4 answers

How can we make college cheaper in the future?

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Although we may be forced to pay ridiculous amounts to provide ourselves with an education, I hope that future generations won't have to do the same. #education #cost #higher-education #financial-aid #college

You right!!!Making college cheaper has to start with diff. factors. But government action affects public universities more, so I'm not sure if the price tag for expensive private universities will go down. But private universities offer financial aid&work-study programs. But many families dont qualify for those types of aid. This is all stuff that people probably already know, so my two cents would be investigating these colleges further. Are they truly as need-blind as they advertise? Whyare these the prices for education? Are colleges using this money for aid for others, or for things like gourmet dining/perks that don't contribute to education? How do colleges reconcile a for-profit status with providing education for underprivileged? Sorry for the long response. Just curious Angelina N.

4 answers

Victoria’s Answer


Hi Janina!

I don’t know if we will be able to make college less expensive “in the future” but, what I suggest instead is a more cost-conscious consumer-scholar! There are fairly simple options to help families make their college education investment more affordable.

  1. Dual enrollment opportunities: When high school students have the opportunity to take college credit-bearing courses while still in high school, it does a couple things. The first is it lowers their college tuition bill by the same number of credits they would have to take anyway. For example, if they take, say, English 101 while still in high school, they don’t have to take it at the collegiate level. Most times these offerings are at a deeply discounted rate, and are sometimes subsidized by a high school’s district or school board. The other thing it does is thrusts students directly into credit-bearing courses when they enroll in college since they likely will have taken the placement exam and prerequisites in high school. This saves a great deal of money that would have been spent on courses that are expensive yet aren’t counted towards the degree. Research has shown that students who take remedial/developmental education courses are at a higher risk for dropping out than those who do not, no matter how well they do in them. There are a couple of theories on that that I won’t belabor here. The point is, taking college credit courses while in high school lowers your college tuition bill.
  2. JuCo: The second thing I suggest students consider is attending community/junior college then transferring to a 4-year undergraduate program. Most two-year colleges are less expensive than four-year schools so it makes sense to complete general education/core courses at “JuCo” then transferring. The most savvy students decide early on which undergraduate program they wish to pursue and research which “JuCos” they have “articulation agreements” with and go there. Often that partnership between the schools has an automatic scholarship funding stream attached to it! And transferring into some academic programs is sometimes an easier, softer admissions process!
  3. Good Ol’ Elbow Grease: Take advantage of Federal Work Study opportunities during your studies! Not only does it load your resume with rich work experience before you even graduate, you get paid to work on campus! There’s no travel and most departments work around your class schedule. This is key for a student: why spend money to make money? Why stress out about your schedule?! (Think about the stress your peers will experience trying to get “enough” hours at their retail gig AND work around their class schedule AND study!) When you have to exercise strict time management, you’re likely to be more focused all around - this includes good fiscal practices! Over time, those habits save you money.
  4. Once you’re enrolled as a college student, don’t drop classes just because they’re tough! Put in some extra effort and do the very best you can. How in the world does this relate to the affordability of college? Here’s how: every time you drop a course after you’ve started attending classes, it does two things: (1) it extends the time you need to matriculate to finish your degree and (2) eats away at your financial aid! If you drop/withdraw from a class after, say, the 5th week (of a 14/15 week semester), you’ve taken 25% of the class and you’ll be charged for it. Some institutions have adopted some very strict and costly policies related to this so students should be mindful. It doesn’t seem like a big deal but in this age of “living my best life” we’ve seen an major increase in students jut not attending classes then dropping them mid-semester (after they have received any financial aid, refunds, etc.) and having a balance to meet them before they can even register for the next semester (the famous “Bursar’s Block”).

I understand the question was really about figuring out how to get institutions to adjust their cost scales (lower tuition) and, in fact, tuition rates have flattened over the last few years but, “forcing” over 1500 schools to do anything promises to be less

successful than the collective power a financially savvy consumer group wields! Colleges will

respond to THAT!

Let me know your thoughts!

*Please, pardon any typos; I submitted this response from my iPhone.*

Kortnee’s Answer


Hello, Janina!

The best way you can pay for college is through scholarships/grants.

Another way you may consider paying for college includes enlisting in the army.

Once you are eligible to leave the army, the army will pay your college tuition.

Of course if you decide to enlist in the army, you will need to file an educational leave with your university.

Please meet with a Financial Aid Counselor at your university to discuss options for paying your college tuition.

Good luck with your personal, educational, and professional endeavors!

Kortnee recommends the following next steps:

  • Meet with a Financial Aid Counselor at your university to discuss financial aid options to pay for school.
  • Visit www.scholarships.com to apply for some scholarships.

Vickey’s Answer


Below is a list of things that I think could be reviewed and have changes made to help cut the cost of a college education.

Vickey recommends the following next steps:

  • Reduce the number of "required" classes. 4 hours of gym classes? Really? If you are going to be a gym teacher or something in that field, but does the accounting major really need them?
  • Students that are admitted to the college should have all the basic english and mathematics covered in high school. Again, reduce the number of required courses.
  • Test students in the basics. If they are lacking in some areas, send them to community colleges to bring them up to speed before admitting them in to college.
  • Books!!! Why are the textbooks so ridiculously expensive? And why are professors allowed to require the purchase of books that they themselves have written?
  • Don't even get me started on activity fees, room and board, parking permits, etc.....

Bonnie’s Answer


Hi Janina

Have you investigated learning to code online? I earned a Nanodegree in six months Introduction to Programming from Udacity. They promised to teach me Python + I would learn which areas of computer science I am most interested. Low cost option to learn if you have propensity for coding.

Bonnie recommends the following next steps:

  • Visit Udacity.com
  • Chat online advisor
  • Get catalog
  • Take a few free courses
  • Open your mind to the possibility