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Letter: Emphasis on ‘training’ is detrimental to education

Emphasis on ‘training’ is detrimental to education

There is a specter haunting America. It is the specter of “training” as opposed to education. “Training” as a new model for learning is against humans interacting with other humans in higher education. The State University of New York appears to have been taken over by anti-education “training” advocates who believe that universities and colleges should be organized in such a way that they are able to efficiently (that is: cheaply) train humans to be good employees, thus relieving business and industry of this burden. College educators can be eliminated along with the liberal arts, indeed all arts, so that adjunct “professors” can carry huge loads of online students in canned courses of study.

The political hacks in the SUNY administrative apparatus call this “keeping up with the times.” They cite “rising costs of attendance, demands for efficiency and increased attention to return on investment.” In reality, they are merely dupes in the ongoing effort to dumb down Americans.

Legalizing drugs and valorizing the gladiatorial games known as professional sports are another aspect of this trend. So is the privatization of formerly public schools.

I know. It sounds like another conspiracy theory. It’s not. I’m not claiming that a bunch of rich people get together to plan how they can safeguard and enhance their gluttony. It just works out that way because of the sales pitch that business knows best. Business theory has begun to dominate activities and institutions that were never intended as economic endeavors. Education is a cultural activity, not an economic one. The purpose of economic activity is to support human culture, not the opposite, which is the new direction in what should be renamed “lower education.”

The more we acquiesce in allowing training to replace education the more likely it will be that we will stumble into an Orwellian nightmare.

John Marvin