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Secrets Behind the Formation of American Elites  

A quick look at the price tags of universities scares even the most motivated students

Deondra Ricketts, Author

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The rising costs of college is appalling. Whether you are an adult considering a return back to an institution of higher education, or a high school senior looking forward to achieving a degree, the cost of college comes with a shock value. For this reason, when deciding which college to attend, the cost can sometimes become the overriding priority, for even the smartest of students.

“I really want to leave the Cape, but my family and I will not be able to afford all four years of college, so I will be attending Cape Cod Community College for at least two years,” exclaimed a Nauset senior.

In a Forbes article the author Ethan Siegel states that, “As the government’s budget changed, so did Universities’ fundings.” Consequently, colleges increase tuition costs whenever needed, to offset the amount of money they no longer receive from the government.

According to Bloomberg, college tuition and fees have increased 1,120 percent since records began in 1978. It also notes that “medical expenses have climbed 601 percent, while the price of food has increased 244 percent over the same period.”

In a CNBC article, the author John Schoen says, “On the cost side, schools continue to compete for students by working to attract top faculty, build and maintain the latest facilities, and offer the next generation of students amenities that can be touted on campus tours for prospective applicants.”

Nauset seniors attest to the fact that campus facilities lure them in,“Since I am going to be doing track in college, when I visited Springfield State College their indoor track is the main part that sold me. It was the most amazing indoor track space I have ever seen,” expressed senior Mente McMillin.

The message Schoen imparts is that amenities have become an important factor in students deciding on which college to attend. Among the most competitive schools, building renovations, restaurants, and student services are added almost every year, hence the reasoning behind the constant increase of college costs.

Senior Tashica Moodie states that, “When I visited Suffolk University, it was just crazy to me how they only showed us the dorms of the newly renovated building, the one that has a gym, multiple areas for students to hang out and study, and the most picturesque view of Boston. I really hope that all of the other buildings have the same amenities.”

The perceived bias behind it all is that some researchers believe that a majority of universities are trying to attract a certain type of student who are high achievers, and are from a high income family. This simply means that they want specific types of students would be able to pay much of their own way through college.

The cost of a college degree should be of great interest to all Americans since every nation needs as many college graduates as possible to stay competitive in the global economy. Correspondingly, if the costs keep rising, college will become extremely unaffordable for middle class families, making higher education an exclusive club for America’s elites.

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Secrets Behind the Formation of American Elites