Too Much College Causes Revolutions?

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In what may be one of the more creative attempts to interpret the news, Troy Camplin over at the Pope Center for Higher Education Policy argues that the reason for the unrest in Egypt is that the country has too many college graduates. Really.

As he explains:

In Egypt, the median age is 24. At present more than 25 percent of the population is attending or has attended university, with about a 50 percent dropout rate. University education in Egypt is free. The unemployment rate in Egypt is comparable to that in the United States: 9.4 percent. Yet, 87.2 percent of the unemployed are between the ages of 15 and 29, and… unemployment among Egyptian college graduates is ten times higher than for those who did not go to college.

The result is unemployment. The result is revolution.

He goes on to argue that, because many college graduates in the United States are also having trouble finding jobs, eventually this too could reach crisis proportions:

An economic bubble like the one we just had in housing merely causes a recession or a depression, with an increase in unemployment. An education bubble, however, can lead to a revolution.

Camplin is correct when he points out that unemployed people are dissatisfied and unemployed college graduates are perhaps more dissatisfied, but Hosni Mubarak has been president of the country since 1981. Protesters, jobless college graduates they may be, are protesting their country’s lack of free elections or free speech.

These are probably more important problems. [Image via]

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer