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上大学的学生越来越少。这是为什么呢?

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2020年07月04日

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Fewer Students Are Going To College. Why is that?

上大学的学生越来越少。这是为什么呢?

This fall, there were nearly 250,000 fewer students enrolled in college than a year ago, according to new numbers out Monday from the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, which tracks college enrollment by student.

全国学生信息交换研究中心周一公布的最新数据显示,今年秋季,美国大学入学人数比一年前减少了近25万。该中心按学生人数进行跟踪。

"That's a lot of students that we're losing," says Doug Shapiro, who leads the research center at the Clearinghouse.

“我们失去了很多学生,”该信息交换研究中心的负责人道格·夏皮罗说。

上大学的学生越来越少。这是为什么呢?

And this year isn't the first time this has happened. Over the past eight years, college enrollment nationwide has fallen about 11%. Every sector — public state schools, community colleges, for-profits and private liberal arts schools — has felt the decline, though it has been especially painful for small private colleges, where, in some cases, institutions have been forced to close.

这种情况今年已经不是第一次发生了。在过去八年中,全国高校入学率下降了约11%。每个部门——公立学校、社区大学、盈利性大学和私立文科学校——都感受到了这种下降,尽管小型私立大学尤其痛苦,在某些情况下,它们的机构已经被迫关闭。

"We're in a crisis right now, and it's a complicated one," says Angel Pérez, who oversees enrollment at Trinity College, a small liberal arts school in Hartford, Conn.

“我们现在正处于一个复杂的危机中,”安吉尔·佩雷斯说,他负责负责三一学院的招生工作,这是一所位于康涅狄格州哈特福德的小型文科学院。

Why is this happening?

为什么会发生这种情况?

The biggest factor for the years of decline is the strong economy. The last time U.S. college enrollment went up was 2011, at the tail end of the recession. As the economy gets better, unemployment goes down — it's currently at 3.5 % — and more people leave college, or postpone it, and head to work.

多年来经济衰退的最大原因是强劲的经济。上一次美国大学入学人数增加是在2011年经济衰退末期。随着经济好转,失业率下降——目前为3.5%——越来越多的人离开大学,或推迟学业,去工作。

上大学的学生越来越少。这是为什么呢?

When the recession hit a decade ago, the reverse happened: Many people, especially older adults, returned to college. That bump in college enrollment set records, and in some ways the current downturn is simply "colleges returning to more historic levels of enrollment," Shapiro says.

十年前经济衰退来袭时,情况正好相反:许多人,尤其是老年人,回到了大学。大学入学人数的激增创下了纪录,而在某些方面,目前的低迷只不过是“大学入学人数回到了历史水平,”夏皮罗说。

Even families who are able to afford higher education are starting to ask themselves whether the cost is worth it.

即使是能够负担得起高等教育的家庭也开始扪心自问,这样的花费是否值得。

The benefits of a degree

学位的好处

A strong economy and soaring college costs have made it even more difficult for colleges to persuade students to enroll.

强劲的经济和飞涨的大学学费使得大学更难说服学生入学。

And yet, employers still need skilled workers, whether it's a profession that requires a four-year degree, other jobs that require an associate degree, or skills or trades that need certificates or credentials. If fewer people are getting those credentials, those jobs often sit empty.

然而,雇主仍然需要有技能的工人,不管是需要四年学历的职业,还是需要大专学历的工作,还是需要证书或文凭的技能或行业。如果越来越少的人能拿到这些证书,那么这些工作通常都是空空如也。

上大学的学生越来越少。这是为什么呢?

Creative recruitment

创造性的招生

It's a simple solution: When you don't have enough students, it makes sense to find and recruit some additional students. In the 1970s and '80s, schools faced a similar enrollment crisis. Back then, colleges focused mainly on recruiting women. Today that resource is tapped out: Female students make up more than half of all enrollment.

这是一个简单的解决办法:当你没有足够的学生时,寻找和招募一些额外的学生是有意义的。在上世纪七八十年代,学校面临着类似的招生危机。当时,大学主要招收女性。如今,这一资源已被耗尽:女生占了全部入学人数的一半以上。

So the question now is, what is the next group of students for recruiters to target? Based on the shifting demographics in public schools, it's likely that Hispanics and first-generation college students are at the top of that list and will make up a greater share of any future increase in enrollment.

所以现在的问题是,招生员的下一组目标是什么学生?根据公立学校人口结构的变化,拉美裔和第一代大学生很可能是最受欢迎的,并且在未来的招生增长中会占据更大的份额。

Returning adults

重返(校园)的成年人

While a lot of recruiting focuses on high school students, many colleges might do well to look at another pool of potential students: adults returning to college. New research shows there are about 36 million Americans — mainly adults — who have some college and no degree. These students offer a huge opportunity for colleges, and in some communities they are far more prevalent than seniors in high school.

虽然很多大学的招生重点是高中生,但很多大学可能会考虑另一群潜在的学生:重返大学的成年人。新的研究表明,大约有3600万美国人——主要是成年人——上过一些大学,但没有学位。这些学生为大学(招生工作)提供了巨大的机会,在一些社区,他们比高中毕业生还要普遍。


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