It was one of the most frequently repeated stories of the year: college students, particularly left-leaning college students, are intolerant…
If it sounds like a caricature… well, it is. If nothing else, pundits and politicians seem to forget that the majority of college students do not attend private institutions like Columbia or Middlebury or even elite publics like Berkeley or Madison.
40% of those in higher education attend community colleges. Two out of every three community college students experiences food insecurity; about half of community college students are housing insecure. About a quarter of all college students in the US are 25 or older. About the same percentage are single parents. 40% of undergraduate students work 30 hours a week or more. Almost three-quarters graduate with student loan debt – debt that they may well carry into retirement.
The idea that college students are sheltered and pampered isn’t just wrong; it’s insulting.
But that’s the story that’s gets told. Again and again and again.