“Thus, making college free would not only fail to solve the problem; it would also exacerbate it. Removing the cost will drive a wedge between the costs and benefits of pursuing education in different fields.
If we want to have a revival within the liberal arts, universities need to be transparent and upfront with students about their earnings and career prospects under different degree paths. For example, the relative dominance of the social sciences is consistent with the surge in demand and returns in the labor market for data science skills. But even traditional liberal arts students, such as English or classics majors, often acquire skills that complement those of hardcore data scientists. For example, a joint study by the American Enterprise Institute and Burning Glass Technologies detailed recommendations for helping liberal arts majors to better integrate into the labor market and pursue meaningful careers.
The Trump administration has championed greater transparency in higher education. For example, building on the March 21 Executive Order on improving free inquiry, transparency, and accountability at colleges and universities, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has redesigned the College Scorecard, adding critical information about median earnings and student loan debt for each institution. This information empowers families to make informed decisions about educational attainment — a critical ingredient for any marketplace to function properly.”