Rising Costs of College Tuition Can you afford it?
As Bainbridge High School seniors are filling out the Common Application or Coalition Application to apply to colleges around the United States and abroad, increasing cost of tuition is a common factor. Colleges vary in size, majors, and curriculum, but cost is the one common factor among all institutions of higher education.
The cost of college tuition is creeping higher and higher, creating more and more student debt each year in the United States. About 75% of all graduates from a four-year school come out in debt. Is the expensive tuition too much for career-seeking students or is the cost worth the degree? Let’s get some background information before we answer that vital question.
According to a New York Times article, “Tuition at a private university is now roughly three times as expensive as it was in 1974, costing an average of $31,000 a year; public tuition, at $9,000, has risen by nearly four times” (Davidson). It is evident that tuition is costing more each year, creating a personal challenge for college students and graduates. With tuition so high, many young adults cannot afford the expense and are not able to explore higher learning. Now, this is a problem. If high school students cannot attend college because of the high tuition, there will be more United States citizens who will not have the opportunity of higher education. In 2015, a study conducted by Lumina Foundation, Affordability Benchmark, was developed to measure the affordability of college. From the results, of the 2,000 colleges examined, almost half of the colleges were affordable to well-off students, those with families earning annual incomes over $160,000. On the other hand, about one-third of the examined colleges were affordable to students from a families with incomes of $100,000 (Bidwell). It is evident that colleges are too expensive for families to afford, leading to many young adults not exploring post high school education.
What do our Bainbridge High School students believe? Is tuition too expensive or does it correctly correlate with higher education? According to Bainbridge High student, Anika Lesko,
“College tuition is too expensive because although college sets you up for a good job, the return from a higher education still may not be enough to pay for all the debt you receive from tuition. Sometimes, college tuition digs too deep of a hole”.
As these Bainbridge High School seniors fill out the Common Application or Coalition Application to apply to college, many of them will also be filling out the FAFSA®, Free Application for Federal Student Aid, a form to apply for financial aid. If college seems too expensive for you, but you truly want to attend, talk to your Bainbridge High School counselor for more information to make your future a reality.