Economic purposes

The reasons students choose to attend college have been steadily shifting over the course of the last half-century. Ira Harkavy and Matthew Hartley of the University of Pennsylvania write, “In 1900, barely 4 percent of all high school graduates attended college. By 1970, that number had grown more than tenfold (45 percent). The reasons for attending college began to shift. Economic purposes gained ascendancy. Data from an annual survey of more that 200,000 incoming freshman by the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at UCLA show that in 1969, 80 percent of incoming freshman believed that developing a meaningful philosophy of life was a very important goal; by 1996, that percentage diminished to 42 percent. In 1979, half of the students (49 percent) said they were attending college “to be able to make more money: by 1991, that figure had climbed to three-quarters (74.7 percent). Increasingly, the public came to view a college education as a ticket to securing a good job – a private rather than a good public good.”   Question: What does this passage suggest about your own goals for a college education? Explain how your goals would look to a college student in 1969, a student in 1991, and to Harkavy and Hartley.   Instructions Using Word or another computer program, please answer this question. Include specifics from the passage, and use examples from your reading or experience. Your short essay should be approximately 300-600 words. Take a few minutes to plan before you write.

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