Students of higher education are the workforce of the future. According to Co-Chairman of the Senate Task Force on Public Higher Education Senator Stan Rosenberg: “efforts to strengthen public education system must be intensified and if not the state runs the risk of becoming a second class citizens with a second-class economy” (Senate, 2005). The present can be viewed as prosperous times but maintaining budget for so numerous state services may cause severe funding for higher education in the future.
It is felt during this early part of the 21st century that there is a decline of Americans completing a college degree. The Economic Cooperation and Development reported that US ranks tenth on its 25 to 34 year old population on those who completed high school and from there only a ten percent holds a college degree (Patrick M. Callan, 2007). Best educated Americans will soon leave the workplace while other nations outperform the US in most important educational arena. America’s way of safeguarding its wealth is always through innovation.
It can boast of its citizen finishing doctoral degrees and at the same time students enjoy state of the art facilities for learning and international studies. However, there is a current trend on the narrowing of educational opportunities and a widening need for growth in education. A policy is needed which seeks to raise the educational attainment of its citizens which will help increase personal incomes that would also lead to the increase of revenues. Economic and demographic concern plays a vital role for this issue.
It is not just a matter of building many campuses but employing all available educational resources in an effort to increase the population of professionals and those who completes certificate programs. What will prevent legislators from providing substantial funding for higher education? At present, while we are experiencing normal economic growth, the reports on government spending said that some states find it almost impossible to sustain the service that is in existence within the structures of taxes (Hovey, 2000).
Tax policies at present do not grow quickly from the total personal income as a result of states’ dependence on fees and taxes from sales alone. Continuous funding for many of existing state services is placing enormous pressure on legislators to increase higher education budget. Besides, in the past it is not a common trend to direct a greater share of state budgets to higher education. The past state revenues dedicated to higher education has decreased despite of the annual 2% increase in the budget (Hoovey, 2000). This is due to the increase in the demand on the number of enrollees from high schools.
The Board of Education was tasked to plan and determine each year’s population for budget allocation every fiscal year. But, Education has been always an item for discretionary spending and in the past and during economic crisis the strategy is always to slash budgets for higher education and allow colleges to have a raise in the tuition fees. Moreover, higher education is also questioned if it could really assure most of its graduates to compete with its global based knowledge with the new trends of the world economy.
In China alone, thousands of engineers completed their trainings and are subject to the new technology: for example is the use of the computer aided design drafting technology. This change somehow affected the engineering profession because of the rapid advancement with regards to the information technology. Engineers from other country who are in the same field receive a salary lower than any employed engineer of the US. Moreover, big national companies started and many have established their manufacturing and production in China.
The proximity issue, less company expense means more profit, and competitiveness in the world market made companies realized that it would be cheaper to hire a non-citizen or an Asian than getting a national. Everyone believes that the mind is an asset but there is a growing awareness that office worker earn less than a caregiver. Office works requires college level studies for a specific industry or services. College diploma is a very expensive investment that not only requires money but also time, efforts and aptitude.
Drain brain may not yet be a problem but the increasing number of professionals who are paid less of what they deserve is a new wave being encountered today. The brawn drain issue has started to sift human resources management and employment policy on wages. Competition is tough and human resource may become indispensable in the future. It is important that policy makers first recognize that other nations have moved assertively to win over our position and next is to make choices that are applicable to the new economy. These urgent concerns must not leave any room for complacency.
Legislators must also provide programs, research and strategies that could raise educational productivity (Patrick M. Callan, 2007) . Horace Mann founder of public Education in America in his own consideration said that the mind or human intellect is unlimited in resources. He concluded that the mind is the wealth of the State. It made many middle class live a happy life in a prosperous nation. He also said that knowledge is better than silver and gold. But with the shift of the new generation, will everyone get an equal footing? Mann could always be right and that is what our human culture believes.
But the world is changing, there is crisis going on in the world that endangers the future. The new trend in global economy needs a strong leadership that could balance economic success with increasing opportunity for the workforce. Meaning high paying careers that will make sure every citizen become a success without leaving family and home, enjoying a high quality of life that innovation promotes. This is the future everyone looks for but sad to say that the rapid change in innovation may only be advantageous to a very limited few.
Innovation and enterprise are two forces that push the cart of the future towards success. Innovation must serve man and not vice-versa. While, enterprise should provide man a venue for work that can be sanctified and will remain a service to mankind. The future demands that we reassess our values and sharpen our tool for career growth. That tool is termed as “study”.
References Hovey, H. A. (2000). State Shortfalls Projected Despite Current Fiscal Prosperity [Electronic Version]. Retrieved 06 February 2008, from http://www. highereducation.
org/reports/policyalert/pa_state_spending/pa_state_spending. shtml Patrick M. Callan, P. T. E. , Joni E. Finney, Dennis P. Jones. (2007). Good Policy, Good Practice Improving Outcomes and Productivity in Higher Education: A Guide for Policymakers [Electronic Version]. Retrieved 05 February 2008, from http://www. highereducation. org/reports/Policy_Practice/GPGP. pdf Senate, M. (2005). Report of the Senate Task Force on Public Higher Education: Investing in our Future [Electronic Version]. Retrieved 06 February 2008, from http://www. mass. gov/legis/reports/public_higher_ed_taskforce_report. htm