What is College For?

At a time when traditional notions of college are under attack — in the shift to online instruction, in the emphasis on STEM fields and the denigration of the liberal arts, in the continued privatization of public higher education — it is urgent that we ask what college is supposed to be about in the first place. What happens when education is understood in purely vocational terms? What happens to schools, to teachers, to society — to students themselves? Why are students learning so little in college? Why are courses so much less important to them than extracurriculars? Why do so many young people today have trouble finding a sense of purpose? What are we doing to our children, and why are we doing it?

Festival: 2015

Watch and Listen: Education

Robert Runcie always hoped that the students of his district would have a chance to participate in the national... See more
The Aspen College Excellence Program aims to expand the number of excellent community colleges, to increase opportunity... See more
Join Sal Khan as he shares the inspiring story of how he founded Khan Academy, a nonprofit organization that is now... See more
What is a university if not a true marketplace of ideas — a place where scholarly pursuits in history, science,... See more
Join Richard Barth, CEO of the KIPP Foundation, and Rich Buery, chief of policy and public affairs for the KIPP... See more
The genius of artificial intelligence (AI) is its capacity to swiftly mine repositories of data, such as the vast... See more

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