riots, assaults, and even deaths of students.  From reading this book, the teachers do their best, the students do their worst (if you call partying worst), and the school administrators walk away with the cash. 

While this book has few nice things to say about American universities, the author seems to believe Ivy League or other small colleges give students better educations without the Five Year Party.   Really?  He can write what he wants, but in my “vast hard science educational background” as I’ve written about in the past, I’ve known plenty of brilliant people who graduated from “party schools.”

Do I think this book is worth reading?  If you’re sending your kids to the large university schools mentioned in this book, parents should know what can go on and understand the finances behind the academia.  “The Five Year Party” is presented as “in your face” but many things in college are in your face that I’d prefer not to remember. 

Was my undergraduate college mentioned?  Of course!  I knew it would be before I opened the book…

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