Cathedral Round-Up #13: Do Universities do Anything Good?

A commentator last month asked if universities do anything good, so I though I would begin this month’s Cathedral Round-Up by searching for some good news.

Caltech seems to be still doing real research:

click to enlarge

And some researchers at MIT are collaborating with folks at Mass General Hospital to improve methods for placing epidurals:

More than 13 million pain-blocking epidural procedures are performed every year in the United States. Although epidurals are generally regarded as safe, there are complications in up to 10 percent of cases, in which the needles are inserted too far or placed in the wrong tissue.

A team of researchers from MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital hopes to improve those numbers with a new sensor that can be embedded into an epidural needle, helping anesthesia doctors guide the needle to the correct location.

Since inserting a giant needle into your spine is really freaky, but going through natural childbirth is hideously painful, I strongly support this kind of research.

Meanwhile, of course:


(note: I don’t have the link to the PDF.)



LSAT results by ethnicity





Picture 12


Picture 13


Forbes notes:

More than half of Americans under the age of 25 who have a bachelor’s degree are either unemployed or underemployed. According to The Christian Science Monitor, nearly 1 percent of bartenders and 14 percent of parking lot attendants have a bachelor’s degree.

Adding additional degrees is no guarantee of employment either. According to a recent Urban Institute report, nearly 300,000 Americans with master’s degrees and over 30,000 with doctorates are on public relief. …

Unless you have a “hard” skill, such as a mastery of accounting, or a vocational certificates (e.g., in teaching) your liberal arts education generally will not equip you with the skill set that an employer will need.

Obviously colleges still do some good things. Much of the research I cite here in this blog originated at a college of some sort. And of course, if you are careful and forward thinking, you can use college to obtain useful skills/information.

But between the years, money, and effort students spend, not to mention the absurd political indoctrination, college is probably a net negative for most students.

A few doctors in the 1400s probably saved the lives of their patients, but far more killed them.

Caveat emptor.


5 thoughts on “Cathedral Round-Up #13: Do Universities do Anything Good?

  1. Well played darling

    Though stuff like intell a about black-holes seems pointless. Intresting bu5 pointless. Like the dinosaur nerds

    Looking at your graphics remind me we as a people are surpassed the point where guys like me with median iq’s are dumb assess who can’t make it through the better paying college programs. Within 20 years the dudes with 120 iqs will be the new dumb assess

    The more that trend accelerates, the less college will pay out for individuals or society


    • Thanks.
      Interesting stuff–like movies, good art, and dinosaurs–is enjoyable. I like living in a world with such things, even if they aren’t really “useful” in a quantifiable way. I also like living in a world where people can get jobs, afford a place to live, and start families. Priorities.


      • Yup priorities

        I dated a sort of college professor; 80% or more of her cohorts added no value to the world or students.

        She was teaching while working on her PhD. I was fairly surprised with how little they all new about the world and there areas of expertise


  2. Cal-Tech is researching space. What if the entire idea of space is a false construct designed to foster doubt about the existence of a creator God?
    Do your own research for at least a day before laughing uproariously and dismissing this concept as insanity or retardation. I am not the smartest person in the world but I did graduate both high school and college and currently support a wife and five kids. I learned all the same things in school that the people who think this is crazy did. I internalized what I was taught and got decent grades.
    Again- Do your own research. The veil is lifting.
    Peace be with you.


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