Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Chinese Youth Questions Worthiness of Education

Chinese youth: struggling for a promising future

Because of skyrocketing education cost, many Chinese youngsters relapse to the education-is-useless idea, says a report released by China Youth & Children Research Center on Wednesday.

The report, which profiles Chinese youngsters in the years from 2001 to 2005 on things like health, life style, education and career, blames insufficient government funding for education for the high cost, especially in college education. For many young people from rural area, their parents have to borrow money to pay for their college and end up in heavy debt, becoming even poorer.

The idea that education is useless was once rampant among Chinese youth during the early years of the country’s economic reform and openness. Many young people at that time dismissed the importance of going to school, when seeing people without much education become reach by selling clothes or fruits on their own. But in recent decades, education has been a hot pursuit as diplomas have been valued higher by employers, be it government agencies or large companies.

Now that more and more young adults receive college diplomas at ever-increasing costs, while the job market gets tougher, once again, some young people apparently start to question the worthiness of getting good education.

People under the age of 35 account for about 30 percent of the 14 million unemployed urban population. Also, 150 to 200 million young people from rural area are the so-called “extra rural labor force,” who are out portioned the lands available for farming and expected to move to cities looking for a living. Moreover, the enlarging-college-enrollment wave in the past five or six years have created a large body of college graduates competing for jobs, the report says. Today, gaining a college degree no longer guarantee a job with satisfying income.

Some other findings of the report:

  • Chinese youngsters are developing sexuality and start dating at younger ages. Also, young couples spend more money for romance than earlier generations.

  • More than 13 percent of young web users are addicted to the Internet, with the highest percentage, over 17 percent, among those between 13 and 17 years old.

  • Generally speaking, Chinese young people in those years (2001-2005) are becoming healthier, but still face certain health problems. For example, the number of diabetes patients aging 20 to 35 are increasing every year, while breast cancer is also spreading among young women.

----by Josie Liu
China Youth & Children Research Center


Lyn Jeffery said...

Hello Josie! Great blog, great post. I wonder if you could post a link to the actual report itself. I have poked around the CYCRC website but I can't find the report.

Thank you!

Josie Liu said...

Hi lyn,
i actually did a lot of search for that actual report but wasn't able to find it online. usually i put a link to each of my sources so long as there is one. sorry i couldn't be more helpful in this regard. thank you for stopping by my blog.

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