My valuable, cheap college degree

National School Choice Week is coming to a close, and while the focus is on K-12 what about the choice and options available in higher education? College costs have skyrocketed - in 2011 the average tuition for one year at a private university was almost $33,000.Ballooning student loan debt, an impending college bubble, and a falling return on the bachelor's degree all scream out for entrepreneurial solutions, but does one exist?

AEI President, Arthur Brooks writes in today's New York Times about a proposal gaining steam, the $10,000 college degree - the so called '10k- BA'. This idea is inching closer to becoming a reality by governors in Texas, Florida, and Wisconsin, but is not without its critics who view it as leading to 'diploma mills' diminishing the value of a higher education degree.

Brooks notes:
“I possess a 10k-BA, which I got way back in 1994. And it was the most important intellectual and career move I ever made. Did I earn a "worthless degree"? Hardly. My undergraduate years may have been bereft of frissons, but I wound up with a career as a tenured professor at Syracuse University, a traditional university. I am now the president of a Washington think tank....It is true that I am no Harvard Man. But I can say with full confidence that my 10k-BA is what made higher education possible for me, and it changed the course of my life. More people should have this opportunity, in a society that is suffering from falling economic and social mobility.”                                                                                                             

To arrange an interview with AEI President, Arthur Brooks, or an AEI education scholar please contact a member of the media team at mediaservices@aei.org or (202.862.5829).

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About the Author

 

Arthur C.
Brooks
  • Arthur C. Brooks is president of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He is also the Beth and Ravenel Curry Scholar in Free Enterprise at AEI.

    Immediately before joining AEI, Brooks was the Louis A. Bantle Professor of Business and Government at Syracuse University, where he taught economics and social entrepreneurship.

    Brooks is the author of 10 books and hundreds of articles on topics including the role of government, fairness, economic opportunity, happiness, and the morality of free enterprise. His latest book, “The Road to Freedom: How to Win the Fight for Free Enterprise” (2012) was a New York Times bestseller. Among his earlier books are “Gross National Happiness” (2008), “Social Entrepreneurship” (2008), and “Who Really Cares” (2006). Before pursuing his work in public policy, Brooks spent 12 years as a classical musician in the United States and Spain.

    Brooks is a frequent guest on national television and radio talk shows and has been published widely in publications including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post.

    Brooks has a Ph.D. and an M.Phil. in policy analysis from RAND Graduate School. He also holds an M.A. in economics from Florida Atlantic University and a B.A. in economics from Thomas Edison State College.


    Follow Arthur Brooks on Twitter.

  • Assistant Info

    Name: Danielle Duncan
    Phone: 202.419.5213
    Email: danielle.duncan@aei.org

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