Manoj Patankar Weighs in on “Dropout Crisis” in American Universities

A new report offers an analysis of present dropout rates among American universities, and connects the concern to a need for financial aid reform. Academic administrator Manoj Patankar responds to potential resolutions.

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New York, New York (PRWEB) February 04, 2013

According to a recent article from The Huffington Post, a new report entitled The American Dream 2.0——takes a deeper look at growing dropout rates among American university students. Authors of the report, collected from “an influential group of college presidents, civil rights leaders and advocates sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation,” suggest that the present “dropout crisis” is one that is connected to financial aid provisions and calls for reform in the area. Although the data presented in the report should cause concern over the current state of higher education, Manoj Patankar, academic administrator and professor, notes that institutions may respond with new funding initiatives that could draw away from the overall quality of the education itself.

Noting that “46 percent of America's college students and 63 percent of African American students [do not] graduate college within six years,” The American Dream 2.0 report suggests that those figured could change if the $226 billion financial aid system was restructured. Specifically, “customizing financial aid to better serve part-time and other non-traditional students, and tying aid to a school's outcomes, such as graduation rates, instead of just enrollment.”

While some may suggest that the current dropout rates are linked to students feeling that the education is not worth the ever-increasing costs, the article reinforces the American Dream 2.0 suggestions with data collected from a recent Hart Research Associates poll. The poll found that “Eighty-four percent of poll respondents noted that completing college is either ‘absolutely essential’ or ‘very important’.” As an educator who has encouraged a lot of student growth and resources through programs he helped institute at Saint Louis University, Manoj Patankar agrees that higher education is as important as ever.

However, Manoj Patankar cautions that some institutions may focus on the final result, rather than the actual quality of the education that is offered. For example he explains that a new approach to funding could lead to a “potentially undue emphasis on pass rates which could result in grade inflation and broader loss of credibility for American universities.” As such, Manoj Patankar encourages a more careful analysis of funding criteria so that students are still given a chance to pursue challenging education and an opportunity to progress.

ABOUT:

Manoj Patankar is a leading educator and academic administrator who has greatly contributed to the field of aviation, workplace safety, engineering and sustainability. In addition to serving as a university professor in varied fields, Manoj Patankar has fulfilled immense administrative and leadership duties as the Vice President for Academic Affairs and the Chief Academic Office at Saint Louis University. Manoj Patankar is also the author of several widely-read texts on aviation safety and has won several awards for his academic research and publications.


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