What Does College Tuition Really Buy?

HarpeValue Of Colleger’s Magazine reported in November 2012: 81% of Americans who viewed college as a good financial investment in 2008 dropped to 57% in August 2012.  Now, there’s much room for interpretation of “good”–however, is the change in the average value of a college degree indicating a shift away from college, and if so, what experience is going to replace the function that college currently serves for the maturing of youth in America?  As many teenagers share with Creative Marbles Consultancy that one of their primary motivations for going to college is to “gain independence and move away from home”, what other experience is going to help youth mature into economically contributing members of society?

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Cartoon Source: The New Yorker, September 24, 2012