March 20th, 2017
Although some people do not see the rising costs of colleges across the country as a critical problem, it would make more economic and educational sense to make college more affordable to combat the increasing student debt and dropout rates due to issues regarding economic disadvantages.
Is College Worth The Price?
Everyone wants to be a doctor or a lawyer when they grow up, but the fact is that if you aren't a rocket scientist or a superstar athlete, college will most likely take a chunk out of your family's wallet. College costs are increasing and more students are forced to take out student loans and wind up in massive amounts of debt when they leave college. College degrees give you a better chance to make more money, but they by no means guarantee financial success. This isn't to persuade anyone to not go to college, but this is just to make everyone aware of what they could be faced with. Not only are people coming out of college with debt, some students drop out without a degree because of the price. Students should be able to graduate college with a degree without massive amounts of debt and the first step should be lowering the costs of colleges.
What is the significance of a degree?
When someone graduates college with a degree, it does not mean they are guaranteed to make more money, but it does help. According to U.S. Census figures, the average college graduate earns $26,922 more per year than the average high school graduate, but the average college dropout earns only $3,092 more. Some students graduate college crippled by loan debt and struggle to find good paying jobs so they have to find an entry-level job that they could've got without a degree, which is the unfortunate truth. As previously stated, a college degree does not guarantee financial success, but it does make it more likely.
What has been done to help students already?
There are thousands of scholarships available to students who wish to pursue a college degree, some more beneficial than others, but for students who are unfortunately disadvantaged economically and educationally, scholarship money can be hard to come by. This leaves the students who are not as advantaged economically and educationally to be forced to take out student loans. This is a huge problem across the country as every student should have the opportunity to go to college without being crippled by debt. There are steps being taken towards making college more affordable through scholarship and aid, but more needs to be done regarding the cost of college.
Should College be Free? (Rebuttal)
There are already promise programs like the Tennessee Promise available to students to allow students to go to a community college for free to avoid the growing prices of college. College should not be free to everyone, it should just be cheaper for everyone. This would decrease the amount of debt as more students could afford school. If college was free it could lead to laziness as it would cost just as much to go to college as it would to drop out of college. The University of California at Davis found that free community college may have led to a higher enrollment, but it didn't show an increase in graduation. The problem is getting students to graduate and making college affordable is the first step, however making college free has not shown any substantial evidence of higher graduation rates.
The Future of College Costs
As the cost to go to college continues to rise, there is little someone can do to change it. Overtime as more students are forced to take out student loans and dragged down by debt, hopefully a step in the right direction will be made. The step towards college affordability is necessary in today's world as jobs are becoming harder to come by and degrees are becoming that much more important. The cost of college must be lowered in order to give every student a chance to succeed in life financially.