Bursting of the higher education bubble

Editors at Investor’s Business Daily welcome the end of the higher education bubble (discussed frequently in this venue).

A good indication of a tightening labor market is the fact that several major corporations have dropped their college degree requirements. College just became an even bigger waste of time and money for many.

Job recruiting site Glassdoor recently reported that companies like Google, Apple, IBM, Bank of America no longer require that applicants have a college degree.

Neither do companies like Costco, Whole Foods, Publix, Chipotle, Home Depot, Starbucks. (Does it really take a college degree to know how roll a burrito, pour coffee, or stack giant jars of mayonnaise?)

When jobs were scarce and unemployed workers plentiful, requiring a college degree might have made some sense, if only to easily weed out most applicants. When workers are scarce, companies can’t be so picky.

But in any economy, there’s a downside to college requirements. Limiting the worker pool to graduates feeds into the notion that everyone has to go to college, when many kids shouldn’t. It also eliminates opportunities for the two-thirds of people without a degree, many of whom would probably be better workers than pampered graduates holding a degree in sociology and lugging a mountain of debt.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...