Hi 81 / Lo 73
|Volume 71, Issue 48,
Thursday, November 3, 2005
Lourdes Castillo James Davis
Breaking news: college is getting more expensive
Ah, to be a college student in 2005.
Some are lucky enough to have family funds to help pay for the rising costs of school. Others work one or more jobs to pay tuition, which for many is the fast lane to burnout.
The government isn--t helping in all of this. Countless students across the country rely on loans, grants and scholarships to offset the costs of getting a degree. But Washington, in an effort to keep the deficit from spiraling further out of control, keeps tightening the purse strings on higher education.
It--s not that our representatives in the federal government don--t understand the importance of an educated population. Some are pushing for rewards for those who major in math and science disciplines. Part of what has made America so powerful during the last century has been its strong scientific community, but that dominance is threatened by increasing numbers of math and science grads coming out of Asia.
Providing incentives and financial aid for math and science students is a solution for that problem. Still, students in other disciplines will remain under pressure if the current round of cuts becomes a pattern.
A College Board report issued Oct. 18 revealed that tuition is actually rising faster than inflation. The cause, believe it or not, is insufficient funding from state and federal government. When states receive less money, public universities are forced to find funds elsewhere, and that usually means tuition hikes. Combine that with cuts in individual aid, such as federal Pell Grants, and students in both public and private colleges suffer.
The world has changed drastically in the past few years. With an expensive war in Iraq and a string of costly natural disasters, it--s logical to expect that everyone will feel the effects of a sputtering economy.
Until things improve, though, we hope those on Capitol
Hill and in state governments don--t forget the importance of the nation--s
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