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Has Post-Secondary Education Become Just Another Institution?


A rising post-secondary population may not be the result of smarter applicants

By: Amarpreet Atwal, Staff Writer

University of Oregon

Via ozvoldjj

In preparation for the new school year, the Hamilton based post secondary institution McMaster University exceeded their base acceptance rate by 400 students. Although that number may not seem like a lot (average undergraduate population runs about 5300 students), the difference can be felt throughout the campus, particularly within the undergraduate student population. The question must be asked then; what do post secondary institutions put first, the students or the money?

Not to mention the fact that tuition is continuing to rise while job security and personal financial stability is becoming obsolete, the experience of university these days feels like anything but academic. Walking into a typical first year lecture can feel like walking into a convention center. It is becoming extremely challenging for students to receive the education they are promised on the beautifully detailed pamphlets. The more money that is poured into the institutions, the less academic post-secondary begins to feel.

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As the job market is beginning to shrink, post-secondary degrees seem to be the lifeline that many people are forced to take in order to receive jobs. With that in mind, over capacity should be expected and taken into account. It should not be the paying students that are coerced into over crowdedness and harder access to assistance on academic matters.  More time should be spent trying to give the student a better education instead of lowering acceptance requirements so more money can be made.

As students are becoming more aware of this issue, many have begun to have their voices heard. Various protests have occurred in which this very issue was the centerfold. With more students becoming aware of the facts, more anger and frustration has begun to build.

More time should be spent trying to give the student a better education instead of lowering acceptance requirements so more money can be made.

Post-secondary education is something that should be looked at as an opportunity one should be grateful to receive. That gratefulness is starting to be taken over by the very anger the top is putting onto their students. The idea of education being a “sentence” is something that Canadian youth should never have to feel.

Ontario universities have, in the 2011-2012 academic year, accepted an additional two thousand more students than average. That number is expected to grow more as times goes on. How big the classes will become and how the university heads expect to handle this growth is still unknown. But the one fact remains, the surplus of profit post- secondary institutions are receiving through this method doesn’t seem to be decreasing anytime soon.

  • Chet Chung

    Indeed, having an undergrad degree under your belt today isn’t as praiseworthy as having one 30 years ago was, and much of the degree’s depreciation can be attributed to the shift in view of a university as a company rather than academe.  Nonetheless, keep in mind that grade inflation in secondary schools is also a large culprit in the matter, as honour roll and 4.0 GPA high school students are a dime a dozen these days.  

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