The Decline of American Education and the Decline of America

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“We are going to do in the future what Americans are doing today. Your job is to invent the future” says Jaithirth Rao of the Indian company MphasiS to Thomas Friedman, author of The World is Flat (389). America has always been abreast of the latest and greatest ideas and designs. However, America’s position in the world is becoming increasingly difficult to guarantee due the decreasing number of college graduates. Tamar Lewin reports in a New York Times article how a recent study by Complete College America discovered that “despite decades of steadily climbing enrollment rates, the percentage of students making it to the finish line is barely budging” (College Graduation Rates). Why? A simple answer is that a large number of American high schools aren’t adequately preparing their students for college. To reset this trend, good work ethic, innovative courses, and early vocational and technical training should be introduced and encouraged in high schools. Thomas Friedman and his book The World is Flat describe the effects of globalization on the world. Foreign schools are quickly rising to and even surpassing the levels of education in America, putting our place in the world in jeopardy. In America, good work ethic has become a trait that is becoming more and more difficult to find. High schools teachers expect their students to practice it, but where would they learn it from? Good work ethic is a trait that is built over time, not one that is simply learnt in an afternoon. Too often, students find that they can make it through high school without ever having to use good work ethic, and as a result, don’t bother to learn how to build it up. A simple solution to this would be to make students take a mand... ... middle of paper ... ...r.” Wsj.com. Wall Street Journal, 8 Jan. 2011. Web. 28 Jan. 2012. Fouts, Susan, and Roger Hill. “Work Ethic and Employment Status: A Study of Jobseekers.” Journal of Industrial Teacher Education 42.3 (2005): n. pag. Web. 29 Jan. 2012. Friedman, Thomas. The World is Flat. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2006. Print. Lewin, Tamar. “College Graduation Rates Are Stagnant Even as Enrollment Rises, a Study Finds.” Nytimes.com. New York Times, 27 Sept. 2011. Web. 29 Jan. 2012. Obama, Barak. “2012 State of the Union Speech.” The White House. Capitol Hill, Washington D.C. 24 Jan. 2012. Address. Reuteman, Rob. “Vocational School Enrollment Booms Amongst White Collar Bust.” Cnbc.com. CNBC, 3 Dec. 2009. Web. 29 Jan. 2012. Welsh, Peter. “For Once, Blame The Student.” Editorial. Usatoday.com. USA Today, 7 Mar. 2008. Web. 29 Jan. 2012.

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