New Report Details Rising Cost to Attend College

Breaking news: college is expensive. A new report by the Institute for Research on Higher Education at the University of Pennsylvania details just how high the cost of college truly is for students.

But a few revelations within the report may shatter some of the thoughts we had about the cost of college. For example, community colleges, or two-year institutions of higher learning, are not that cheap for many students.

In Mississippi, families that make $30,000 or less will pay nearly 50 percent of their yearly income to attend a community college. Mississippi is one of the poorest states in the nation because it has one of the highest poverty rates in the country.

The most expensive state to attend college is New Hampshire where the poor have to shell out close to 160 percent of their income for admission into a non-profit, private college.

Alabama isn’t much better. For admittance into the University of Alabama, poor families have to pay 90 percent of its income to attend. Alabama, like Mississippi, is one of the worst states in terms of the number of residents who live in poverty.

The average loan amount to attend a public two-year college in Massachusetts is over $4,000, and for a private four-year non-doctoral school, the average in Wyoming is close to $10,000.

The news gets worse as the report reveals that financial aid hasn’t kept up with the rising cost of college, so it’s no longer a powerful purchasing tool to attend college. Just as wage stagnation has dogged many workers across the country, the same may be said for financial aid.

This is all compounded as many states, especially in the south, have moved to cut money from higher education, which has contributed the boom in college costs.

But the report notes that because many lawmakers have vowed to help bring down the cost of college that all is not lost. Only problem is it may be too late as many families have already been priced out of sending their kids to college.

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