Los Angeles, CA –March 15, 2016– Today, the total amount of student loan debt stands at $1.3 trillion nationally. The average student loan for 2015 will cost $35,000 or more for every student. Meanwhile, the current delinquency rate is 27%, meaning more than one out of every four graduates will become delinquent on their “non-bankruptcy-dischargeable” loans, a cost absorbed by the federal government and paid to the universities, regardless of the number of graduates who actually default on their loans. The cycle of easily accessible student loans, high tuition, and low starting salaries has resulted in a system chock-full of inefficiencies that have come under scrutiny by a number of notable economists and institutions, including the Harvard Graduate School of Education which, in a recent report suggests that today’s “college for all” mentality is holding back the current generation of young adults and advocates “directing resources to occupational certificates and other non-degree-based programs that prepare students for ‘middle skill’ jobs—jobs that are difficult or impossible to outsource. These jobs require more than a high school diploma but something less than—or other than—a college degree.”
RRF (Recording Radio Film Connection) offers an externship model of education for “middle skill” jobs as defined by the Harvard Graduate School of Education, with career-oriented programs in music production, filmmaking, radio broadcasting and the culinary arts. RRF takes a pragmatic approach to getting participants into professional, working environments, enabling them to gain connections and experience while they train. By starting out inside the business as opposed to outside of it, graduates have a tremendous advantage on the competition and often know about and secure jobs before they have the chance of getting listed on various career sites.
Because career-oriented RRF programs cost an average of $10,000 and offer short-term financing plans to those who qualify, the institute sidesteps the common student loan trappings inherent in today’s higher education system by effectively meeting the demand for “middle skill” jobs. The program’s specialized, externship-based approach is in accord with the Harvard report recommendations that the United States “follow the model of Northern and Western European countries that have robust externship and non-degree programs” and serves as an exemplary model for viable alternatives to post high school education when more and more people are reconsidering the extraordinary costs of four-year college.
A large part of RRF’s success comes from its robust, up-to-the-minute job placement program. Along with private tutoring and career help for up to a year after graduation, the program has recently started “Connected” a weekly Google hangout with news of job openings in the music, film, radio and the culinary arts, airing every Monday at 11am, PST.
RRF CEO James Petulla and Consultant, Brian Kraft recently penned the eBook, “SKIP COLLEGE AND GET YOUR DREAM JOB. Finding Alternative Pathways to a Great Career” as a means to share their model for effective, hands-on training with the world. Petulla makes it clear that education itself is not the enemy. He says, “Don’t get us wrong, we think education is a wonderful thing, and advise you to get all the education you can afford. But don’t be that guy who graduates $100,000 in student loan debt and doesn’t have a job lined up. That’s the quickest way to kill your dreams.”