When choosing a university for pursuing higher education, there are many factors that influence one’s decision. Locations, curriculum, religious, and non-profit or for-profit. It is commonly assumed that a for-profit university provide a better education and after graduation opportunity. However, that is not necessarily case. Attending a non-profit school is more rewarding than attending a for-profit university because that individual attending a non-profit university will have a better chance for placement in their field and more opportunities in their chosen profession.
Applicable Sociological Concepts
There are sociological theories that apply to the social issues associated with non-profit universities. First, there is the Achieved Status (A Brief List of Sociological Concepts and Terms, 2014). Achieved status is an acquired status based on merit, earned or chosen as a result of actions, skills, abilities, or efforts (Crossman, 2014). A student’s performance dictates their outcome. The university also has opportunities to achieve the status. The understanding is that their students are known for their skills, knowledge, and preparation for the workforce.
Another theory is the culture (A Brief List of Sociological Concepts and Terms, 2014).
The culture of society is such that an individual believing to have a desirable achieved status will ensure that they are afforded greater status within that society by virtue of the earned ascribed status. For some students, a smaller university, such as a non-profit university, allows individuals to prepare for their future. It gives more personalized attention and education and opens the door for more opportunities after graduation.
There are values of sociological research associated in non-profit universities. The first consideration is the implications for public policy. This could result in policy changes designed to favor non-profit institutions of higher education. The governmental support should be for higher education, instead of for-profit or non-profit. The federal government plays a role in higher education, but to what extent is still debatable. The overall goal should be based on ensuring all deserving students have access to obtaining a higher level of education and preparation for the future, not maintaining a high industry profit.
There is also the implications for employers. Employers will always search for the best candidate for the job, a status that varies based on cultural perceptions (Capperella, 2014). For some, the best person for the job is the one with the Ivy League degree, while others value the personal attention that smaller universities provide for their students. The cultural perception changes from job-to-job, employer-to-employer.
Lastly, it is important to consider the implications for spouses of workaholics. Spouses will work to support their partners and will recommend the attendance of non-profit institutions of higher education to ensure their spouse is better able to further their career. When considering the sacrifice that is made when choosing to pursue higher education, it is important to ensure their investment is not being made without guarantee. They want the best opportunity for education and placement after the graduation.
There is evidence that supports the hypothesis that is being evaluated in this paper.
First, there is changing the reputations of higher education institutions are reflected in the job market (Reputation and brand in the changing world of higher education, 2014). The conditions for the university should be based upon their brand in higher education. The changes that one might see is based upon the reputation and brand of the different types of the institutions. Therefore, the changes in how employers view higher education shifts the expectations in the job market after graduation.
Additionally, non-profit learning provides opportunities. Non-profit learning gives others the chance of excelling beyond what they would have otherwise been able to accomplish, thus providing candidates that may not otherwise have had a chance and as such offer further reputation boosts (Zaru, 2012). This means not every university provides an opportunity for individual success. Ryan Kwaku-Mensah a 16 year old student stated, “Higher Learning not only makes you want to learn more but it makes you want to live out what you learn, motivates me and is a kind of experience that just grips the student because you see things you would never see in your own neighborhood” (Zaru, 2012). Individual and personalized attention allows for better learning and understanding. The preparation for after graduation has proven to give non-profit universities an upper hand over for-profit universities.
While it cannot be stated that non-profit organizations are better than for-profit organizations, it is clear that non-profit organizations offer certain students a better chance for success and provide more opportunities for a certain type of individual. Preparing the student for their future career endeavors is the main purpose of a university, whether it is for-profit or non-profit. A non-profit university can open the door for some students and provide them more opportunities than a for-profit university can. Weighing the pros and cons for each, and their desired outcome will allow one to make the decision for which option is best for them.
- Capperella, J. (2014). This Simple Strategy Will Make You the Top Candidate for Any Job. Entrepreneur. Retrieved 18 November 2014, from http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/231354
- Changinghighereducation.com. (2014). Reputation and brand in the changing world of higher education. Retrieved 18 November 2014, from http://www.changinghighereducation.com/for-profit-higher-education/
- Crossman, A. (2014). Achieved Status. About. Retrieved 18 November 2014, from http://sociology.about.com/od/A_Index/g/Achieved-Status.htm
- Gnrptk.org. (2014). A Brief List of Sociological Concepts and Terms. Retrieved 18 November 2014, from http://gnrptk.org/attachments/File/sociological_concepts.pdf
- Zaru, D. (2012). Maryland non-profit offers disadvantaged kids opportunities. Schoolsofthought.blogs.cnn.com. Retrieved 18 November 2014, from http://schoolsofthought.blogs.cnn.com/2012/11/26/maryland-non-profit-offers-disadvantaged-kids-opportunities/