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New Yeah, but
From my privileged seat in a real, public, not for profit university that designs the very finest weapons of mass destruction, I must say that I loathe UP and its ilk.

That said, spending on education is countercyclical: as employment improves, enrollment declines.
New Good point.
New Why?
I see two possibilities:

1. More jobs means less people with the free time to go to school. (Same reason crime goes down. Hmm, would be interesting to see how higher education rates track with crime rates.)

2. Less jobs means people think an education will help them get the ones that are left.

I'm sure there's some of both at play, I wonder which is the bigger driver.

New #2
That reminds me of various choices I faced after graduating from college. The job market being crappy at the time (10% unemployment) helped making the choice to continue in school much easier.

Lots of factors go into it (availability of grants, loans, etc.), but the state of the economy is a very big factor.

New #2, but for a slightly different reason
I know people who "hid" in school additional years while waiting for the economy to improve.
New Didn't you both just say #1?
In both your examples, when there were jobs ready to take people took them rather than staying in school.

New Trick question!

There were jobs available when I graduated, even with 10% unemployment. But I didn't want to enlist. ;-)

New "Free time" is different from panic starvation
New We need several new words for 'job'-like things, for the 21st Century
From Corner-office sinecure ... on down to McD-Walmart/Temps running-in-place, with multiple "jobs" and little food/shelter/clothing.

Gig used to apply to musicians--a peripatetic prance from one locale to another.
Earning a decent surplus over bare subsistence we are pleased to call a career.
We see that Professional- modifier has already bitten the dust:
(Ask an I.T. person about paid/perceived Corporate-status -?- despite massive lore, demonstrably good judgment--crucial for all operations.) amiright, Sirs?
Politicians lump-it-all into some stupid number like IQ (or worst-possible collective: "The Murican People demand ____ ...

So how do we indicate properly.. these clear Class-dividers of "occupations"?

(How else? to call-attention to the hypocrisy which keeps these immense-gaps under the same umbrella-word.)
These are all distinct ways to try-to-persist, in a plutocracy; let's keep the laser on the base-causes?

dysLexicographers Untie and reweave!

And when we solve that: mayhap there can be a review of w.t.f. IS that massive difference between A Liberal Education™ and
(borrowing $40-80K at usurious interest-rates … maybe for a U.P. pseudo-Ed-ja-Kay'-shun for)
merely a ticket-to-play … within a Corporate sandbox?? for the rest of your unnatural liff?

Gnostics everywhere want to know. Is This execrable fate that progress-thing for which we killed off those (earlier) Visigoths?
It seems they're baaack. With shrinkable-cubicles and day/night time-clocks.

Ed: word.
Expand Edited by Ashton Aug. 27, 2014, 12:22:16 AM EDT
New A gig does describe well what I do
get a start time, the length of the gig depends on the profit/loss during the term of the gig which may be lengthened or shortened depending on receipts.
Any opinions expressed by me are mine alone, posted from my home computer, on my own time as a free American and do not reflect the opinions of any person or company that I have had professional relations with in the past 59 years. meep
     So, U of Phoenix founder dies. - (mmoffitt) - (12)
         Not education ... "credentialling" -NT - (drook) - (1)
             Jeez, you must not be a "Phoenix". - (a6l6e6x)
         Yeah, but - (gcareaga) - (9)
             Good point. -NT - (Another Scott)
             Why? - (drook) - (7)
                 #2 - (Another Scott)
                 #2, but for a slightly different reason - (crazy)
                 Didn't you both just say #1? - (drook) - (2)
                     Trick question! - (Another Scott)
                     "Free time" is different from panic starvation -NT - (crazy)
                 We need several new words for 'job'-like things, for the 21st Century - (Ashton) - (1)
                     A gig does describe well what I do - (boxley)

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