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College Essay Examples | What Works and What Doesn't

Published on November 8, 2021 by Kirsten Courault . Revised on August 14, 2023.

One effective method for improving your college essay is to read example essays . Here are three sample essays, each with a bad and good version to help you improve your own essay.

Table of contents

Essay 1: sharing an identity or background through a montage, essay 2: overcoming a challenge, a sports injury narrative, essay 3: showing the influence of an important person or thing, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about college application essays.

This essay uses a montage structure to show snapshots of a student’s identity and background. The writer builds her essay around the theme of the five senses, sharing memories she associates with sight, sound, smell, touch, and taste.

In the weak rough draft, there is little connection between the individual anecdotes, and they do not robustly demonstrate the student’s qualities.

In the final version, the student uses an extended metaphor of a museum to create a strong connection among her stories, each showcasing a different part of her identity. She draws a specific personal insight from each memory and uses the stories to demonstrate her qualities and values.

How My Five Senses Record My Life

Throughout my life, I have kept a record of my life’s journey with my five senses. This collection of memories matters a great deal because I experience life every day through the lens of my identity.

“Chinese! Japanese!”

My classmate pulls one eye up and the other down.

“Look what my parents did to me!”

No matter how many times he repeats it, the other kids keep laughing. I focus my almond-shaped eyes on the ground, careful not to attract attention to my discomfort, anger, and shame. How could he say such a mean thing about me? What did I do to him? Joseph’s words would engrave themselves into my memory, making me question my appearance every time I saw my eyes in the mirror.

Soaking in overflowing bubble baths with Andrew Lloyd Webber belting from the boombox.

Listening to “Cell Block Tango” with my grandparents while eating filet mignon at a dine-in show in Ashland.

Singing “The Worst Pies in London” at a Korean karaoke club while laughing hysterically with my brother, who can do an eerily spot-on rendition of Sweeney Todd.

Taking car rides with Mom in the Toyota Sequoia as we compete to hit the high note in “Think of Me” from The Phantom of the Opera . Neither of us stands a chance!

The sweet scent of vegetables, Chinese noodles, and sushi wafts through the room as we sit around the table. My grandma presents a good-smelling mixture of international cuisine for our Thanksgiving feast. My favorite is the Chinese food that she cooks. Only the family prayer stands between me and the chance to indulge in these delicious morsels, comforting me with their familiar savory scents.

I rinse a faded plastic plate decorated by my younger sister at the Waterworks Art Center. I wear yellow rubber gloves to protect my hands at Mom’s insistence, but I can still feel the warm water that offers a bit of comfort as I finish the task at hand. The crusted casserole dish with stubborn remnants from my dad’s five-layer lasagna requires extra effort, so I fill it with Dawn and scalding water, setting it aside to soak. I actually don’t mind this daily chore.

I taste sweat on my upper lip as I fight to continue pedaling on a stationary bike. Ava’s next to me and tells me to go up a level. We’re biking buddies, dieting buddies, and Saturday morning carbo-load buddies. After the bike display hits 30 minutes, we do a five-minute cool down, drink Gatorade, and put our legs up to rest.

My five senses are always gathering new memories of my identity. I’m excited to expand my collection.

Word count: 455

College essay checklist

Topic and structure

  • I’ve selected a topic that’s meaningful to me.
  • My essay reveals something different from the rest of my application.
  • I have a clear and well-structured narrative.
  • I’ve concluded with an insight or a creative ending.

Writing style and tone

  • I’ve crafted an introduction containing vivid imagery or an intriguing hook that grabs the reader’s attention.
  • I’ve written my essay in a way that shows instead of tells.
  • I’ve used appropriate style and tone for a college essay.
  • I’ve used specific, vivid personal stories that would be hard to replicate.
  • I’ve demonstrated my positive traits and values in my essay.
  • My essay is focused on me, not another person or thing.
  • I’ve included self-reflection and insight in my essay.
  • I’ve respected the word count , remaining within 10% of the upper word limit.

Making Sense of My Identity

Welcome to The Rose Arimoto Museum. You are about to enter the “Making Sense of My Identity” collection. Allow me to guide you through select exhibits, carefully curated memories from Rose’s sensory experiences.

First, the Sight Exhibit.

“Chinese! Japanese!”

“Look what my parents did to me!”

No matter how many times he repeats it, the other kids keep laughing. I focus my almond-shaped eyes on the ground, careful not to attract attention as my lip trembles and palms sweat. Joseph couldn’t have known how his words would engrave themselves into my memory, making me question my appearance every time I saw my eyes in the mirror.

Ten years later, these same eyes now fixate on an InDesign layout sheet, searching for grammar errors while my friend Selena proofreads our feature piece on racial discrimination in our hometown. As we’re the school newspaper editors, our journalism teacher Ms. Riley allows us to stay until midnight to meet tomorrow’s deadline. She commends our work ethic, which for me is fueled by writing一my new weapon of choice.

Next, you’ll encounter the Sound Exhibit.

Still, the world is my Broadway as I find my voice on stage.

Just below, enter the Smell Exhibit.

While I help my Pau Pau prepare dinner, she divulges her recipe for cha siu bau, with its soft, pillowy white exterior hiding the fragrant filling of braised barbecue pork inside. The sweet scent of candied yams, fun see , and Spam musubi wafts through the room as we gather around our Thankgsiving feast. After our family prayer, we indulge in these delicious morsels until our bellies say stop. These savory scents of my family’s cultural heritage linger long after I’ve finished the last bite.

Next up, the Touch Exhibit.

I rinse a handmade mug that I had painstakingly molded and painted in ceramics class. I wear yellow rubber gloves to protect my hands at Mom’s insistence, but I can still feel the warm water that offers a bit of comfort as I finish the task at hand. The crusted casserole dish with stubborn remnants from my dad’s five-layer lasagna requires extra effort, so I fill it with Dawn and scalding water, setting it aside to soak. For a few fleeting moments, as I continue my nightly chore, the pressure of my weekend job, tomorrow’s calculus exam, and next week’s track meet are washed away.

Finally, we end with the Taste Exhibit.

My legs fight to keep pace with the stationary bike as the salty taste of sweat seeps into corners of my mouth. Ava challenges me to take it up a level. We always train together一even keeping each other accountable on our strict protein diet of chicken breasts, broccoli, and Muscle Milk. We occasionally splurge on Saturday mornings after interval training, relishing the decadence of everything bagels smeared with raspberry walnut cream cheese. But this is Wednesday, so I push myself. I know that once the digital display hits 30:00, we’ll allow our legs to relax into a five-minute cool down, followed by the fiery tang of Fruit Punch Gatorade to rehydrate.

Thank you for your attention. This completes our tour. I invite you to rejoin us for next fall’s College Experience collection, which will exhibit Rose’s continual search for identity and learning.

Word count: 649

  • I’ve crafted an essay introduction containing vivid imagery or an intriguing hook that grabs the reader’s attention.

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This essay uses a narrative structure to recount how a student overcame a challenge, specifically a sports injury. Since this topic is often overused, the essay requires vivid description, a memorable introduction and conclusion , and interesting insight.

The weak rough draft contains an interesting narrative, insight, and vivid imagery, but it has an overly formal tone that distracts the reader from the story. The student’s use of elaborate vocabulary in every sentence makes the essay sound inauthentic and stilted.

The final essay uses a more natural, conversational tone and chooses words that are vivid and specific without being pretentious. This allows the reader to focus on the narrative and appreciate the student’s unique insight.

One fateful evening some months ago, a defensive linebacker mauled me, his 212 pounds indisputably alighting upon my ankle. Ergo, an abhorrent cracking of calcified tissue. At first light the next day, I awoke cognizant of a new paradigm—one sans football—promulgated by a stabbing sensation that would continue to haunt me every morning of this semester.

It’s been an exceedingly taxing semester not being able to engage in football, but I am nonetheless excelling in school. That twist of fate never would have come to pass if I hadn’t broken my ankle. I still limp down the halls at school, but I’m feeling less maudlin these days. My friends don’t steer clear anymore, and I have a lot more of them. My teachers, emboldened by my newfound interest in learning, continually invite me to learn more and do my best. Football is still on hold, but I feel like I’m finally playing a game that matters.

Five months ago, right after my ill-fated injury, my friends’ demeanor became icy and remote, although I couldn’t fathom why. My teachers, in contrast, beckoned me close and invited me on a new learning journey. But despite their indubitably kind advances, even they recoiled when I drew near.

A few weeks later, I started to change my attitude vis-à-vis my newfound situation and determined to put my energy toward productive ends (i.e., homework). I wasn’t enamored with school. I never had been. Nevertheless, I didn’t abhor it either. I just preferred football.

My true turn of fate came when I started studying more and participating in class. I started to enjoy history class, and I grew interested in reading more. I discovered a volume of poems written by a fellow adventurer on the road of life, and I loved it. I ravenously devoured everything in the writer’s oeuvre .

As the weeks flitted past, I found myself spending my time with a group of people who were quite different from me. They participated in theater and played instruments in marching band. They raised their hands in class when the teacher posed a question. Because of their auspicious influence, I started raising my hand too. I am no longer vapid, and I now have something to say.

I am certain that your school would benefit from my miraculous academic transformation, and I entreat you to consider my application to your fine institution. Accepting me to your university would be an unequivocally righteous decision.

Word count: 408

  • I’ve chosen a college essay topic that’s meaningful to me.
  • I’ve respected the essay word count , remaining within 10% of the upper word limit.

As I step out of bed, the pain shoots through my foot and up my leg like it has every morning since “the game.” That night, a defensive linebacker tackled me, his 212 pounds landing decidedly on my ankle. I heard the sound before I felt it. The next morning, I awoke to a new reality—one without football—announced by a stabbing sensation that would continue to haunt me every morning of this semester.

My broken ankle broke my spirit.

My friends steered clear of me as I hobbled down the halls at school. My teachers tried to find the delicate balance between giving me space and offering me help. I was as unsure how to deal with myself as they were.

In time, I figured out how to redirect some of my frustration, anger, and pent-up energy toward my studies. I had never not liked school, but I had never really liked it either. In my mind, football practice was my real-life classroom, where I could learn all I ever needed to know.

Then there was that day in Mrs. Brady’s history class. We sang a ridiculous-sounding mnemonic song to memorize all the Chinese dynasties from Shang to Qing. I mumbled the words at first, but I got caught up in the middle of the laughter and began singing along. Starting that day, I began browsing YouTube videos about history, curious to learn more. I had started learning something new, and, to my surprise, I liked it.

With my afternoons free from burpees and scrimmages, I dared to crack open a few more of my books to see what was in them. That’s when my English poetry book, Paint Me Like I Am , caught my attention. It was full of poems written by students my age from WritersCorps. I couldn’t get enough.

I wasn’t the only one who was taken with the poems. Previously, I’d only been vaguely aware of Christina as one of the weird kids I avoided. Crammed in the margins of her high-top Chuck Taylors were scribbled lines of her own poetry and infinite doodles. Beyond her punk rock persona was a sensitive artist, puppy-lover, and environmental activist that a wide receiver like me would have never noticed before.

With Christina, I started making friends with people who once would have been invisible to me: drama geeks, teachers’ pets, band nerds. Most were college bound but not to play a sport. They were smart and talented, and they cared about people and politics and all sorts of issues that I hadn’t considered before. Strangely, they also seemed to care about me.

I still limp down the halls at school, but I don’t seem to mind as much these days. My friends don’t steer clear anymore, and I have a lot more of them. My teachers, excited by my newfound interest in learning, continually invite me to learn more and do my best. Football is still on hold, but I feel like I’m finally playing a game that matters.

My broken ankle broke my spirit. Then, it broke my ignorance.

Word count: 512

This essay uses a narrative structure to show how a pet positively influenced the student’s values and character.

In the weak draft, the student doesn’t focus on himself, instead delving into too much detail about his dog’s positive traits and his grandma’s illness. The essay’s structure is meandering, with tangents and details that don’t communicate any specific insight.

In the improved version, the student keeps the focus on himself, not his pet. He chooses the most relevant stories to demonstrate specific qualities, and the structure more clearly builds up to an insightful conclusion.

Man’s Best Friend

I desperately wanted a cat. I begged my parents for one, but once again, my sisters overruled me, so we drove up the Thompson Valley Canyon from Loveland to Estes Park to meet our newest family member. My sisters had already hatched their master plan, complete with a Finding Nemo blanket to entice the pups. The blanket was a hit with all of them, except for one—the one who walked over and sat in my lap. That was the day that Francisco became a Villanova.

Maybe I should say he was mine because I got stuck with all the chores. As expected, my dog-loving sisters were nowhere to be found! My mom was “extra” with all the doggy gear. Cisco even had to wear these silly little puppy shoes outside so that when he came back in, he wouldn’t get the carpets dirty. If it was raining, my mother insisted I dress Cisco in a ridiculous yellow raincoat, but, in my opinion, it was an unnecessary source of humiliation for poor Cisco. It didn’t take long for Cisco to decide that his outerwear could be used as toys in a game of Keep Away. As soon as I took off one of his shoes, he would run away with it, hiding under the bed where I couldn’t reach him. But, he seemed to appreciate his ensemble more when we had to walk through snowdrifts to get his job done.

When my abuela was dying from cancer, we went in the middle of the night to see her before she passed. I was sad and scared. But, my dad let me take Cisco in the car, so Cisco cuddled with me and made me feel much better. It’s like he could read my mind. Once we arrived at the hospital, the fluorescent lighting made the entire scene seem unreal, as if I was watching the scene unfold through someone else’s eyes. My grandma lay calmly on her bed, smiling at us even through her last moments of pain. I disliked seeing the tubes and machines hooked up to her. It was unnatural to see her like this一it was so unlike the way I usually saw her beautiful in her flowery dress, whistling a Billie Holiday tune and baking snickerdoodle cookies in the kitchen. The hospital didn’t usually allow dogs, but they made a special exception to respect my grandma’s last wishes that the whole family be together. Cisco remained at the foot of the bed, intently watching abuela with a silence that seemed more effective at communicating comfort and compassion than the rest of us who attempted to offer up words of comfort that just seemed hollow and insincere. It was then that I truly appreciated Cisco’s empathy for others.

As I accompanied my dad to pick up our dry cleaner’s from Ms. Chapman, a family friend asked, “How’s Cisco?” before even asking about my sisters or me. Cisco is the Villanova family mascot, a Goldendoodle better recognized by strangers throughout Loveland than the individual members of my family.

On our summer trip to Boyd Lake State Park, we stayed at the Cottonwood campground for a breathtaking view of the lake. Cisco was allowed to come, but we had to keep him on a leash at all times. After a satisfying meal of fish, our entire family walked along the beach. Cisco and I led the way while my mom and sisters shuffled behind. Cisco always stopped and refused to move, looking back to make sure the others were still following. Once satisfied that everyone was together, he would turn back around and continue prancing with his golden boy curly locks waving in the chilly wind.

On the beach, Cisco “accidentally” got let off his leash and went running maniacally around the sand, unfettered and free. His pure joy as he raced through the sand made me forget about my AP Chem exam or my student council responsibilities. He brings a smile not only to my family members but everyone around him.

Cisco won’t live forever, but without words, he has impressed upon me life lessons of responsibility, compassion, loyalty, and joy. I can’t imagine life without him.

Word count: 701

I quickly figured out that as “the chosen one,” I had been enlisted by Cisco to oversee all aspects of his “business.” I learned to put on Cisco’s doggie shoes to keep the carpet clean before taking him out一no matter the weather. Soon after, Cisco decided that his shoes could be used as toys in a game of Keep Away. As soon as I removed one of his shoes, he would run away with it, hiding under the bed where I couldn’t reach him. But, he seemed to appreciate his footwear more after I’d gear him up and we’d tread through the snow for his daily walks.

One morning, it was 7:15 a.m., and Alejandro was late again to pick me up. “Cisco, you don’t think he overslept again, do you?” Cisco barked, as if saying, “Of course he did!” A text message would never do, so I called his dad, even if it was going to get him in trouble. There was no use in both of us getting another tardy during our first-period class, especially since I was ready on time after taking Cisco for his morning outing. Alejandro was mad at me but not too much. He knew I had helped him out, even if he had to endure his dad’s lecture on punctuality.

Another early morning, I heard my sister yell, “Mom! Where are my good ballet flats? I can’t find them anywhere!” I hesitated and then confessed, “I moved them.” She shrieked at me in disbelief, but I continued, “I put them in your closet, so Cisco wouldn’t chew them up.” More disbelief. However, this time, there was silence instead of shrieking.

Last spring, Cisco and I were fast asleep when the phone rang at midnight. Abuela would not make it through the night after a long year of chemo, but she was in Pueblo, almost three hours away. Sitting next to me for that long car ride on I-25 in pitch-black darkness, Cisco knew exactly what I needed and snuggled right next to me as I petted his coat in a rhythm while tears streamed down my face. The hospital didn’t usually allow dogs, but they made a special exception to respect my grandma’s last wishes that the whole family be together. Cisco remained sitting at the foot of the hospital bed, intently watching abuela with a silence that communicated more comfort than our hollow words. Since then, whenever I sense someone is upset, I sit in silence with them or listen to their words, just like Cisco did.

The other day, one of my friends told me, “You’re a strange one, Josue. You’re not like everybody else but in a good way.” I didn’t know what he meant at first. “You know, you’re super responsible and grown-up. You look out for us instead of yourself. Nobody else does that.” I was a bit surprised because I wasn’t trying to do anything different. I was just being me. But then I realized who had taught me: a fluffy little puppy who I had wished was a cat! I didn’t choose Cisco, but he certainly chose me and, unexpectedly, became my teacher, mentor, and friend.

Word count: 617

If you want to know more about academic writing , effective communication , or parts of speech , make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples.

Academic writing

  • Writing process
  • Transition words
  • Passive voice
  • Paraphrasing


  • How to end an email
  • Ms, mrs, miss
  • How to start an email
  • I hope this email finds you well
  • Hope you are doing well

 Parts of speech

  • Personal pronouns
  • Conjunctions

A standout college essay has several key ingredients:

  • A unique, personally meaningful topic
  • A memorable introduction with vivid imagery or an intriguing hook
  • Specific stories and language that show instead of telling
  • Vulnerability that’s authentic but not aimed at soliciting sympathy
  • Clear writing in an appropriate style and tone
  • A conclusion that offers deep insight or a creative ending

There are no set rules for how to structure a college application essay , but these are two common structures that work:

  • A montage structure, a series of vignettes with a common theme.
  • A narrative structure, a single story that shows your personal growth or how you overcame a challenge.

Avoid the five-paragraph essay structure that you learned in high school.

Though admissions officers are interested in hearing your story, they’re also interested in how you tell it. An exceptionally written essay will differentiate you from other applicants, meaning that admissions officers will spend more time reading it.

You can use literary devices to catch your reader’s attention and enrich your storytelling; however, focus on using just a few devices well, rather than trying to use as many as possible.

Most importantly, your essay should be about you , not another person or thing. An insightful college admissions essay requires deep self-reflection, authenticity, and a balance between confidence and vulnerability.

Your essay shouldn’t be a résumé of your experiences but instead should tell a story that demonstrates your most important values and qualities.

When revising your college essay , first check for big-picture issues regarding message, flow, tone, style , and clarity. Then, focus on eliminating grammar and punctuation errors.

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The immense growth of technology over the past couple of decades has changed the way we live life in every aspect. Because of the growth in technology it wasn’t long before technology reached new levels in the education system. The education system has been consistent for many years however that has recently changed with a new group of technology entrepreneurs who introduced a new way of teaching… These entrepreneurs had a vision in which students had a broader option of […]

Sweeping a Problem is Bound to Explode: Leon Botstein’s Article Related to High School

Life is constantly changing, making many beliefs appear to both the believers and non-believers. Leon Botstein, in his article "Let Teenagers Try Adulthood", shares the perspective of a believer. His article discusses graduating school at the age of sixteen, school shootings, and what it feels like to be an outsider in an environment full of insiders. Botstein is partially correct about graduating high school at the age of sixteen; however, his reasoning is insufficient. Botstein suggests that it would be […]

Importance of Financial Education in High School

"Over 50% of Americans have credit cards and the latest stats show that credit card debt stands at $7,050 per average household, with an average of 17%," (Jez Davidson, 2016). Many people in this nation lack proper financial education. As a result, this negatively impacts unemployment rates, poverty, and GDP. Financial education is an essential skill that must be taught, as it can't be learned otherwise. It is used in everyday life and is a necessary skill for financial independence. […]

Access to Tools that Expanding Educational Background

Education is the most important and fundamental aspect of a person’s life. Education is also forever changing and evolving to better suit the needs of those in school and prepare them for life, however that looks during that time period. One thing that will almost always stay the same is that schooling requires money; whether that be from the families, state, or someone that wants to help that is able. Many people throughout the years have felt it was their […]

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Importance Of Higher Education In 21st Century Essay Example

In the 21st century, a college education is crucial for success. In fact, those with a bachelor’s degree or higher have consistently been found to be more successful than those without one. It is critical that all students understand this and make it their goal to pursue an education at any level they can manage. This sample will explore some of the benefits of why a college degree matters in today’s world as well as provide tips on how to plan for your future needs and goals.

Essay Example On Importance Of Higher Education In 21st Century In The USA

  • Thesis Statement – Importance Of Higher Education Essay
  • Introduction – Importance Of Higher Education Essay
  • Benefits Of Higher Education
  • Conclusion – Importance Of Higher Education Essay
Thesis Statement – Importance Of Higher Education Essay Higher education is extremely important in our modern-day world to succeed financially and socially. Introduction – Importance Of Higher Education Essay It’s no secret that the current state of the economy is not very promising for most people who are entering college. Many students worry about their future and do not know if it will be possible to find a job after they get out of college or even land an internship with any potential employers at all. Along with this high level of anxiety, students must also take into consideration the rising cost of tuition fees at institutions across the country which makes getting an education more expensive than ever before. A wise investment many individuals choose to make is acquiring a college degree, but there is much more to higher education than just finding employment upon graduating. It can actually benefit one in numerous ways such as improving health conditions and raising living standards among others. Consult Essay Writing Expert & Get Premium Essay Topics Order Now Main Body – Importance Of Higher Education Essay Benefits Of  Higher Education Before this, we discussed Higher education so let’s take a look at the benefits. Below you will get some important points of higher education after reading that you will get the importance of higher education. Make More Money When you will complete your higher education you will have a Master’s degree in your hand. The degree is the symbol that you have vast knowledge in your field. You will get a higher job position in top companies and you will experience that you are earning more money in comparison with your friends who have not completed higher education in the same field. Professionalism Employers always hire professionals. Everyone wants to become successful personally and professionally but Professionalism doesn’t come with a degree your behavior and other skills make you professional So pursue the related field for your higher education then You will become familiar with the working atmosphere of the industries related to your field. You Will Learn To Solve Problems Completing higher education is not a simple task. You have to face various problems during your studies and it will polish your skills and talent. It makes you able how to solve problems quickly? You will learn the analytical and critical learning approach here. Promotions People who have completed master’s degrees got promoted quickly in comparison with other employees without higher education. Advantage during interviews Employers welcome scholars having good knowledge and high degree. A Master’s degree is a symbol that a person has excellent knowledge; he/she will get an extra advantage during interviews over the people with a bachelor’s degree. Deep knowledge Higher education offers you complete knowledge. Professors and teachers will teach you all the basics related to your subjects. You will get both theoretical and practical knowledge. Lifestyle It will change your complete lifestyle. During higher education, you will get a chance to involve in different-different programs and functions. You will learn various things that will enhance your lifestyle. You will become more modern than before. Greater Skills You will gain more skills from college and universities. There are various tasks organized by the college during your studies including time management, intellectual programs, etc. You will get a chance to participate in various extracurricular programs related to sports, culture, etc. Open Atmosphere if you have taken admission in higher education then you will get a chance to meet new people belong to different cultures and communities. You will get the freedom to live your life as you wanted to live. Live your dreams The college will offer you a chance to live your dreams. You will get a chance to prove yourself in other activities like sports You can take a position in the college and university team and prove your talent at a great platform. It can be a turning point in your life; you can get a chance to be selected in the national team of your country or state based on your performance. If you are a good writer, the singer then also you can show your talent to others by participating in various university-level completions. One Time Investment If you are thinking about the tuition fee and another course fee then it’s a one-time investment. You can get loans from banks and other financial institutes for higher studies. Once you will complete your higher education you will definitely get a high salary and soon you will realize that you have paid your loans in a short period of time. Have fun Apart from your studies, you will get a chance to relax. New people and new groups will create a happy atmosphere. Various Options For Higher Education if you have no time to attend the classes, you have an option of distance learning or online learning. You can take admission in the online higher education program. More Opportunities Completing your higher education will open more doors. You can get a job in any sector related to your area of interest. Suppose you have completed your higher education in Information technology then you can get a job as a web designer, web developer, and software engineer and even you can apply for the post of testing engineer. But, a person who has completed a computer course in testing has no knowledge about the development process and will get limited job opportunities. Network  Higher education will also increase your network. You will make new friends and build new contacts. It’s a life and one can need help from anyone at any time. Hire an Essay Writer to Write your Complete Essay on Time Order Now Conclusion – Importance Of Higher Education Essay Higher education is important because it can have many benefits for all students. They improve individual’s physical health, give them access to better job opportunities and help countries gain international prominence. By having more college graduates in the workforce there are high chances of improving living conditions among other things. Overall, this shows why higher education is important in today’s society because it helps people in many different ways that will benefit them for years to come. Consult with USA Essay Writers to Write your College Essay Order Now

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Higher Education Essays

Higher education in asian countries.

Treating all children similar sounds great, yet it is problematic. Think about your very own children. “Over the last 20 years, higher education systems across Asia have experienced a sharply increased demand for access” (ADB). How viable would you think a school where every one of the teachers had social and racial foundations not quite the same as you? Where classmates who comprehended your children’s’ experience and tradition were few? Where your kids faced occurrences of misconception and racism? Where […]

Higher Education in the World of Public-Private Partnership

Recap of Interview When looking into student affairs professionals to interview, I came across an area I had never even thought about being a part of the higher education community. Jamie Mancine introduced me into the world of public-private partnerships (P3s). What intrigued me about the P3s were their backgrounds of being highly affiliated with a university and the fact that Mancine’s company had 100% of their communities located on-campus with active university participation. Mancine spoke a lot about working […]

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Should the U.S. Provide Free Tuition for Public College Students who Maintain Good Grades? – Higher Education

Getting a college degree is not only to get a good job, education makes life better and allows you to think smarter. Also, getting an education changes a whole person by taking more advantages, and having more opportunities. Nowadays, the demand of higher education has increased. After 20th century, we have improved our way of living because most of our people got educated. Graduated students have a greater chance to get a better job than the once without graduated. Education […]

Women in Higher Education

In 1795 to 1800 women trying to pursue a higher education was not tolerated. This was far-fetched because women were supposed to be taking care the of home; cooking and cleaning not trying to elevate their educational levels. The first is women to attend college as stated in Thelin (2011) women began in seminary schools that taught the fundamentals of how to be a good wife, mother, and to be socially acceptable; in addition, women were only allowed to work […]

Technology and Higher Education 

Technology has become the subject of discussions these days, and why not, no one can deny its importance. It is inevitable in almost everything we do in our daily life. With the growth and advancements in new tools, it is expected that all fields of life should quickly adapt themselves according to the requirements of evolving era. Same is the case with higher education institutions. Higher education institutions are deeply intertwined with and linked to societies they serve. Higher education […]

Women in Higher Education in Latin American

The United States population of women in higher education grows, just as in some areas in Latin America and the Caribbean. However, there is still inequality between men and women in higher education in Latin American and the Caribbean. In rural areas, education seems to be less beneficial than in the urban areas. Yet girls in poor communities still have more obstacles than boys in similar backgrounds because of inheritance laws and differences in wage. The accumulated wealth from asset […]

California Public Higher Education Caucus

Salud Carbajal is the Representative of the 24th district in California. He is a democrat that is proudly representing the Hispanic community. Salud Carbajal is a strong leader bringing awareness to the less fortunate and in need by promoting higher education, better healthcare, and programs for at risk youth. Carbajal was born on November 18, 1964 in Moroleon, Mexico. He later immigrated from Mexico to Arizona, then from there moved to Oxnard. While living in Arizona he worked along with […]

Affirmative Action in Higher Education

Affirmative action in higher education has been a very controversial topic in the American education system for several years. Many people around the world have constructed their own ideal definition of what affirmative action means to them, leading others to have a confused misconception of what the true meaning of affirmative action is. Affirmative action can be acknowledged as a form of “positive discrimination”. It is a policy that was created in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy to favor […]

Sustainability of Indian Higher Education

Abstract Education is very important factor for development of a country.It is one of the significant factor to build a nation for sustainable growth of economy. Therefore it should be addressed appropriately to the changing needs of national and international scenario. The present paper attempts to focus on overall performance of higher education system in India. As per 2011 census,India, today is a youthful country having population less than 30 years. This demographic dividend has important competitive factor. The large […]

Organizational Theory in Higher Education

This was a very interesting article. My first reaction to the article title, was that this article would be all about organizational identity and what it was. Not the case. My second reaction to the article when they stated on page 103 in the abstract that, “universities have been found to be quite stable” (Bjorn, 2017), was how stable are they? This was thought provoking. If the universities are that stable, then why are the researchers trying to understand the […]

Diversity & Multiculturalism in Higher Education

Critical Reflective Essay The problem, challenges, or issues related to diversity in higher education ranges from ethnic and cultural differences, racism, gender discrimination, physical and mental disabilities, sexual orientation, political beliefs, religious beliefs, age, social-economic status and much more. Diversity and multiculturalism are two concepts that I have always used interchangeably while on the contrary, depicts different meanings. To me, diversity means the provision of equal opportunities for everyone regardless of their skin color, race, gender, national origin, and religion. […]

Physical Education in Higher Education

Abstract The purpose of this research paper is to discuss the importance of having physical education in higher education for students to be successful by having a mandatory PE courses. Physical education is a requirement of most K-12 programs, but by the time a student enters their first year of college it is no longer required. Students are more worried about grades, and the courses the students need to graduate, but the students forget their own health issues and the […]

India’s Reservation Policy in Higher Education Institutions

India’s Reservation Policy in Higher Education Institutions The term “Reservation” has been doing the rounds within the Indian media circuit of late owing to the government decision to implement 27% quota for the OBCs in the educational institutions of higher learning. Time has come to study the significance of this matter and see its consequences on the country in the future. When our country achieved independence, a large section of the society was leading a miserable life. They had been exploited […]

Court Cases for Equal Higher Education

Growing up as an Asian American, I was always told to get into college and get a degree. My mother always emphasized that getting into a college is the only way to be successful, it was the only way to get a good job and have a better future. In a way, I believe that is true, because on average those who graduated from college gets paid more than those who didn’t. Those who get a degree get to have […]

Empowering Jordanian Women as Leaders in Higher Education

Increasing numbers of women have gained access to universities and the college teaching profession worldwide. However, women continue to be underrepresented in academic, research and leadership positions. Empowerment of academic women to become leaders in Higher Education (HE) means giving them the power to think, the chance to act freely, a sense of self-confidence, ability to believe in their capability to make required changes as equal to male leaders in higher education. Empowerment of women as leaders in Higher Education […]

Education and Work Experience

There is no doubt that both higher education and work experience are important parts of education for employability. Many students want to go university and graduate with a degree which can fill their resume. However I believe that the work experience has better efficiency than the degree, particularly in terms of employment activity. First of all, work experience during higher education, and in particular that related to study, has a positive effect on employment activity because experience is what the […]

Argumentative Essay “College is not Worth It”

One would say that college is a way to build a future, a way to open new doors of opportunity for yourself. Although that may be the case, it certainly does not weigh up to the time and money spent on it. This essay will cover why I believe College isn’t Worth the Investment. It wasn’t always extremely hard and expensive to go to college or university, that is until nowadays where college has become a serious and dangerous investment. […]

What Aspects should be Considered when Choosing Traditional or Online Education for Adult Students?

When we discuss ‘students’ and ‘learners’ we automatically assume to be talking about the average adolescent, backpacks tightly strapped to both shoulders, lunchbox in hand, ready to start another hard day of education and awkward social interactions at the local public school. However, what about the adults who have put a hiatus on their education for a few years, and then decide to pick it back up. Who is the adult learner? Adult learners are a diverse group,”usually 25 and […]

Formal and Non Formal Education

Education in the largest sense is any act or experience that has a formative effect on the mind,character or physical ability of an individual. In its technical sense, education is the process by which society deliberately transmits its accumulated knowledge, skills and values from one generation to another. Etymologically, the word education is derived from educare (Latin) “bring up”, which is related toeducere “bring out”, “bring forth what is within”, “bring out potential” and ducere, “to lead”. 1] Teachers in educational institutions direct the education of students and might draw on manysubjects, including reading, writing, mathematics, science and history. This process […]

The Banking Concept of Education

Paolo Freire, a Brazilian radical educator talks about the oppression students face in the traditional method of learning, The Banking Concept of Education. According to him in this method of teaching “the contents, whether values or empirical dimensions of reality, tend, in the process of being narrated, to become lifeless and petrified. ” He accuses education to be suffering from “narration sickness” where students learn the content distancing it from reality in a very mechanical way. Therefore he proposes a […]

The Future of Technology and Education

The future of technology and education is all up to speculation but saying that technology is being innovated every day. Even while I was in high school tech was being introduced in multiple ways. In the beginning of high school, we started getting flat screen televisions and our teachers where using them as white boards. By the time I was a senior they already gave most students in the district iPads to use for in class activities and take-home projects. […]

An Argument against Eliminating the Humanities from Educational Systems in Favor of STEM Education

The age old expression “there are constantly 2 sides to a story” is an extremely vital saying when put on education. Liberal Arts colleges have transformed and also adjusted this claiming to fit their design of education and learning. The establishments of higher knowing frequently have pupils enroll that talk about a comparable idea, but from different disciplines. This is unbelievably crucial to a holistic education and learning. However, the recent push in the direction of STEM education and learning […]

The Mental Health of High School Students

Teenagers across the world struggle with fitting in and tend to care what other people think of them. They want to be independent, but then again they do not want to be alone. This causes teenagers to feel stressed out, and their lives to be an instant headache. More times than none, almost all teenagers want to be accepted and get along with other teenagers. As teenagers get older, friendships become more meaningful and important. When they are not accepted […]

Issues Affecting Hispanic American Students in their Academics

Research Problem The research aims to understand the factors that lead to academic performance among the Hispanic population. The Hispanic population in the United States has been increasing over the past two decades. However, though the population has grown significantly, the college and high school graduation rates of Hispanics are still the lowest compared to other races. Thus, to fulfill the American Graduation Initiative, it is crucial to understand factors that result in academic achievement for these people. Purpose of […]

The Pressures of being a Single Mother

What are single mothers? What are the pressures women face being the only parent daily? How can single mothers utilize resources? A single mother is one who becomes a victim to society. Being a Single mother is not necessarily due to a man’s abandonment, it is also in cases when the father passes away or is incarcerated. It is not easy being a single mother. Making a child’s life as good as possible is a mother’s goal. The pressures of […]

Why is a High School Diploma Important

The quantity of advantages related with a high school diploma is incomprehensible. Presently you can investigate the always developing open positions with a high school diploma or GED. The insights that help ‘why you ought to get a high school diploma’ incorporate the way that today in excess of a little over half of the open positions overall interest gifted work. This makes a high school diploma compulsory to find a way into the gifted workforce. Practically all businesses incline […]

Why is Critical Thinking Important in Daily Educational Life

Critical thinking is an important key component for one’s education or career, such as breathing is essential to living. It is used for every type of position or daily situations that can help prepare an individual to think for themselves and have a different outlook on a situation. Pre-university education should have major improvements in their school because their programs do not sufficiently equip students to have critical thoughts and to prepare them for college. Schools across our nation could […]

“A Talk to Teachers” of James Baldwin (Rhetorical Analysis)

In ¨A Talk to Teachers¨, James Baldwin describes 1963 as ‘very dangerous.’ James Baldwin’s main point is to make known how educators added to racism in society during 1963. At the time that Baldwin wrote, ¨A talk to Teachers¨, the society was ¨very dangerous” because that’s when the Civil rights movement was at its peak. Baldwin continuously pointed out that teachers can change the discrimination view on African-Americans by teaching them from a young age about racism and their history. […]

Issue of Cheating in Schools and Colleges

 Parties, sleeping late and prepared meals. College life seems picturesque. However, life as a college student is not as easy as it seems. At most rigorous colleges and universities in the United States, suicide rates have been on the rise in the last 20 years. The national suicide rate among 15 to 24 year olds has “increased modestly but steadily since 2007: from 9.6 death per 100,000 to 11.1, in 2013” (Scelfo). Some institutions like Harvard, Duke, and the University […]

Stephen Hawking Biography: Living with an Incurable Disease

In 1963, Stephen Hawking is an ordinary physical science PhD understudy at Cambridge, who appreciates gatherings, paddling, and spending time with his companion Bryan. Stephen meets dialects understudy Jane at a party. The two are drawn to one another and they go to a May Ball. Stephen beats his timidity and hits the dance floor with Jane. Tragically, one morning he experiences an awful fall nearby. Specialists look at him and establish that he has engine neuron sickness. They disclose […]

Essays on Higher Education

Essays On Higher Education

Have no time? Stuck with ideas? We have collected a lot of interesting and useful Higher Education essay topics for you in one place to help you quickly and accurately complete your college assignment! Check out our essay examples on Higher Education and you will surely find something to your liking!

INTRODUCTION The importance of work placement as a part of higher education can not be disputed. A number of studies ( Bennett, Dunne & Carre, 2000; Arnold, Loan-Clarke, Harrington & Hart, 1999) have proved that skills gained at work placements are very important and sought after by employers. Students with work placement experience become more […]

What does the word contentment really mean? Is it the satisfaction with oneself or an environment? Is it the happiness you feel once you have reached a certain stage in your life? We all have a threshold at which we begin to experience a level contentment. The environment where I have achieved contentment has different […]

The financial allocation in the 1 lath five year plan is almost five times that in the tenth five year plan and the Prime Minister has rightly called the eleventh Lana an ‘education plan’. L With an aim to improve the higher education system in India, the government introduced three bills in the Look Saba […]

This paper explores tendencies in higher instruction in footings of Max Weber’s theory of rationalisation. It is Weber’s contention that there are four basic incentives for human behaviour. Peoples are motivated by usage or tradition. by emotions. by spiritual or ethical values. and by rational end oriented behaviour ( which Weber calls “zweckrational” ) . […]

Some people might consider schools to be safe. Some people think that teachers are guardians –watchful protectors– that would let no harm come to any individual. Children are kept off the streets, out of trouble and far from experimentation and curiosity’s grasp when they attend school instead of wandering about the streets aimlessly. The cruel […]

This database has been created for The Connaught School, located in Aldershot, Hampshire. Its purpose is to serve all staff members by containing GCSE scores from the 2007 exams along with a compilation of subject and personal information. The school was formerly called Heron Wood and has been in operation for over thirty years. The […]

The Schoolboy is a poem written by William Blake from songs of experience. The poem narrates a young boy’s perception of school and how he believes that children in school are like in prison and they should be let out in nature to be free and be happy while their childhood lasts. History boys however, […]

This Is my first time posting my essay on here but I need help please. I have never written a narrative essay so need to know If this Is what It Is supposed to look like? My Inspiration My father taught me lots of lessons in life since I was young, but the one that […]

“The Philippines country case study” by Rhona B. Caoli-Rodriguez (2007) examines the major policy reforms and programs undertaken by the Philippine government to achieve the Education for All (EFA) 2015 Goals. The study covers the period from 2000, when the WEF was held in Dakar, to the present. To provide a background for further discussions, […]

Higher Education Institutions are frequently the focus of attention since they represent valuable resources for any country. They produce the educated men and women that often become the social, political, technological, economic, and religious leaders of the country. Because of the changes that have occurred in the restructuring of the education system as well s […]

Needless to say that a university degree often helps a person achieve his goal with more ease. However, do we attend some university or college just in pursuit of a degree? Education nevertheless is beneficial in such aspects of life as personal and social. Apart from the above education is the only possession that cannot […]

A brief analysis of the Higher Education standard in Ancient India reveals its ancient origin. In that era, education was intricately linked to religion and fueled by teachers’ enthusiasm, while students perceived it as a means to cultivate their character and enhance their role as members of society. However, it is crucial to recognize that […]

This study utilizes data from the National Educational Longitudinal Study to examine the differences in educational attainment between youth residing in rural and metropolitan areas. In order to address selection bias caused by disparities in family and student backgrounds between rural and urban areas, statistical models with propensity score matching methods are employed. The findings […]

1.0 Introduction The transition towards a knowledge-based economy leads to a growing demand for individuals to improve themselves by pursuing higher education. As a result, there is a rapid increase in the demand for tertiary education. However, public universities in Malaysia are unable to accommodate this increased demand adequately. Authorities in Malaysia have divided the […]

Overview of the Education System The education system in the United States is made up of both private and public schools. Public schools are overseen by elected school boards, which set curricula, policies, and budgets for school districts. These boards have authority over school districts. Conversely, state government is responsible for establishing education standards and […]

According to “Individualized Education Programs (IEPs)”, 2016, Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) are legal and written documents that outline education programs created specifically for children with special needs. These programs clearly define the child’s needs, the school services provided, and the methods used to track progress. In a scenario where IEP goals for a child with […]

Inclusive curriculum remains a top priority for the school management to ensure that all students regardless their special needs receive equal and quality education for their development. To achieve educational goals for teaching and learning while at the same time ensuring that all areas of diversity are included is very challenging. While advocating for inclusion […]

The worthiness of advertising or marketing educational services drew me to this topic of research. Marketing the higher education of learning to get customers or the student to learn in an institution is questionable to whether the organization is business oriented or educational oriented. The key issued I was interested in comprehending out of this […]

Education, equity, and empowerment are aiming at lifting the ego of the women in the society. Ladies around the world are mostly despised due to their inability to perform in numerous activities that men are involved. Through the project, I have used different methodologies to achieve goals of the research. Talking to the activists, reading […]

Introduction Liberal education emerges as one of the education approaches that is aimed at nurturing, developing and helping the students in the management of changes in the environment. The students are presented with the opportunities of gaining knowledge and dealing with complexities in the process of learning such as further research in different fields of […]

There are many new and revolutionary ways of marketing a product or service to consumers. The advent of the internet and web 2. 0 has allowed for millions of consumers to be reached easier than ever before.The social aspect of the internet is now attracting people who wouldn’t otherwise have used the internet on a […]

As a result of the fierce competition in the employment market, many people choose to pursue a master’s degree after finishing their undergraduate studies. Although I have aspired to obtain a master’s degree for some time, changes in the job market have revealed that without this advanced degree, I may not be desirable to prospective […]

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The history of HBCUs in America

Zach Hubert came out of slavery with an adage that he would pass on to his children, and his children's children, and their children down the line. "Get your education," he would always say to them when his family gathered together in later years. "It's the one thing they can't take away from you."

August 20, 2015 | by Samara Freemark

The history of HBCUs in America

This essay is part of the larger radio documentary The Living Legacy: Black Colleges in the 21st Century , which you can listen to in its entirety on this website or on our podcast feed ( iTunes ).

Zach Hubert came out of slavery with an adage that he would pass on to his children, and his children’s children, and their children down the line.

“Get your education,” he would always say to them when his family gathered together in later years. “It’s the one thing they can’t take away from you.”


Zach grew up a slave on the Hubert plantation in Georgia’s Warren County. Most slaves on the plantation were forbidden to have books, but Zach was the same age as the plantation owner’s son, and the boy taught Zach how to read.

When freedom came to Georgia, Zach and his wife rented a farm and worked until they saved enough money to buy some land. They had 12 children, seven boys and five girls, and Zach set up a school and hired a teacher to educate them.

When they came of age, those children did something that would have been unthinkable for Zach and his peers.

They went to college.


A paltry handful of traditionally white colleges accepted black applicants in the first part of the 19th century. And three colleges, two in Pennsylvania and one in Ohio, educated mostly black students in the mid-1800s.

But after the Civil War, African American education blossomed. Black ministers and white philanthropists established schools all across the South to educate freed slaves. These schools, more than 100 of which are still open today, became known as historically black colleges and universities, or HBCUs.

“They started in church basements, they started in old schoolhouses, they started in people’s homes,” says Marybeth Gasman, a historian at the University of Pennsylvania who studies HBCUs. “[Former slaves] were hungry for learning … because of course, education had been kept from them.”

Initially, many schools were designed to provide just basic primary and secondary education.

“The prospect was for there to be more teachers, preachers and farmers,” says Jarrett Carter, an HBCU graduate and journalist, who covers black colleges on his website HBCU Digest. “In the years since their establishment, you saw schools that evolved by their own hard work to now you can go be an engineer, a physician, a lawyer, a legislator, a college president.”

In the 1890s the second Morrill Land-Grant Act specified that states using federal higher education funds must provide an education to black students, either by opening the doors of their public universities to African Americans, or by establishing schools specifically to serve them.

Rather than integrate their public institutions, many Southern states created a completely separate set of institutions serving African Americans. Thus were born many of the South’s public black colleges.

Throughout the first half of the 20th century, black colleges thrived. They attracted top black students — the best and the brightest. Howard, Morehouse, Spelman, Tuskegee — these schools and others like them trained the lion’s share of the nation’s black doctors, lawyers, dentists, teachers and other professionals. “The golden age,” Howard archivist Clifford Muse calls it, because “when segregation was rampant some of the most brilliant black educators had to come to [black colleges] in order to have an opportunity to teach. They couldn’t go any place else.”

Even today, HBCUs may be over-performing in producing certain kinds of graduates. Though black schools represent a tiny percentage of American colleges — around 3 percent of schools – they produce 24 percent of black STEM grads and confer almost 35 percent of all bachelor’s degrees earned by black graduates in astronomy, biology, chemistry, math, and physics. According to a report from the National Science Foundation, eight of the top 10 institutions producing black undergrads who went on to earn science and engineering doctorates were HBCUs.

“If we didn’t have black colleges, we would have almost no African Americans in the sciences,” Gasman says. “We wouldn’t have any in technology. We’d have very, very few black doctors. We’d have very few black dentists, almost no black people in computer science …. We would take a hit in terms of African Americans in all of these different fields. I think that’s not a hit I want to see.”

Which would you rather have: a diploma from St. Paul’s or UVA?


The last president of St. Paul’s College sits down heavily behind his burnished desk. His knee has been acting up; getting in and out of chairs is difficult.

“Each day I walk into this office, I sit behind a desk and I look at stuff,” he says. “I see no reason for it to close. Absolutely no reason.”

Millard “Pete” Stith has a curious job for a college president: not to build his school up, but to dismantle it gently, with as much order and as little destruction as possible.

St. Paul’s College founder James Solomon Russell was born three years before slavery ended. He became an Episcopal priest and came to this rural region of southern Virginia in 1882 to start churches and a school to educate newly freed blacks. Locals warned him that the Ku Klux Klan had torched a similar school in North Carolina and so Russell waited until 1888 to establish St. Paul’s Normal and Industrial School.

St. Paul’s trained black students in the trades: brick making and welding for the men, tailoring and home economics for the women. Later it branched into liberal arts education.

But while St. Paul’s survived the ravages of the Ku Klux Klan and rampant discrimination, it couldn’t survive integration.

As traditionally white schools in the area opened their doors to black students, enrollment at St. Paul’s dwindled.

“What diploma do you want hanging on your wall?” Stith asks. “UVA or St. Paul’s?”

St. Paul’s administrators tried to keep up. They built a 500-seat auditorium with a baby grand piano, and a student union with a three-lane bowling alley.

But it wasn’t enough. Enrollment kept falling; debts piled up. The school lost its accreditation, which meant that it was no longer eligible for state or federal financial aid.


In 2013 St. Paul’s graduated about 55 students, and shut its doors. Now the whole campus — 135 acres, 31 buildings, all the furniture, and even the baby grand piano — is up for sale for $2.8 million.

“In 1888 there probably were pockets of slavery still going on and [Russell] founded this school in the midst of all of that,” Stith says. He shakes his head. “He had real threats. And he kept it open. And that’s a shame to bring this great experience to an end. It’s almost criminal.”

In the past three decades, five HBCUs have closed their doors. Many more are on academic probation or have lost their accreditation.

“I would say out of 105, there’s about 15 of them that are in pretty bad trouble,” says Marybeth Gasman. “They’re having a very difficult time.”

Gasman does not like the narrative that HBCUs are doomed. She says, with a heavy dose of sarcasm, that she’s used to people calling her up to ask if “black colleges are at the crossroads.” And she notes that colleges of all kinds are struggling to stay afloat. Higher education can be a brutal marketplace.

But Gasman does think that the headwinds that batter HBCUs are uniquely fierce.

“It’s more volatile for black colleges,” she says. “I think it’s more volatile because they have to deal with racism, people don’t think that they should exist. People start to say, “Why do we need these institutions [when] black people can go to majority institutions?””

Before higher education was desegregated in the 1950s and 60s, almost all black college students enrolled at HBCUs. Today, only about 8 percent of black college students do. It’s important to note, says Gasman, that the number of students at black colleges in the aggregate isn’t dropping. In fact, HBCU enrollment has actually increased slightly since 2000, by about 10 percent.

But in the same time period, African American enrollment across the higher education landscape as a whole increased 80 percent.


“The numbers are still up [at HBCUs], but the type of student is changing,” Gasman says. “Historically black colleges used to have overwhelming numbers of middle class students, highly prepared students, and then their makeup changed. Now you have a big mix. You have affluent students, highly prepared students, you have middle income students, mid range preparation, and you have low income and you have very little preparation.”

Earl Richardson presided over this trend firsthand over the 25 years he served as president of Morgan State University. As historically white institutions came under pressure to enroll black students, “they began to cream off our better students,” he says. “There’s been slippage in the preparedness level of our students on average.”

Lower preparedness levels hurt graduation rates, and graduation rates at historically black colleges are low, averaging just 30 percent. That number is troubling, on its face. But Jarrett Carter says it reflects the type of student that HBCUs often educate: low income, first generation, underprepared.

“You have to give some credit for colleges which are willing to do what secondary schools and systems won’t do,” he says. “Isn’t it interesting that schools that are designed to reverse engineer everything you don’t do from pre-K through 12 and fix that situation are now being regarded as failures?”

It’s a vicious cycle: Poorly prepared students lead to low graduation rates; low graduation rates make state governments and other investors reluctant to inject money into the schools; cash-strapped HBCUs have inferior facilities and underpaid faculty; this gives the impression that they are dysfunctional institutions, and makes lawmakers and alumni more reluctant to invest.

Marybeth Gasman’s research points to a consistent underfunding of public HBCUs by states, which prioritize flagship universities and other traditionally white schools in public systems. In recent years public HBCUs in Maryland, Mississippi and Alabama have sued their states for more equitable funding. And at both public and private HBCUs, donations are much lower than at their traditionally white counterparts. In 2009 the average endowment for public HBCUs was $49.3 million, compared to $87.7 million at public schools in general. For private colleges, the average HBCU endowment was $38 million, compared to $223 million for the sector as a whole.

HBCU Digest founder Jarrett Carter says that HBCUs themselves, founded as they were to provide options to people barred from other schools, were a symptom of racism; their funding situation today is another symptom of the same.

“The only way you cure [the problem] is to make black institutions look like white institutions, and that’s totally uncomfortable for people,” he says. “That’s the fight we’re now having in 2015, and I’m hoping it’s not too late.”

One note of disclosure: Historian Marybeth Gasman, who appears in this story, receives funding from the Lumina Foundation. And so does American Radioworks.

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Exploring the Experience of Higher Education for Students with Visual Impairments

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Staff and students are invited to join speakers from across the University in exploring the experience of students with vision impairment in Higher Education. This session will be of interest to those who research the experience of, teach, support or would like to be allies to, students or potential students with vision impairments.

The three short talks will last around 10-15 minutes each and there will be a chance for questions and discussion too. We encourage attendees to join in person where possible but a virtual link is available. Our three speakers are detailed below.

  • In person registration  - Arts Lecture Theatre 1 (Room 125)
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Experiences of students with vision impairment in Higher Education

Dr rachel hewett – associate professor, school of education.

In this presentation Dr Rachel Hewett will outline some key findings from the Longitudinal Transitions Study which tracked the post-school transition experience of over 80 young people with vision impairment; over half of which went into higher education. The presentation will explore the experiences and outcomes of the participants and will draw out different examples of enablers and barriers which can impact upon these, as well as providing recommendations for improving the experiences of students with vision impairment in higher education. 

Studying Mathematics in Higher Education as a Visually Impaired Student

Jimmy bryden – postgraduate student at university of manchester and alumni, school of mathematics, university of birmingham.

Jimmy Bryden will discuss his lived experience of being a visually impaired student studying for a mathematics degree. He will talk about the resources he found useful to support his studies and will discuss the project he has undertaken to create a website documenting tools and resources he and other visually impaired students have found useful in improving access to mathematics in higher education. It is hoped that this will allow new students to explore possible methods to access their studies and will be applicable to students encountering mathematics in a wide variety of disciplines.

The social and emotional needs of students with vision impairment in Higher Education

Dr ifigeneia manitsa – research fellow, school of psychology.

Dr Ifigeneia Manitsa will discuss the rationale and preliminary findings of a research project that aims to explore the lived experiences of students with vision impairment in Higher Education and develop university guidance for their social and emotional needs based on participatory research and co-production. This project has been funded by the Thomas Pocklington Trust and is a collaborative effort among the University of Birmingham, Kingston University London, Abertay University and the University of Edinburgh, in close partnership with the Sensory Support Service in Bristol which operates under a joint arrangement across the local authorities of Bristol, South Gloucestershire, Bath and North East Somerset and North Somerset.

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Universities must put people at the centre of strategy to support financial sustainability

As the higher education sector transforms, institutions must focus on the student experience and communicate clearly with staff

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EY session at WAS 2023

Learn how EY helps universities achieve better student outcomes

Financial sustainability is a major concern for universities globally. At the 2023 THE World Academic Summit, a session held in partnership with EY explored how improving the student experience not only addresses sustainability but also improves all areas of an institution.

The panellists discussed a primary research report by EY and Times Higher Education , which identified four vectors of change necessary for financial sustainability. To improve sustainability, universities must develop strategic distinctiveness with a student focus, deploy technology at scale, create and capture economies of scale and build change capacity, said Catherine Friday, managing partner for government and health sciences at EY Oceania. But, ultimately, having people at the centre of strategy is key. “If you are unable to bring faculty and students with you, everything else is a completely wasted effort,” Friday said.

Students’ expectations have permanently shifted, and their university journey is judged against their day-to-day consumer experiences, said Anna Reid, director of business transformation at EY Australia. So, a differentiated student experience gives a university a competitive advantage.

Mapped on a sentiment curve, the student experience has peaks and troughs. Reid said institutions must identify the moments when the choice to drop out or continue is made. She explained that it’s not just the student a university loses. “You’re possibly losing their friends and their family. There’s a multiplier effect,” she said of the impact of student attrition.

Reid categorised students’ requirements into three areas: convince me, teach me and support me. She said students are choosing universities because they want the flexibility to fit learning around their lifestyle, and to be reassured that they will find employment after graduation.

The university’s reputation is also important. “Knowing who you’re targeting, knowing what your offering is, knowing what you stand for and knowing what you don’t: that is the trick to being able to stand out amongst a sea of noise,” Reid said.

Explaining the “teach me” category, Reid said that a third of students feel neutral at best when asked about the quality of their learning, which might also have a multiplier effect. Flexibility is now a priority for students. Far from just meaning hybrid learning, flexibility demands a consumer-grade experience with immediate access to resources. It also means modular course and pathway design that allows them to change their minds and retain credits, Reid said. This should be designed asynchronously and offer rich, personalised content with career relevance, as well as industry links and work experience.

The “support me” aspect focuses on reducing the friction created by administrative burdens and offering tailored learning support, Reid said. Universities should use technology to predict when support will be needed and install a coaching service to help students meet their learning objectives.

“By fixing the student experience, you have a knock-on effect of fixing the staff experience,” Reid added. This improves internal operations and results in stronger advocacy for the university and a positive multiplier effect. The university will be more attractive for staff and academics and with that comes financial sustainability and funding that can be reinvested.

For digital transformation and financial sustainability, universities must free up funding from their “heritage technology landscape”, explained Alison Cairns, education leader at EY Oceania. There are four key areas for digital transformation, Cairns said. First is the use of data to get a 360-degree view of students and track their learning. Next are intelligent operations and automation to get the best of operational and professional staff. Finally, asynchronous learning and a focus on applied learning and digital organisation.

However, Cairns said, digital transformation won’t be successful unless the operating model details how it will be delivered to students and how faculties and academics will be supported.

Fiona Reyerink, executive director of strategy and operations at Macquarie University, explained Macquarie’s transformation journey with EY. An iterative approach allowed Macquarie to lead with its people and structure, keeping people at the centre. “We absolutely had to have our people ready for digital change for the student-first focus that we wanted to have,” she said. Good governance, change management and open communication helped the transition.

The chance for people to ask questions is important, said Juliet Andrews, partner for people advisory services at EY Australia. She said university staff are passionate and driven to do incredible work. But this can be a downside in the face of the increasingly fast rate of change. “People who work in universities tend to like to get into detail and really debate and argue the evidence,” she said. This creates a tension in the system. Resistance to change can be a reaction to poor communication, bad timing or personal pressures. Leadership must provide psychological safety for people to come on board, she said.

For digital adoption, Andrews recommends getting emerging technology into people’s hands quickly so they can learn how it can help them. Cultivating communities of practice lets people learn from each other as they navigate change.

“When people are emotionally more positive, they are more engaged, more productive and are resilient to change,” Andrews said.

  • Juliet Andrews, partner for people advisory services, EY Australia
  • Alison Cairns, education leader, EY Oceania
  • Catherine Friday, managing partner for government and health sciences , EY Oceania
  • Anna Reid, director of business transformation, EY Australia
  • Fiona Reyerink, executive director of strategy and operations, Macquarie University

Find out more about EY.

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Professor Thabane Vincent Maphai (Vincent)_v2


Chairperson Independent Non-Executive Director BA, BA (Hons), MPhil, DPhil, Advanced Management Programme (Harvard) and several certificates and diplomas

Chris Vorster 2020a


Chief Executive Officer Executive Director BA Social Science, BA Hons Human Resource Development, MA Management and Development

Samara Totaram 2020


Chief Financial Officer Executive Director CA(SA), CFA

Divya Singh 2020


Chief Academic Officer Executive Director BA (Law); LL.B (Cum Laude) ; LL.M; LL.D; Masters in Tertiary Education Management (with Honours)

Mathukana Mokoka 2020


Independent Non-Executive Director CA(SA)

Busi Vilakazi 2020a


Independent Non-Executive Director BSc in Electrical Engineering, MSc in Engineering, DPhil (PhD) in Engineering Science

Tom Brown 2020a


Independent Non-Executive Director BSc, HED, BEd, MEd, PhD

Nico De Waal 2020


Non-Executive Director BEng (Mech), MBA

Dries Mellet 2020


Alternate Non-Executive Director to Nico de Waal CA(SA), B Compt Hons

Chris van der Merwe 2020


Non-Executive Director B. Prim (Ed), B.Ed, M.Ed (Cum Laude) , D. Education


Johan Human 2020


Chief Operating Officer (COO) B Com B.Ed (Honours), Higher Ed Diploma (Postgrad) Med (Didactics)

Privacy Overview

Dr Thomas Henry Brown (Tom)

Independent Non-Executive Director

BSc, HED, BEd, MEd, PhD

Appointed 9 October 2019

Tom has a wealth of knowledge in education, having been involved in both contact and distance learning for many years. Tom received his PhD in the field of distance learning in 1993 and was a Research Professor in the Institute for Open & Distance Learning, UNISA. He previously held various executive positions in both public and private higher education, including CEO of CTI Education Group, MD of Midrand Graduate Institute, and Deputy Director of Telematic Learning & Education Innovation at the University of Pretoria. He has been involved in consultancy work for several institutions in the fields of private higher education, distance learning, mobile learning, educational technology and technology-enhanced learning. Tom serves on the Board of Directors of numerous companies and is Chairman of the DC Education Group. He is also one of the founding directors of the International Association for Mobile Learning (IAmLearn).

Doctor Thabane Vincent Maphai (Vincent)


BA, BA (Hons), MPhil, DPhil, Advanced Management Programme (Harvard) and several certificates and diplomas

Appointed 16 July 2020

Vincent has a wealth of experience and is passionate about education. He is currently the chairperson of Sibanye-Stillwater Limited and a non-executive director of Discovery Limited. Previously, Vincent was the Director of Corporate Affairs and Transformation at SAB and served as the southern African Chairperson of BHP Billiton. Vincent has accumulated 20 years’ experience in the academic profession, and 15 years as a senior executive in the private sector. He has served on the boards of various companies, including the SABC and the Presidential Review Commission into the restructuring of the public sector. Vincent also held a two-year academic position at Williams College in Massachusetts.

Mathukana Mokoka 

Appointed 1 May 2017 -->

Ms. Mokoka is a qualified Chartered Accountant (CA) SA with over 15 years of post-articles experience. She has sound public and private sector experience on various boards of companies, including Sanlam Limited, Palabora Mining Company (Pty) Ltd and CSG Group, amongst others. Ms. Mokoka is also the Audit and Risk Chairperson for Palabora Mining Company (Pty) Ltd and CSG Group.

Douglas Maitakhole Ramaphosa

MA Social Sciences

Appointed 9 March 2018

Douglas offers a wealth of experience, with more than 25 years of business experience through various director and board memberships, as well as holding various senior executive positions for a number of large organisations, including Transnet, ABSA and Anglo American. Previously, Douglas served as group executive of corporate affairs at Altron, was CEO of Bytes Healthcare Solutions and, prior to that, managing director of Bytes Specialised Solutions. He served on the board of Eskom Enterprises for five years and was director and chairperson of Rotek Industries. Douglas was appointed as an independent non-executive director of Curro Holdings Limited on 26 January 2018. He is also a non-executive director of EnviroServ, a waste-management company, as well as of the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA), and chairperson and director of Satori Tech Hub.

Andries Mellet  (Dries)

Alternate Non-Executive Director to Nico de Waal

CA(SA), B Compt Hons

Appointed 1 May 2017

Dries qualified as a chartered accountant  after completing his articles with PwC  and has been working for the PSG Group  since 2010. Dries was the financial  director of mCubed Holdings Limited  from October 2010 to February 2011  and Capevin Holdings Limited from April  2012 to November 2013. Dries served as  secretary to the PSG Group Executive  and joined the PSG Alpha team in 2012.

Pieter Nicolaas de Waal  (Nico)

Non-Executive Director

BEng (Mech), MBA

Nico holds an MBA from IESE Business  School of the University of Navarre  (Spain) and a B.Eng (in Mechanical  Engineering) Cum Laude degree from the  University of Stellenbosch. Nico joined  the PSG Group in 2011 and currently  serves as the chief executive officer of  PSG Alpha Proprietary Limited. Prior  to joining the PSG Group, Nico was an  executive at SABMiller plc from 2008 to 2010.  He also served as a management  consultant at McKinsey & Company,  Inc. from 2001 to 2007, specialising in  strategy and operations.

Samara Totaram  (Samara)

Chief Financial Officer

Executive Director


Appointed as CFO on 1 January 2017, and officially appointed to the Board on 18 April 2017

Samara, a qualified chartered accountant, completed her articles with Deloitte & Touche (in South Africa and New York) and then spent 18 months at the Royal Bank of Scotland in London prior to joining PSG Capital in 2007. In 2010 Samara was appointed as a director of PSG Capital and was primarily involved in new listings, capital raisings and other commercial transactions, merger and acquisitions and general corporate finance consulting. In October 2010, she joined Thembeka Capital Limited (Thembeka), a PSG Group supported B-BBEE investment company, and was appointed as its managing director in 2013. Samara drove the unlocking of value for Thembeka’s black shareholders. Samara joined Curro in October 2014 as the managing director of the Meridian venture and also served as a member of the Curro executive committee until December 2016 before joining the executive management team of STADIO.

Dr Christiaan Rudolph van der Merwe  (Chris)

B. Prim (Ed), B.Ed, M.Ed (Cum Laude), PhD in Education

Appointed 1 July 2017

Chris stepped down as chief executive officer of STADIO Holdings on 31 March 2020, having been appointed to this position in July 2017. Previously, Chris was the chief executive officer of Curro Limited (Curro) having founded Curro in 1998 in a church in Durbanville, which opened its doors with 28 learners. In 1999, he constructed Curro Durbanville’s campus and in January 2000 approximately 320 learners started the academic year on this new campus. In 2017 Chris stepped down as chief executive officer of Curro to start STADIO Holdings and continues to serve as a non-executive director on the board of directors of Curro.

Chief operating officer (COO)

Qualifications: B Com B.Ed (Honours), Higher Ed Diploma (Postgrad) Med (Didactics)

Appointed 1 April 2020

Johan was appointed as co-COO of STADIO HOLDINGS in August 2019 and full COO effective 1 April 2020. Previously, Johan was CEO of Embury (renamed to Stadio in 2019) which he co-founded in 2000. Embury was acquired by CURRO in 2013 and unbundled as part of the STADIO Group in 2017. Johan has almost 30 years of combined public and private higher education experience.


Chief Executive Officer

Qualifications: BA Social Science, BA Hons Human Resource Development, MA Management and Development

Chris V is a highly experienced businessman with a Masters degree in Management and Development (cum laude) and over 20 years’ experience in the higher education sector. He founded the highly successful Southern Business School (SBS) in 1996, which today accommodates approximately 13 000 distance learning students. SBS joined the STADIO Group in November 2007 and Mr CPD Vorster was appointed as co-chief operating officer of STADIO Holdings in August 2019, and chief executive officer of STADIO Holdings, effective 1 April 2020.

Dr Christina Busisiwe Vilakazi (Busi)

BSc in Electrical Engineering, MSc in Engineering, DPhil (PhD) in Engineering Science

Busi has an MSc in engineering and a PhD in biomedical engineering as a Nelson Mandela Scholar from the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. She is an innovative result-oriented research & development Leader with expertise in project management, strategy development and technology management and innovation management. She is a professional with a passion for the role that innovation and emerging technologies such as AI and big data can play in solving pressing challenges faced by South Africa and Africa in education and health and has a proven track record of leading and managing R&D projects in various sectors. She is currently part of the Eskom presidential task team advising the president and was a senior researcher at the CSIR.

Dr Divya Singh  (Divya)

Chief Academic Officer

BA (Law); LL.B (Cum Laude); LL.M; LL.D; Masters in Tertiary Education Management (with Honours)

Appointed as CAO on 1 February 2017, and officially appointed to the Board on 27 June 2017

Divya is an admitted advocate of the High Court of South Africa, having practiced for her own account for seven years. She is a Certified Ethics Officer by The Ethics Institute and the Executive Director of Globethics.net Southern Africa. Divya has been a professional academic for the past twenty-six years. Her last position was Vice Principal Advisory and Assurance Services at the University of South Africa (UNISA) where she was responsible for Legal Services, Risk and Compliance, the Ethics Office, Communications and Marketing and the Institutional Information Office (Data Protection and Privacy). Divya also served in the capacity of Registrar Governance as well as the Deputy Registrar, taking responsibility for institutional student administration. Divya’s research profile (in summary) includes more than 30 articles in accredited journals, ten book chapters, one book (co-edited), has presented numerous conference papers and keynote presentations, locally and globally. She has been the editor of two academic journals and an editor of Butterworths Judgment-Online (JOL). She has received awards domestically and internationally for academic contribution and community service and engagement, as well as stakeholder recognition.

Khayelihle Sibusiso Sithole  (Khaya)

Khaya qualified as a chartered accountant having  completed his articles with the FirstRand group.  Khaya has since lectured Financial Accounting  and Taxation at various universities and was  commissioned by the University of Cape  Town to participate in the FASSET-funded  Bukela Ufunde programme providing Financial  Reporting lectures in African languages to  students throughout South Africa. He has  been a director, and programme managed, the  Thuthuka Programme whilst lecturing and was  the youngest academic member appointed to  the Senate of University of KwaZulu Natal, the  National Board of Directors for ABASA and  the SAICA Eastern Region Council. Khaya is  an editor of three textbooks, namely Graded  Questions on Income Tax (Mitchell & Mitchell),  Gripping GAAP (Service & Kolitz) and Gripping  GAAP – Graded Questions (Service). His  primary passion is the mentorship of students,  the advancement of the profession amongst black  communities and the promotion of principlebased  teaching in Financial Reporting and he  is a mentor on the Shanduka Black Umbrellas  Programme which makes him responsible for the  mentorship of start-up businesses and evaluation  of business plans submitted to Shanduka and  serves on the Advisory Panel for Shanduka  Black Umbrellas. Khaya previously served on  the executive committee of the SAICA Young  CA Network in Gauteng and in 2016, became  the second South African to be awarded the  Academic Fellowship by the International  Accounting Standards Board for 2017/18 in  London. Since January 2017, Khaya has been  a graduate student at the Said Business School  at the University of Oxford, UK.

Renganayagee Kisten  (Roji)

B.Admin; B.Admin (Hons); MDP (Stell. Bus. School); GMP (Harvard Bus. School)

Rojie has a B.Admin (Hons) degree from Stellenbosch Business School and completed the General Management Programme at Harvard Business School. Rojie spent most of her working career at Old Mutual group, including Nedcor Bank. Her work experience includes amongst others: Asset management in both listed and unlisted entities; Local and international capital raising for unlisted funds; Stakeholder management within South Africa and the rest of the African Continent; investor relations; and Managing enterprise development finance.

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Ken Rusk, 'Blue Collar Cash' author and former construction worker, discusses survey data indicating employers value blue collar workers' experience and skills more than a college education.

Employers don't value college degrees as much as originally thought, recent survey data shows, and the disdain is behind a restored appreciation for blue-collar job-seekers that bring skill and experience over education.

The study , known as the Freedom Economy Index (FEI), a joint project of job recruiting service RedBalloon and PublicSquare, surveyed opinions from 70,000 small businesses between Oct. 25 and Oct. 30, with 905 respondents, a 3% margin of error and a 95% confidence level.

When asked about the "return on investment" of higher education, a whopping 67% of participating employers responded "strongly no" when asked if they believed institutions of higher education were "graduating students with relevant skills that today's business community needs."


An additional 24.4% responded with "somewhat no" while the remaining 8.7% responded either "somewhat yes," "strongly yes," or "other."

"This doesn't surprise me at all," former construction worker and "Blue Collar Cash" author Ken Rusk said Sunday on " FOX & Friends Weekend ."

College graduate

College graduates, once favored in the job market, are now seemingly less valuable than their blue-collar counterparts. (iStock / iStock)

"Colleges used to be a place where you would get a degree, and that would only enhance an effective human being, an already effective human being. Now we're seeing colleges attach these degrees to people that literally can't come out and do some of the life skills that we need."

Some who participated in the survey echoed that sentiment.

"The talent shortage will just get worse because high schools and colleges produce no talent," one employer said.


Worker using drill press

Survey data showed employers prefer skilled workers over those with a college education and no experience. (iStock / iStock)

Another called for skills to be taught in high school, while a third responded to the survey question with "Absolutely not," calling advanced education a "waste" from the perspective of a former college graduate.

Rusk said job-seekers with college degrees pose a challenge in another way.

"They've [graduates] kind of been hoodwinked a little bit to think that the degree is the thing that's going to carry the day completely," he said. "You have to remember that it's something that you're supposed to use to enhance the skills that you already have, and that's what we're seeing now. They're relying way too much on that piece of paper or that degree, rather than getting some of the experiences that they need [and] that these companies really want."

The survey also asked employers if they are more or less likely to consider a job-seeker with a four-year degree.


Technical companies are having a hard time replacing older trade workers who are retiring. There haven't been enough young people training to fill open roles.

Technical companies dealing with shortage of young, skilled trade workers

Technical companies are having a hard time replacing older trade workers who are retiring. There haven't been enough young people training to fill open roles.

Only 10% of participants said a college degree would make a potential job-seeker more hirable. On the other hand, 41.5% said the degree makes "no difference," while over 40% said a college degree would make them less likely to hire a prospective applicant.

"Let's use this to apply the law of supply and demand in our favor here, where supply is low and demand is high. That's where the money goes," Rusk said, stressing the importance of learning a trade in today's labor market.

"You can get a degree, or you can get a certificate in a lot of these trades for a tenth or a fifth of what you're paying for college. Not only that, but you're doing it in half the time, and you're earning money while you're learning versus paying to learn and then hoping you get a job that matches up with that debt."


FOX Business’ ‘How America Works’ host Mike Rowe reacts to the shortage of trade talent and 74% of adults saying these jobs are artificial intelligence proof.

Long, slow burn getting trade employees back into workforce: Mike Rowe

FOX Business’ ‘How America Works’ host Mike Rowe reacts to the shortage of trade talent and 74% of adults saying these jobs are artificial intelligence proof.

The workplace shift away from requiring college degrees has taken hold of several major companies, including Walmart, IBM, Accenture, Bank of America and Google, as the costs associated with higher education continue to skyrocket. 

High college costs have also fueled long-term discussions about student loan debt and relief from the federal government.

For more Culture, Media, Education, Opinion and channel coverage, visit foxnews.com/media

FOX News' Kendall Tietz and Nikolas Lanum contributed to this report.

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