Today’s college graduates are finding themselves drowning in a mountain of debt, wondering why the promise of a better life with a college degree isn’t working.
Meanwhile, the number of people who know how to perform a skilled trade is also dwindling, creating a serious problem for America.
That is why this truth bomb from Mike Rowe is so essential for every American to hear.
Mike Rowe says degrees are no longer a source of pride
Celebrity, philanthropist, and CEO of Mike Rowe Works Foundation Mike Rowe sat down with Fox Business for an interview on the show “The Bottom Line.”
Rowe explained that there’s a significant problem occurring with four-year institutions these days.
He claimed that the “bottom is falling out of the perception market for a four-year degree” and that graduates of these universities “no longer resonate with pride.”
“Back in the mid-60s, higher-ed needed a PR campaign, a good one, and it got one. Unfortunately, it came at the expense of every other form of education. And then we wound up with a skills gap, no shop class, and so forth,” he said.
Rowe also mentioned that he thinks “something really extraordinary happened during the lockdowns,” speaking to co-hosts Sean Duffy and Dagen McDowell.
“Everybody’s getting a trophy” and an A, even though they attended some of the nation’s most prestigious institutions, said Rowe.
However, he added, “If I’m an employee hiring a Harvard grad, I honestly have no idea who I’m hiring. It could be a disciplined, hardworking, smart, industrious, self-starter. Or it could be the son of the son of a legacy who coasted through the whole thing.”
A 2023 Gallup poll discovered that a paltry 17% of Americans said they had a “great deal” of confidence in their universities.
Just 19% said they had “quite a lot” of confidence, 40% said they only had, “some” confidence and 22% said that they had “very little.”
According to Rowe, he’s not sure what to “conclude” from the massive changes in higher education, but he does know that a PR problem is now “unfolding for the credential that we know as a four-year degree.”
Education and the election
Among the supporters that recently helped push Trump to victory over his opponent, Nikki Haley, in the New Hampshire primary, many were non-college-educated voters.
“Ten years ago, if you said, ‘Hey, I’ve got the support of the college-educated behind me,’ I think the average person would immediately go, ‘Okay, so the smart people are with you’—but something’s happened,” said Rowe.
Rowe claims that he “can’t find any evidence to indicate that [having the support of the college-educated] means you have the support of wise, prudent, thoughtful people.”
He did admit that “education is too important to root against it,” but he does think higher-ed will “have to go splat” before it returns to being exceptional again.
Meanwhile, Rowe says that college grads are taking their “shameful” degrees “off their wall” and that “the worm is turning.”
Read All About It will keep you up-to-date on any developments to this ongoing story.