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How could ‘free college’ help state fiances?

Staff WriterMay 16, 2019

I would only wish that the numbers proposed in the 4th paragraph of the May 8th article on free college tuition could be proved, along with the other astounding numbers projected by the article’s interviewee. Read along to the last column, 6th paragraph from the bottom. From President Mark Ojakian: “As it stands now, only 16 percent of students complete community college within three years.” Please explain how greater enrollment guarantees higher graduation (accomplishment) rates?

And unless and until the curriculum is changed to meet Connecticut’s growing demand for skilled, qualified potential employees, community colleges will continue to be a “holding pen’” for the unsure/undecided/ unprepared, even upon “commencement.” (We won’t even go into the knowledge/skills/abilities not present as they are accepted into senior universities, to swell their enrollment figures.)

Not one word on this in the May 8th article, except from a financial point-of-view. (Numbers people always have a tendency to obfuscate to confuse the real issues.)

If Connecticut wants an answer to the educational crisis in this state, please, once again, refer to the Letter to the Editor by Frances Pulle of Bethel earlier this year. (“Open Letter to Mark Ojakian”) Not only should every word of her letter be considered, but also adhered to.

As a long-time college educator/administrator and a current volunteer “Executive-in-Residence” at one of the four universities, I totally support every one of her “de-cluttering, Cleaning House” recommendations.

Maybe then the “numbers people” will be able to tout some real metrics.

Michele Mattia


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