Increased Tuition Increases Some More
If you were maybe sticking your head in the sand and hoping to wait this economic slump out by pretending it’s not happening, then don’t read these denial-crushing articles.
The New York Times is reporting that college students (and/or their ‘rents) are paying more for less. Excellent.
College students are covering more of what it costs to educate them, even as most colleges are spending less on students, according to a new study.
The study, based on data that colleges and universities report to the federal government, also found that the share of higher education budgets that goes to instruction has declined, while the portion spent on administrative costs has increased.
And the Associated Press has an equally optimism-crushing article about tuition rates rising at exactly the same time that college-money stockpiles have been decimated by a sucky stock market and limited access to second mortgages.
Most high school seniors and their families have not made final college plans for next fall. But they know this: It’s probably going to cost more than they had planned.
Even in good economic times, states and colleges have largely failed to hold tuition increases in line with inflation. Now as the slumping economy forces states to slash spending, students can expect the sharpest increases in years.
I would advise next year’s freshmen to wait a few years on attending the four-year schools and head to a community college instead. Unfortunately, that’s what everyone else is probably going to do, which means it’ll be hard to get in, let alone get the classes they’ll need. Taking online versions of some general ed courses through a community college would circumvent the overcrowding issue (making sure the credits are transferable is a necessary step in that process).
Taking a gap year doesn’t really work because, you know, that takes money.
The only other option I can see would be for students to head off to college as planned, but to take a light enough course load so that working part-time won’t derail the knowledge absorption.
There’s also the live-at-home, work-at-the-convenience-store option, which will no doubt inspire all takers to higher-education greatness once they’ve escaped and have catapulted themselves into college and beyond. Those kids will do whatever it takes to never ever have to return to either home or minimum wage. See how I pulled that shred of optimism out at the last second?
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Posted by Alexa Harrington