Staff editorial: The real cost of college

September 23, 2019

College. To many, it is a daunting thing to think about: moving away, starting over and paying immense amounts of tuition. Only a handful of the many students applying to college are lucky enough to receive full ride academic and/or athletic scholarships that can make their decision and commitment easier.


According to The College Board, “two-thirds of full-time students paid for college with the help of financial aid in the form of grants and scholarships.” With an average of 67 percent of students receiving money from others to pay for their education, the question becomes why are colleges able to charge so much for tuition?


The average cost of tuition for the 2018-19 school year was about $26,000 for out of state colleges, $35,000 at private colleges and $10,000 for in state colleges, according to The College Board. For students, this difference in price can often persuade them to choose an in-state college over an out of state college or private institution.


If college were more affordable, this problem could be avoided and students would have more options as to where they would like to attend school. Many families may tell their child that they need to stay in state or attend a community college to prevent the excessive loans that college is known to cause.


With the majority of prospective college students looking for a way to find scholarships and loans, colleges could consider that with lower prices, more students would be able to afford to attend their institution. However, colleges continue to raise their tuition prices as a way to increase revenue, causing students to be more and more in debt.


Some of the candidates for the 2020 election are trying to provide free college for American citizens. In general, mostly democrats are behind the idea of debt free college.


These candidates want to lower the price of college because the cost of tuition including housing, meal plans and other amenities is much more than just the cost of tuition itself. However, by making college debt-free with grants through the government would just cause debt for the government.


By creating more deficit of funds within the government, this would only lead to an increase in tax dollars that citizens would owe. Therefore, the entire country would be paying for the new generation to attend college, which would ultimately cause people to still pay for tuition through their tax dollars.


On the other hand, many other countries such as France, Greece and Germany have systems currently in place where they are able to pay for full, or almost full, tuition for students attending college. Some American students look to international schools in countries that offer free tuition as an outlet to reduce the debt caused by college.


Oftentimes, the expense and inconvenience of moving to a different country are enough for students to stay in their own country. In the United States, more people come into the country than out of the country for college.


Overall, the extensive costs of college could be potentially reduced by debt-free programs that pay for tuition, but it would only raise taxes for tax payers. This would lead to conflicts because many would be against paying for current students’ college tuition when they are still in-debt from their own tuition that they are obligated to pay.

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Orange Media publications are official student-produced mediums of news and information published by the Journalism students of Olentangy Orange High School. The publications have been established as a designated public forum for student journalists to inform, educate and entertain readers as well as for the discussion of issues of concern to their audience. They  will not be reviewed or restrained by school officials, adults or sources prior to publication.

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