Administrators Weigh In On The Rising Cost And Questionable Benefit Of A College Education
BC Hopes To Produce Well-Rounded Grads
Published: Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01
"I am suspicious of anyone who would suggest that such an approach holds out great promise on a large scale," Quigley said. "I remain convinced that four years of study at Boston College is a wise investment, for individuals and for the larger society. Our alumni make powerful contributions to their communities, and their college experiences prove over and over again to have been formative."
"Most people are most convinced by the path that they took," Rombalski said. "If you're a marine, you hearken back to boot camp, and even though it was horrible and painful, you want every other marine to go through boot camp. Everyone, first and foremost, relates to their former experiences. These guys had bad collegiate experiences and, to their credit, their choices were probably right for themselves, but they don't know what the path would have looked like if they hadn't gone to college either."
Rombalski believes the BC mission relies on educating students not simply for such vocational purposes but for the good of society. "We believe at BC that one of the prevailing goods about you going to college is the argument from the public good. If you go to college, and you're well-educated, you'll vote better, you'll become an involved citizen in the community you grew up in, you'll be more ethical in terms of how you think about society, and you might even become other-minded, so when you do something, it's not just for your own personal gain, it's for the gain of the public."
The debate rages on about the value of the college degree, but Rombalski and Quigley challenge students to find merit in their learning. "When I was in college, I wasn't thinking about what I wasn't getting," Rombalski said. "I was thinking about immersing myself in the experience before me. I think the average BC student is very serious about their learning, and that's a credit to our student body."
"I'd urge [unsatisfied students] to meet with individual professors and academic advisors and also to reach out to their deans," Quigley said. "One of the great strengths of this University is the wide range of excellent academic programs which enable students to find a good fit for their talents and passions."