American Colleges and Universities, with their sprawling campuses and buildings are not what they once were. Dormitories full of co-eds partying, gossiping and maybe even studying are now staying at home for a variety of reasons.
The cost of the university experience has gone up considerably year over year. Since 1980 the cost of going to college is up 1200%. Is it because college professors are getting paid more? No. It is more administration! Sited in Forbes, in 2014, instructional costs were about 148 billion and administrative expenses were 122.3 billion. Interesting! Yes, in 1980, only 26% of the cost of a college education was administration.
Another reason for the death of the American College experience is technology. While it was necessary to go to college to get an education, tech has made it possible to get lectures online and have no relationship with a campus. There is no need for campus life. In 2019, at least 33% of students were attending at least one course online. With the events that have transpired in the last few years, that number is certain to climb.
When I attended college in 1999, the fastest connection was on the college campus. My home still had dial up internet, but we had a T1 connection at school which enabled me to download music on Napster at super quick speeds. Now, college students can stay at home with their quick internet in their own bedrooms and stay in their pajamas while zooming their professor’s lectures. No need to eat nasty cafeteria food, mom’s cooking is just downstairs. And Uber Eats can easily deliver to your house, instead of your dorm room.
Outbreaks at colleges have always been an issue, and that is now even more at the forefront of everyone’s minds since 2020. My college had an outbreak of meningitis right before Thanksgiving my sophomore year. Where massive people congregate, use showers, eat, sleep and unfortunately sometimes sleep around, there will be outbreaks of disease.
With people staying in their own homes, there is less of a chance for outbreaks. It is not necessarily going to be nonexistent, but diseases break out when people shower in the same places and congregate. Warts, athletes foot and other nasty fungus were also common in our bathrooms at our schools..
At home, you can clean your own bathrooms and make sure your kitchen area is clean and sanitized, where shared spaces aren’t always as clean.
Will this be the end of Campus Life at American Universities?
Teenagers once reveled in getting away from home and experiencing life in a new town or city. But, more and more kids are choosing to stay home, do online school or even commute. Harvard Business School moved their MBA classes online to curb an outbreak and other schools keep wavering between online and in person classes. Many families do not want their students sitting in rooms all alone. Solitary situations for these students have been terrible and so families have opted to keep their students home instead.
What do you think?