College is place where people can further their knowledge in hopes of getting their degree and working in a career that they have dreamed of their whole lives. Most people don’t see college as something that could leave them struggling for the rest of their lives. Millions of high school students and families nationwide have one concern on their mind: how will we pay for tuition? A lot of people use student loans to help pay for the large expense of tuition. But that blessing has come back to hurt many of the people that used it. Loans leave students thousands of dollars in debt after they graduate, and with a high interest rate, the price only gets larger. Statistics to back this up are truly extraordinary.
First, let's analyze how tuition cost have changed over the years. Take Stanford University, for example, in 1980–81 tuition for one year was $6285. Now let's take a look at some recent Stanford tuition prices. In 2011–12, the price of tuition to attend Stanford University for one year was a staggering $40,050. Isn't that a horrific statistic? The scary part is the fact that this is not happening just at Stanford University. This is happening at colleges all around the country. In studies done by the Commonfund Institute, the inflation rate for college tuition in fiscal year 2011 was 2.3%. This was double the rate of inflation in 2009. With the cost of attending university skyrocketing, most students are forced to use financial aid. The most common form of financial aid is student loans. Although they come in handy at first, the long-term effects on student loans can be damaging to most people. I don't know about you, but as a junior in high school who is looking for different in opportunities to further my education, high tuition prices can look very startling.
Student loans may seem like a blessing at first, but after graduation, it turns into people's worst nightmare. The average cost first student debt is $23,200, but some people have it a lot worse than that. Take Tara Spalty, for example. She attended college with the major of Chinese medicine. After graduating years ago, Tara is a staggering $280,000 in debt. She is most likely going to spend the rest of her life paying off that debt. There can be serious consequences if your debt is not paid off in time. The government will step in and bar you from doing certain things. If you are looking to get certain business licenses, you will not be able to. Money will be taken out of your paycheck and given back to the university. Also, your credit will go down tremendously, making you unable to receive loans for essentials such as houses and cars.
Although many people have talked about ways college cost could be lowered, few things have actually been done. President Barack Obama has threatened colleges to lower government funding if tuition isn’t reduced, giving them an incentive to do so. Other solutions, such as increasing technology to lower the number of staff and having Congress monitor the changes in tuition. I feel as if all of these solutions could have an impact on the financial lives of graduated students and students looking to further their education.
I feel that if colleges could just lower their tuition prices, many people’s lives could be made a lot easier. Students wouldn’t be inclined to use student loans on their entire college cost, meaning that they wouldn’t have to constantly worry about how they will pay off their debt well after they graduate. Lowering tuition could mean more students getting higher education, and a better quality of life.