Letters to the Editor

Letter: Higher education

I too am of the opinion that the institutionalized approach of higher education is stifling the ability of students to learn, primarily through the continued use of a structure of tenure. I have a B.A. in business economics/finance and I am a chartered financial analyst. I have over 28 years of experience in the investment management business, and have managed mutual funds for Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan, and Paine Webber. However, I can’t get a job teaching finance and investments at most universities unless I have a Ph.D. In a typical free market system, competition drives down the prices of competing products, yet the current structure of the higher education system protects professors from competition, thus keeping prices (salaries) higher than they would be in a competitive environment.

I would also argue that many of the best-qualified potential professors are excluded from teaching due to the structure of the current system. If universities truly want to differentiate themselves from their competitors, they need to distinguish themselves through the quality of the education a student receives. Creative destruction can only exist when competition is not discouraged through systemic biases.

Kevin A. Jones, Boise