The law on free college tuition (Part 2) Print
Monday, 14 August 2017 11:47

By Remedios F. Marmoleño

I certainly support the idea that education is a major key in improving the economic status of a person and his/her  family. But does that mean the person has to have a college degree as attested to by a piece of paper commonly called a diploma?  How many people with degrees are there flipping burgers in the 1000 or so stores of a major food chain the Philippines? How many are out of the country working as domestic helpers in foreign countries? Or working as sales clerks in the malls?

There is nothing wrong with flipping burgers or acting as nannies or  sales clerks. But most certainly one does not need a college diploma to do this kind of work.

And then there is the new senior high level of education in the Philippines. From what I gather those who finish senior high are deemed ready to be absorbed into the employment market of the country. If we can somehow put the money that is being put aside for the free tuition in SUCs and LUCs into the senior high program and make this really work, won’t that be more realistic?

I worked for a master’s degree in a state university in the US but my tuition was paid for by the exchange program I was lucky enough to have been in. The undergraduate American students I lived with paid for tuition, although this was not as high as in private universities within the state. In connection with this piece I googled for information on current tuition charged by state universities in the US  and this ranged from about $5,000 to $20,000 a year.

If the US with all its public funds still charge tuition in their state universities can we really afford not to? The law for the free tuition ( as well as board and lodging, books and transactions,  whatever that is ) is going to be a popular one but I  do not believe the needed funding  can be sustained over a long period. Then we will see the quality of college education in SUCs  going down. This is what happened in our elementary schools and high schools over the years.

Also, an  important question to ask  is “ Do we have enough jobs in the Philippines to offer to the thousands who will have graduated from college in 2022, or 4 years after next school year? “

The questions in  the  preceding paragraphs are just a few of several I have found myself asking. I am sure the reader can ask  a few more.