The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Get a College Degree to Get a Job—But First You Need to Get a Job to Pay for It

Oct 30, 2006

In this rough time period, when thousands of workers are losing their jobs, the message to displaced workers is that you have to get a college degree in order to meet the requirements of the current job market.

There is, however, a problem with this mandate to get a college degree: higher education is priced out of reach for the working class AND sections of the middle class.

For years, the children of the working class had to go into huge debt to go to college. Now even that’s not enough.

The College Board’s latest annual report on student aid and college pricing found that over the past five years, tuition has gone up 35% at public four-year universities.

If you don’t already have access to money, where are you supposed to get the $6,000 to $20,000 a year just to pay for tuition, let alone books, transportation money and living expenses? Don’t look for government aid–the government at every level is cutting back.

The real future for the working class is not in working three jobs to get a college degree. It is in fighting for a society where people can have good jobs, and also have the time to pursue education throughout their entire lives, as a right, not a privilege.