Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Corbett on Education

John Micek over at Capitol Ideas is reporting that Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Corbett told a college audience that education should prepare them for in-demand jobs. This sounds like common sense. And those opportunities should be made available. However, as a parent, I dislike the idea that students should not be able to explore those areas that inspire them, whether a tailor made job is there or not. CI quotes Corbett as saying:

“Development of an educated workforce that meets the demands of the marketplace is the most critical element to ensuring the economic vitality of Pennsylvania,” he said.

Innovation and job creation also depends on entrepreneurs and new technologies and discoveries. Those are usually not driven by corporate widgetry. It is interesting to look at a list of college majors and the income levels of people with an undergraduate degree in that major and no further education. See "Best undergraduate college degrees by salary," on payscale.com. Note that philosophy outranks chemistry, accounting, and information technology. Chances are very corporate help wanted ads call for a philosophy degree. That doesn't mean we should close down all the philosophy departments.

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