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Old 02-11-2011, 10:32 AM
 
834 posts, read 2,197,536 times
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My opinion is to have him finish school, whatever degree, school (perhaps closer to home?). If he's allowed to drop out he won't go back to finish - the "perfect" time doesn't exist. Take less classes per semester, find tutors to help with subjects he's struggling. Don't give up. It may be more costly to you but that's the inheritance you're giving him: education.

We know that most jobs require high school education (most likely a ok-paying, meh type of job). But in my opinion...the jobs you want your kids to aspire to get into that pay better and actually drive you into a career require you having at least a bachelor's degree. So to me, the bachelor's degree is the minimum they should have.
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Old 02-11-2011, 10:44 AM
 
12,915 posts, read 19,792,997 times
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Just to clarify, this son is in his 2nd semester of his sophomore year. He did very well (3.4) as a first semester freshman, then got 3 D's his 2nd semester. This past fall he managed mostly C's.

I can't change the commitment we made to our kids to pay for their college. It means a great deal to my husband to be able to do it for them. I have made it clear that we will no longer pay for do-overs though. If he fails a class he needs to pay for the summer session.

He has held jobs while in HS and over the summer, but he isn't good with finances. In one hand and out the other whenever he gets some cash. We have him on a budget to cover food and gas. He sometimes runs short, but I am pretty strict about that. And, he is a hard worker. While home for the holidays we had a freak snowstorm, and he made quite a bit of money shoveling for neighbors.

We picked his college because it is known for having strong support for learning disabilities. I know the services are there, I just have to trust he avails himself of them (he says he does). He has met with his advisor, but didn't feel as though he was getting any real guidance. The meeting focused mostly on what classes he needed to get the degree he originally sought (mechanical engineering). He did pretty well in algebra and geometry, but horribly in calculus, which he needed to pass with a C to move on. I see no chance of him making it through the mechanical engineering program.

His oldest brother did well in college, and is almost done with his masters. His younger brother is in an honors college, and his grades are excellent. Because of the IEP process, we know this middle son has a comparable IQ, which I think is what my husband is fixating on. He believes the smarts are there, and if he just applies himself more, he can do it. I disagree, and really wonder if we are doing
this boy a disservice by pushing him to follow the same path as his brothers.

I've been on the education forum, but that further confuses the issue. So many students are writing about how college is an expensive mistake that they wish they hadn't made.
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Old 02-11-2011, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Long Island
6,171 posts, read 2,565,651 times
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Just because someone has a LD doesn't mean they're doing their best and that it's the LD keeping them from succeeding.

I think it's a great idea to have your son pay to re-take a class if he fails. I understand the commitment you made to your kids, although I agree with previous posters that in general it's better if kids have a finacial interest in their own educations - loans, summer jobs, etc.

Is the school strictly tech, or are liberal arts an option? I'm surprised they offer algebra and geometry - I have an engineering degree and we started with Calc I(if you didn't have AP credit) and had to do at least 4 semesters of Calculus/ODE's/PDE's. It does not sound like he's cut out for ME if he's having trouble with his first semester of Calc.

I also agree that hardly any college sophomores know what they want to pursue, but I do think the degree is important. I never had a job in engineering, but I use concepts I learned in college all the time in finance. He needs to take the lead in figuring out another major - if he doesn't, he's not ready for college at this point and it's time to work for a while until he is ready.
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Old 02-11-2011, 11:12 AM
 
11,672 posts, read 21,240,989 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattie View Post
He has held jobs while in HS and over the summer, but he isn't good with
We picked his college because it is known for having strong support for learning disabilities. I know the services are there, I just have to trust he avails himself of them (he says he does). He has met with his advisor, but didn't feel as though he was getting any real guidance. The meeting focused mostly on what classes he needed to get the degree he originally sought (mechanical engineering). He did pretty well in algebra and geometry, but horribly in calculus, which he needed to pass with a C to move on. I see no chance of him making it through the mechanical engineering program..
Engineering is one of the most difficult programs to get through- and you are right, it kicks in the sophomore year with DifEQ Calculus, etc. Has he taken any intro to business classes? Or is there an Industrial Distrubution major at his school- that is generally a good mix of Business & Engineering curriculum to prepare students to take jobs on the business side of a techical company (like Supply Chain/ Logistics).


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattie View Post
I've been on the education forum, but that further confuses the issue. So many students are writing about how college is an expensive mistake that they wish they hadn't made.


I wouldn't put a lot of stock in the Education or Universities forums on City-Data. There are - strangely- a lot of people there who are very anti-education. And there are a lot of other posters who are CURRENTLY in a bad situation (recent graduate, no job yet) because of the CURRENT economic environment.....they don't have the foresight to realize we will not be in a permanent recession and their college degrees (or master's) WILL pay off in the long run.

Here are some facts regarding college degrees & income that I pulled for another thread. The numbers I quoted in my previous post on your thread were directionally correct, but not exactly what I remembered. I think this should be eye-opening as to the life you can expect your son to lead if he gives up on his college education in TODAY's world.-->

The report (link below) graphs the average salary in constant 2008 dollars from 1980 to 2008 (mid-recession). Interestingly enough, the average salary (in 2008 dollars) of a college gradauate has remained fairly stagnant through the years: $52,300 for males in 1980 and $55,000 in 2008. However, the average salary for someone with only a GED/High School Diploma has decreased by 38% in the past 28 years. In 1980, a male with a GED/HSD made an average salary of $44,200 (15% less than his college educated friends). By 2008, a male with a GED/HSD made an average salary of $32,000 (42% less than his college educated friends).

Male -HSD/ GED Average Salary -Bachelors Degree or Higher
1980 -$44,200 -$52,300
1985 -$40,000 -$54,800
1990 -$36,300 -$52,300
1995 -$33,900 -$52,700
2000 -$36,300 -$57,500
2005 -$33,100 -$55,100
2008 -$32,000 -$55,000


Even after counting the 4 years someone could have worked instead of going to college, the average college graduate male with a 40 year career will earn ON AVERAGE, AT LEAST $792,000 MORE than someone who didn't go to college.


The gap is still growing.....In 2000, GED/HSD males made 37% less than college educated males. By 2005, it had climbed to 40% less. Just 3 years later in 2008, it grew again to be 42% less. If the gap continues to expand that rapidly, by the time this college generation graduates, the average male GED/HSD salary will be $19,190 (in 2008 dollars) and the average male College Grad salary will still be in the $55,000-65,000 range.

The data was pulled from this goverment agency if you want to learn more.
http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=77
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Old 02-11-2011, 11:38 AM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,333,321 times
Reputation: 32238
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mattie View Post
Just to clarify, this son is in his 2nd semester of his sophomore year. He did very well (3.4) as a first semester freshman, then got 3 D's his 2nd semester. This past fall he managed mostly C's.

I can't change the commitment we made to our kids to pay for their college. It means a great deal to my husband to be able to do it for them. I have made it clear that we will no longer pay for do-overs though. If he fails a class he needs to pay for the summer session.

He has held jobs while in HS and over the summer, but he isn't good with finances. In one hand and out the other whenever he gets some cash. We have him on a budget to cover food and gas. He sometimes runs short, but I am pretty strict about that. And, he is a hard worker. While home for the holidays we had a freak snowstorm, and he made quite a bit of money shoveling for neighbors.

We picked his college because it is known for having strong support for learning disabilities. I know the services are there, I just have to trust he avails himself of them (he says he does). He has met with his advisor, but didn't feel as though he was getting any real guidance. The meeting focused mostly on what classes he needed to get the degree he originally sought (mechanical engineering). He did pretty well in algebra and geometry, but horribly in calculus, which he needed to pass with a C to move on. I see no chance of him making it through the mechanical engineering program.

His oldest brother did well in college, and is almost done with his masters. His younger brother is in an honors college, and his grades are excellent. Because of the IEP process, we know this middle son has a comparable IQ, which I think is what my husband is fixating on. He believes the smarts are there, and if he just applies himself more, he can do it. I disagree, and really wonder if we are doing
this boy a disservice by pushing him to follow the same path as his brothers.
First: Do not compare him with his brothers! He is his own person with his own strengths and weaknesses. And I'd get real itchy if it were my husband who wanted to push this son (a unique individual) to follow the same path as his brothers.

Thanks for the info on his job record and all. Certainly sounds like he knows how to work hard. (I was wondering if the party boy label applied. Doesn't sound like it does. And a LOT of people that age don't handle money well. Hopefully, he'll learn as he grows older.)

You need to talk with him one on one (I'd take him to lunch without Dad) and find out what he wants. Talk to him about what he's good at. Let him acknowledge what he's bad at. There is no shame in changing majors. I know a lot of people with so-called learning disabilities who are smarter than billy blue. But if he doesn't have an "engineering brain" he just isn't going to cut it. What does he love? What has he studied so far that he got excited about? What did he do well in? Focus on those things as a future line of studies. I have a growing suspicion that if he's allowed to spread his own wings he'll do much better.

Good luck. I'm on your side on this one.
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Old 02-11-2011, 11:55 AM
 
852 posts, read 1,135,836 times
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From what you've added, it seems like changing majors is the best course for your son. And you're right about advisors. Typically, they just check to make sure students are taking the right classes for the degree. It's more schedule making than advising (sad, but true). The best advice college students get come from profs in the field, but that means establishing a relationship with them.

It sounds like otherwise he's doing all of the right things, so perhaps it really is a matter of heading in a different direction.
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Old 02-11-2011, 11:59 AM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
3,359 posts, read 10,635,552 times
Reputation: 3812
I'll give you this link to the only college in the country that specializes in students with learning disabilities in case it can be of any help to you. Beacon College for ADHD Students, LD Students and gifted LD - Colleges for Learning Disabilities
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Old 02-11-2011, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Denver area
21,141 posts, read 22,112,687 times
Reputation: 35536
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hopes View Post
I don't see how his parents paying for his education is relevant. They are paying for the educations of all three of their children. Clearly, this family has statistically proven that parents paying for their children's educations isn't the cause of irresponsible students since they have two others who are doing well. Just because THIS child has a learning disability they shouldn't be paying for his education like they do their other children? That's illogical to me.
Has nothing to do with his disability. It just doesn't make sense to keep paying for something when there is not acceptable progress toward a desired goal. Perhaps that type of education isn't the best thing for him. Maybe his isn't really trying - I don't know - as someone else mentioned, having a LD does not preclude one from being lazy or not applying him/herself. Or maybe he simply needs to change majors. They need to sit down and figure out a path - be it college, technical/trade school...something that will enable this child to earn a living and support himself. What is happening right now is clearly not working. I do feel he needs to have ownership of some kind in this investment - it is his future after all. Be it financial or maintaining some kind of GPA or something. But that's just me...

ETA: His parents paying isn't the problem....but maybe they should be paying for something different or more appropriate for his needs...

Last edited by maciesmom; 02-11-2011 at 12:51 PM..
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Old 02-11-2011, 12:15 PM
 
32,538 posts, read 29,333,321 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hopes View Post
Just because THIS child has a learning disability they shouldn't be paying for his education like they do their other children? That's illogical to me.
Hopes, that thought never even crossed my mind. Totally not on my radar.
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Old 02-11-2011, 02:00 PM
 
852 posts, read 1,135,836 times
Reputation: 1042
I couldn't know for certain what is happening with the OP's son in his courses, but because I teach at the developmental (the new word for remedial) level, I see many students with disabilities. For these students, the shift to a college level workload is much harder to negotiate. Much harder. College instructors don't slow down, and accommodations for disable students usually only stipulate that instructors must provide extra time for tests or copies of power point presentations. That's not much, and often it's not enough.

OP, did your son have to take developmental courses during his freshman year? That could explain why he did better in first year than he's doing in his second.
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