Is college worth it?

Is Glenn anti-college? Last night on TV he had a bunch of current college students and recent graduates to discuss the value of their education versus the financial costs – and one listener wasn’t a fan of Glenn’s advice.

While the caller, Erica, is usually a big Glenn fan, she said, “I think you’re giving maybe high school seniors false hope that they can just go out, educate themselves and get a job.”

Glenn pointed out that the majority of the radio staff – including himself – did not have college degrees. He also pointed out the successful entrepreneurs like the founder of JetBlue did not attend college.

“I am not anti‑education by any stretch of the imagination, and I made it very clear last night I am not anti‑college,” Glenn said. “Benjamin Franklin went and got his education as an apprentice. There is such a thing as getting an education other than through the gates of a university that are charging our children $100,000 to $150,000 to $250,000 just to be able to have a certificate that doesn’t necessarily mean anything to them.”

“This entire society holds up an Ivy League education as, well, you’ll ‑ everything is going to be rosy if you have that. We have a whole generation going into debt, massive, massive debt,” Glenn said.

“We’re damning our children to hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Stu added. “Before they work a day in their life and they spend over half the time they’re there in recreation.  It’s insanity.”

Pat explained that he had originally got a job in radio as a teenager in order to save money for college, but when it was time to go to college he realized he was already doing something he loved and was making a living at it.

“I’m not anti‑education.  I am anti‑massive debt.  I am anti‑giving our children’s souls over to these universities.  I am anti‑ this administration making internships almost impossible for businesses to do to be able to have them help the business,” Glenn said.

“We’re teaching our high school students to go into college and then get that diploma and that will be a magic ticket to a job and then what happens?  And then they sit around and they say, well, nobody’s giving me a job.  Get off your damn ass and create something,” Glenn exclaimed.

Glenn then started discussing his interns, many now employees, who got tremendous experience working for Mercury but also were huge contributors to the company. But when Jon, a Columbia University alum who works for Glenn, said he would leave school early to come work full time for Mercury – Glenn insisted he stay and finish school.

And what about Natasha, a producer for the radio show who also joined after her internship? You can read her story here.

Glenn concluded that education is very important – but there must be renewed respect for trade schools, apprenticeships, and entrepreneurs who choose not to go to college.