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Why Donald Trump Would be a Disaster for Higher Education in America



By David Biden, Semesterz

Look, we’ll be honest, Donald Trump would be a disaster for pretty much everything in America. However, when it comes to higher education it seems as though his plans would be pretty much catastrophic. We’re talking nuclear. Don’t believe us? Here are some things the floppy-haired presidential candidate has said about higher education, and what it could mean for the future.



For-Profit Colleges

[post_ads]Did you know that Donald Trump has his own for-profit college? Trump University was set up online in 2005 and apparently never tried getting accreditation. Although we’re not sure how true that is – as he could have just been denied it. He was quickly told to change the name from Trump University and it soon became the Trump Entrepreneur Initiative. By 2013 he was again in trouble, this time for misinterpreting classes and so a long (and ongoing) lawsuit began. His is not the only for-profit college in the country and many of them have come under scrutiny over the years, for not really providing a proper education to its students. It’s likely that Trump will want to loosen the regulations on these – both to serve his own gain and to boost the other for-profits in the country. Do you really want colleges to be turned into money making businesses, intent on the cash as opposed to education? We don’t think so! 


Cutting the Department

One of his most infamous quotes when it comes to education was actually in reference to the US Department of Education. This has actually been popular with Republicans in recent years, some of whom have spoken about getting rid of the department altogether. When asked about his own thoughts on the matter, Trump said he wanted to cut the US Department of Education “way, way, way down.” While that may seem slightly tamer than getting rid of it completely, it could still signal disaster for higher education in America. Especially as he hasn’t said how exactly he wants to make the cuts but it could seriously impact low-income families who rely on Pell grants.


Dumbing Down

America has had a proud heritage of being fairly progressive in schools and empowering students over the years. Donald Trump is adamant that this is ‘dumbing down’ and that schools should be challenging students more than anything. We can only imagine what this would mean for those who struggle to learn or who have actual learning difficulties. This mindset could have a lot to do with his own education, as Trump attended New York Military Academy. There he was taught a lot about discipline, but admits that he didn’t work all that hard. Trump made headlines in 2012 when he challenged Obama to release his college records and test scores, in return for a lump sum donated to charity. Unsurprisingly, Obama didn’t rise to it, especially when he also requested passport and birth certificate details. It seems as though Trump believes that US colleges should be run more like military schools and there is no room for failure or stupidity. A bit ironic when you think about it.
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All of this combined doesn’t paint a very pretty picture for what higher education would be like with Donald Trump in charge. In fact, it all seems a bit grim. Lower income families would struggle to send their kids to college. Those with learning difficulties would be practically shunned in favour of those who naturally do well. And for-profit colleges could soon take over the whole of America. With Trump’s probably being at the forefront of it all.


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