John Churchill, Secretary of Phi Beta Kappa, in the Spring 2013 Key Reporter :
There is a powerful push to vocationalize college curricula and to measure the worth of a degree solely in economic terms. This tendency will magnify differences of access to transformative liberal arts experiences. Ironically, students who would benefit most from immersion in the liberal arts and sciences will be increasingly less likely to encounter them. This is a bad thing for America.If powerful and moneyed interests now seeking to reshape higher education have their way, “college” will soon become a two-tier system, with the real thing for a privileged few (MOOC stars have to teach somewhere, right?) and credits and credentials, haphazardly assembled, vocationally themed, for everyone else. If this prospect weren’t in itself appalling, the rhetoric of inevitability that sells it — get on board or be swept away — would be reason enough to object.
It is time to reassert plain facts. College is not only about training for jobs. It is about citizenship. It is about shaping oneself into a fully-realized adult person. It is about learning to cope constructively with questions of meaning and value. In a democracy, we need to take as many of us, as far as possible, down that path.