The True Cost of College

As high school students begin to look into their future, for many, they believe that the most beneficial choice for them is to attend a four year, private university. Culturally, this is the belief that is instilled at a young age. However, with the cost of college skyrocketing over the last few decades, this goal has been pushed further and further out of reach for many lower- and middle-class families. Even some federal solutions to this problem are failing to adjust to modern times. The Pell Grant is one of most well known federal financial aid packages in the country, yet it only increased 12% from 1975 to 2012. In comparison, the average cost of tuition at private universities has inflated 128% in the same time period. While there are cheaper alternatives to such universities, these often come at the cost of lackluster education, fewer amenities and less personalized teaching. 

People frequently argue the solution to this problem; some say the government should pay for students attendance at such institutions, others argue that such a system would drain taxpayers’ wallets even more and would continue the same cycle. However, what can’t be argued is the importance of education. Education has always been an equalizer for people coming from all sorts of backgrounds. No matter the circumstances, someone can improve their standing in society through acquiring a sufficient education, but such prices take away this possibility. I encourage you to create and inform your own opinion on how this issue should be fixed, but no matter what your decision is, it should be known that this is an issue that must be fixed. 

 

Statistics courtesy of http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/ERPLJM502731047/OVIC?u=nysl_nc_cchsl&sid=OVIC&xid=01919c53.