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In the US, people are encouraged to go to college so that they can get higher-paying jobs. It's seen as a job training facility.

This discussion reveals one of the problems with our system of higher education: for some people it's one thing, for others it's something else.

Colleges are like companies that are trying to do two very different things at once: broad education and job training.

In the world of startups we know what to do when that happens: Choose one direction and go with it, stop trying to be all things to all people. Blended business models rarely work.

My guess is that something similar will eventually happen in education. Some institutions will specialize in getting you a paycheck and others will specialize in broader education.

I view purely academic coursework in the same category as other luxury goods: it's something some people find fun and exciting and if they want to pay for it, so be it, but society should not foot the bill.

Whereas practical "get a job" coursework I view as something that just about everybody needs and maybe there's a good argument for public subsidies or other policies that encourage it.

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