New Study: College Students Learn Next to Nothing

Remember when the end of the government credit induced housing bubble exposed homes as overpriced that turned out to be worth way less and that many people wished they’d never bought?

If you do and if you have a brain, then you can surely make the connection to the government credit induced college education bubble, whose end will expose college degrees as overpriced, making many people realize they should have never spent that kind of money.

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Graduating in the UK- A Record 70 Applications Per Job on Average

The guardian writes Graduates warned of record 70 applicants for every job:

Graduates are facing the most intense scramble in a decade to get a job this summer, as a poll of employers reveals the number of applications for each vacancy has surged to nearly 70 while the number of available positions is predicted to fall by nearly 7%.

The class of 2010 have been told to consider flipping burgers or stacking shelves when they leave university as leading firms in investment banking, law and IT are due to cut graduate jobs this year.

Competition in the jobs market is fiercer now than for the first “post-crunch” generation of students, last year, when there were 48 applications for each vacancy.

And so the global depression continues … To those folks who were looking for a job in investment banking or similar opportunities and are now presented the option to take a job flipping burgers or stocking shelves … take it rather sooner than later! It’s not a bad thing to do something that’s actually useful for a change.

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College Grads Move Back Home – Time to Reflect and Change Attitudes writes College graduates move back home:

They’ve been dubbed boomerang kids and a recent poll by shows that 80% of 2009 college graduates moved back in with their parents. That’s up quite a bit from recent years.

So whether kids are home for just an extended summer or until they find a job, its important to set up some guidelines before they settle in.

Consider drawing up a written agreement between you and your child. Outline a time frame as well as responsibilities, both financial and around the house. Some parents charge rent while others won’t even consider the idea. Whichever you choose, make sure to make clear exactly what the child is responsible for when it comes to other expenses like groceries.

Keep credit cards and cell phones separate. Johnny can pay for that himself. These are financial responsibilities your child needs to learn to take on.

But do consider keeping your child on your health insurance plan. If your health plan is employer-based it probably offers lower premiums than individual health insurance.

Twenty-five states give graduates the option to be covered under their parent’s policy, but state laws vary, so the age cutoff could be 24, 25 or 26. New Jersey has the highest age limit at 30. Check out the Kaiser Family foundations Web site at to learn about your state’s rules.

The reality is, if your child is too old to qualify, you’ll need to find individual health insurance and decide who will pay for it.

Don’t forget about auto insurance either. If your child plans on driving the family car, your payments will go up. So figure out who is going to pay what.

The bottom line is, you don’t want to risk your own financial health. You shouldn’t feel like you’re on the hook for things you used to pay for when your child was younger.

Food and shelter for one extra person costs thousands of dollars each year. So laying everything out on the table ahead of time and establishing a plan of action is key.

…and one more thing to teach your kid above all: Live within your means. Don’t repeat this generation’s mistakes. Work hard, spend little, be frugal, save money, DO NOT use credit cards.

Attitudes are already changing accordingly. The recent Gallup poll shows In U.S., One-Third Still Set on Spending Less as New Normal:

The accompanying table displays by income the percentage of those saying their new normal is to spend more or to spend less in the years ahead, based on a combined sample of those interviewed in Gallup’s April and July surveys. While one might expect there to be differences in the impact of the recessionary economy across income groups, that is not the case. There is little substantive variation by income in the percentage saying their new normal is to spend less. Those with lower incomes are slightly more likely than higher-income Americans to say their new normal pattern is spending more, but not by much.


This is just another symptom of the End of Consumerism. Attitudes are changing. Attitudes emerge out of ideas. And ideas are the strongest force in society, stronger than the most powerful army. To understand the long term outlook for the US economy, a thorough understanding of the power of ideas and attitudes is indispensable.

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