Fatema Hanif New York

Title: Free Education for all.

Community colleges should be free.

Dear President Elect,

Congratulations! It is one of the happiest moments for our country that you have been elected president and as a resident, I believe from the bottom of my heart that no other candidate was as qualified as you. I know as President you have many things to do and your main attention is to develop our country. The true development of a country depends on education and as a high school senior, I have serious concerns about going to college. It should be a very exciting moment for me, but you will be surprised to hear that I can't sleep at night. I worry about the high cost of a college education. I’m concerned about the debt I may have when I graduate from college if I take out loans. Therefore, I believe community colleges should be free, and I am asking you to pass legislation to make this happen.

In the United States of America, colleges are very expensive . If you look at college tuition fees in this country you will see how difficult it is to continue college studies if students come from low or even middle-income families. For a 4 year CUNY college the cost is $6330 per year and for a 2 year college it is $4800 per year.   SUNY senior college charges $6330 per year and for community colleges it is $4800 per year. (The City University of New York). Moreover, for private four-year colleges, the average yearly tuition is $32,410. Certainly, many US families cannot afford the cost of college and it is almost impossible to afford what private universities are charging. (Big Future)

People believe that the United States of America is one of the richest countries in the world. This may be true, but almost 22% of its people are low income families and they cannot afford college. Low income for a 4-member family is considered to be $47,248 per year.(PBS Newshour) It is really difficult for these families to budget for food, clothes, rent, medication and then college costs. Therefore, they give less priority to college and decide not to go to college because they can’t afford it.  College is a luxury for them, but it shouldn't be. It should be a necessity. As a result, they have to choose low income jobs that only help them to get by. We will be grateful for the rest of our lives if the government helps us to get rid of this problem.

Some people may argue that college students can get financial aid or scholarships to continue their studies. However, sometimes students do not receive enough financial aid because they are not able to apply for it or they don’t receive it. On the other hand, low income students may not obtain scholarships or they worry about repaying the debt if they do get loans. Therefore, it is still hard for them to get into colleges and continue their studies (US News). Moreover, students that apply for scholarships require good grades on the SAT or ACT, a good GPA, strong letters of recommendation, and extracurricular activities. Because of the requirements not every student is eligible for scholarships.

To conclude, if community colleges are free for students then they could afford to continue their studies. I hope you would consider this topic as an important issue and do something for us immediately.


Fatema Hanif

The Flushing International High School.