As a Sophomore in college I now see why many kids I knew in high school chose not to go to university because going to college is an expensive commitment that takes you years to pay off. "Education is a privilege, not a right" is a phrase I hear all too often. But who decided that only some of us should be allowed to further educate ourselves after high school? What idiot thought to raise college tuition every year, making it that so many people can't go to college, and those select groups that do will be paying for it well into their adult years.
Let's jump back roughly 40 years and look at the cost of college then: a four-year private college cost roughly $2,000 a year, and a public institute was about $510 a year. If the price of college rose with the inflation of other figures such as costs of homes, cars and yearly salaries, private school tuition would be around $10,500 and public school would be $2,500. If we were to look at the average sticker prices of public and private institutes now private tuition is around $32,405, public tuition for out of state students is $23,893, and public tuition for in state students is roughly $9,410.
The question students everywhere are wanting to know the answer to is: why? Why do I have to sacrifice my soul just so I can better myself by getting an education? Why is public funding so minimal for higher education? One would think that the government and colleges want to see more people go to get a greater education, but in reality they don't care what you do with your future as long as you pay your yearly tuition bills and fund their immensely high salaries.
Many people believe the myth that the cost of college rose because public funding towards education decreased, but that is actually the opposite of what occurred. Public funding for education is at an all time high, "...the astonishing rise in college tuition correlates closely with a huge increase in public subsidies for higher education." In the course of 20 years, state funding increased by almost 400 percent, causing the cost of college to sky rocket.
I don't know about you, but that makes me wonder where all the money is actually going. And as sad as it is, there is a very simple answer: most college administrators are making high six-figure salaries. When I say administrators I do not mean teachers and faculty, I mean the school boards and presidents. According to The New York Times, "administrative positions at colleges and universities grew by 60 percent between 1993 and 2009, which Bloomberg reported was 10 times the rate of growth of tenured faculty positions." I'm sorry when I say this, but that is beyond disappointing. Why is it that the people educating students in the classroom aren't being kept, but the people on the board are? What exactly does this do for students, and the college as a whole?
When we sign those loans or checks each year we'd like to think it is going towards the educators who care about our future and push us to succeed, but in reality it is going towards the presidents of our schools. "More than 60 percent of university and college presidents get all or part of their housing provided, more than 70 percent get a car or a car allowance, and more than a third get free club memberships." Is that where you want your money going?
As expensive as college tuition is now, it makes you wonder... where is the cap? At what point will college students become an elite group that is a similar myth to a unicorn? You'd think that at some point these institutions would stop raising the cost of college, but no one quite knows where this will stop. Will the next generation have as many kids going to college? If not, what will that do to the economy? At what point will students stop being treated as profit centers?