Recently I heard on a local radio station an ad for New Mexico State University stating something like NMSU graduates get jobs. To me this implies that NMSU believes the purpose of education is to be able to get a job. In the graduate course Exploration of Education taught by Jamie Baker, Assistant Director of Secondary Education, our first assignment was to write a short paper answering the question, "What is the purpose of education?" using our own voice. Here are a few excerpts from my paper:
The most significant objective of public education I feel is to improve the quality of life of the individual...For the average American forty plus years will be spent in the work force. To ensure quality of life, then preparing students for the work force must be a primary goal of the public educational system...The highest level on Maslow's hierarchy is self-actualizing where personal growth and fulfillment are achieved. In order for our students to reach this level they must be prepared to enter the work force either as a white-collar worker through a college education or blue-collar worker through a journeyman program; either one now requires a high school diploma or G.E.D....Therefore, I feel the purpose of education is to help students accomplish fulfillment in their lives by preparing them for the work force through classroom settings and extracurricular school activities.
Jamie Baker gave me an F on this paper; I received 12 points out of 25.
So which is it New Mexico State University?!