K.R. Louisiana

Affordable College

High college tuition is preventing access to higher education for average Americans.

Dear Next President;

As a ninth grader, I’m not able to vote in this election, but I will in the next one. I’ll also be in college, hopefully not paying as much as the current college students are. The total outstanding student loan debt in the U.S. is $1.2 trillion, that's the second-highest level of consumer debt behind only mortgages. This type of debt haunts about forty million Americans and is also affecting what and how they spend their money in the future. This rise in college cost has been a trend for years and is crippling today’s college students. Even though there are scholarships and grants most are still not enough to cover the cost. It’s forcing high school students to decide not to go to college and instead go straight into the workforce.

Young Americans today are delaying on a lot of milestones in life because their student loan debt is burying them. The rising tuition impacts students’ career choices in the future. In the article “The Side Effects of College Cost” by Chris Pumphrey, he states, “ The rise in college cost will delay students from buying necessities.” I agree because major life decisions like buying a house, getting married, or having kids are most likely postponed because of debt. So most people think the best way to avoid the debt is free college.

Many people assume that "free" college is actually free, but it isn't, according to Andrew P. Kelly. In his article, "The Problem is that Free College Isn't Free," Kelly suggests that the burden "simply shifts the costs from students to taxpayers." The enrollment to these “ free colleges” will increase and so will the cost. College debt will then burden taxpayers who most likely have student loans of their own burning holes in their wallets. Although I know better by now, I can not help thinking that if college can’t be free it should at least be affordable.

Do you want to live in a world where the debt of higher education haunts citizens who want to learn? This will continue happening if college tuition isn’t tamed and made affordable. This has hurt majority of Americans for years.Unfortunately, we have failed to create a general solution. The current president, Barack Obama, has made a proposal for two years of college to be free. Obama wants to help middle class citizens with college finances. I am definitely in favor, because it will give middle class students opportunities.

To conclude, if the heavy burden of student loan debt is not solved the young adults of the next generation will be lacking financial stability. The following generations will probably also have a greater amount of high schoolers that will decide that college isn’t worth the prolonged debt. I believe that higher education should be attainable to all Americans and I also believe debt shouldn’t get to the point where essential life decisions are pushed aside.