March 6, 2012, 5:16 pm
President Obama’s agenda for higher education includes the goal of having nearly all Americans receive at least one year of formal education beyond high school. For shorthand, he has often referred to this extra year as “college,” which has prompted controversy. College for all? He referred to this in his January 24 State of the Union address as part of “the basic American promise,” namely:
if you worked hard, you could do well enough to raise a family, own a home, send your kids to college, and put a little away for retirement.
What this means is a matter of some dispute. According to the New York Times, “almost 70 percent of high-school graduates in the United States enroll in college within two years of graduating.” Is that figure too low? When Obama addresses this issue he sometimes sounds like he is enunciating a general principle that all or nearly all should go to…
August 17, 2011, 2:00 am
I live and work in Princeton but spend part of each week in New York City, which occasions quite a few rides on the New York subway system. I often take the “1” train, which runs from the Staten Island Ferry in the south up to the Bronx. It thus strings together like pearls on a necklace stops at New York’s financial hub, the hipster precinct of the West Village, the commuter warren of Penn Station, the pulsing Times Square heart of Broadway tourism, and the full run of residential neighborhoods, from the Upper West Side world of Zabar’s sliced nova to the urban grunge of the Bronx. Humanity is here in all its Melville-ian variety—including varieties who might be persuaded that the ticket to a happier life is a little more education.
Subway cars are a rolling index of such aspirations. This morning I jotted down the marketing wit of colleges displayed on just one side of one…