Special Note: Please note that this scenario is meant to be read as entertainment, not as an accurate prediction of the future. Also note that the viewpoints and opinions that may come across in this scenario are not necessarily the viewpoints and opinions of the author.
In the future, the university will become a luxury for the wealthy. Unless both parents have well-paying jobs, or one parent makes an impressive salary, there is almost no chance for the middle class or lower middle class student to make the payments for an education. People like them will have to shift from part time work to full time work right out of high school. While banks and some corporations will continue giving out scholarship loans for suitably gifted students for many decades to come, government student loans will eventually be phased out altogether as a "paternalistic anachronism of socialism."
- A small compensation for a general decline in literacy will be significant improvements in fluency in foreign languages. It will not be considered anything unusual for native English speakers to have a smattering of Japanese and Mandarin too. Learning on the job, or more accurately on the way to and from work, will be seen as a normal route to career advancement. Customised course material of high quality, and at very reasonable cost, will be delivered by successors to the mobile phone, while on the move.
Would be university students who lack the requisite income may look to enter university for free through joining a modelling agency or an athletics team while in college - hoping to get scouted by a college or university. In this instance, failure to maintain high marks in their majors, or serious or disfiguring injury would lead to a requirement to pay full tuition fees. If one is lucky at that level, being drafted into professional media or sports will greatly increase their childrens' chances of being able to afford an university education. Graduates of college and university will further hone their skills in the work world and become members of the Establishment. By the time they retire at 65 or 75, they are already millionaires.