Unless their summer job is selling a kidney, most students can’t earn enough to pay for college

Many parents worry about how they’re going to pay for their children’s education even when their kids plan to attend public colleges.

It doesn’t look like the struggle is going to get any easier. Reporting from today’s Georgia Board of Regents meeting, the AJC says Georgia college students would pay between $31 and $218 more per semester in tuition next fall under a proposal just approved. In addition, special fees that were due to sunset will continue.

The Regents issued a preemptive press release already today that the tuition hike represents “the smallest tuition increase in a decade – 2.5 percent.”

According to the statement from the Regents:

The action taken by the Board of Regents on tuition today is possible in part due to Gov. Nathan Deal recommending and the General Assembly agreeing to full funding of the formula for the University System of Georgia. By doing so, the regents were provided with a strong financial base upon which to set current tuition policy in fiscal year 2013.

Another key contributor to the current decision is the goal of the board to maintain affordability. “The board and I are very sensitive to the present economic realities facing our students and parents,” said University System of Georgia Chancellor Hank Huckaby. “We are thankful for the actions of the Governor and the General Assembly of fully funding the formula; it allows us to take a very conservative approach to current tuition. It also helps us maintain accessibility and affordability as we pursue increasing college completion rates across the state.”

The action by the regents on tuition was part of a larger package of decisions on the fiscal year 2013 budget and funding to the 35 colleges and universities as well as student fees and the future of the special institutional fee. The action by the board not only address affordability, but support the goals of ensuring high academic quality and promoting the Complete College Georgia completion plan.

At 2.5 percent, this is the lowest percentage increase since fiscal year 2003 for the majority of in-state undergraduate students. Depending upon the college or university in which a student is enrolled, this is an increase at 32 USG institutions from $31 to $91 per semester.

At the Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Georgia and Georgia State University, the board is adopting a new approach to bring the per-student funding closer to that of the national peers for each university. The tuition increase at Georgia Tech will be 6 percent; at UGA students will experience a 5 percent increase and the increase at Georgia State will be 3.5 percent.

“Differentiating tuition among the four research institutions is a new approach,” said USG Vice Chancellor for Fiscal Affairs John Brown. “This approach ensures each of the research institutions can fulfill their respective academic missions while being competitively priced with their peer institutions.”

Another key action taken today relates to the special institutional fee, which was first enacted in 2009 by the regents to help offset lower state support due to the economic recession. The fee is due to sunset on June 30, 2012. Today the board adopted a resolution that continues the fee at its current levels with some exceptions. The board will continue to review and evaluate the fee annually as part of the tuition and budget process, said Brown.

“Given the special institutional fee generates $210 million annually to support the USG’s core instructional mission, it would be difficult for the institutions to sustain their academic missions and quality of instruction if the fee was eliminated,” said Brown.

A total exemption from the special institutional fee was approved for active military personnel, joint enrolled students, and for exempt students who typically do not pay fees, such as senior citizens. Students who are cross-registered at multiple institutions will pay the fee only at the home institution to which they are enrolled. The final exemption approved is a 50 percent reduction in the fee for all students taking from one to four credit hours.

Other specific student fees that originate at the institutions received closer scrutiny this year, Brown said. Of the total 254 student fees in place in the System, only 18 were recommended and approved for increases. “We carefully reviewed fee increase requests and limited increases to those absolutely necessary,” said Brown.

Discussion on the blog on rising college costs always sparks comments along the lines of, “I worked my way through college. So can these kids.” Those comments disregard the incredible surge in higher education costs.

For example, I paid most of my tab to attend an Ivy League graduate school by taking off a year and working two jobs. Today, I went to the Columbia University web site today to see the current cost of my program: $55,546 for tuition and fees. Add in rent, utilities and personal expenses, and the web site estimates the total cost at $81, 422.

Unless my jobs were selling kidneys and trafficking in drugs, there is no way at age 22 that I could have earned that much money in a year working two jobs — even living in a box and dining on Saltines and tap water.

According to the AJC:

For most students — those attending 32 of the 35 colleges in the University System of Georgia — tuition would increase by 2.5 percent. That’s the smallest increase in nearly a decade. But Georgia Tech, University of Georgia and Georgia State University students would face heftier increases.

Georgia Tech would see the largest increase at 6 percent. Students would pay $3,859 per semester, a $218 jump. At UGA, a 5 percent increase would await students, hiking their tuition by $182 to $3,823 per semester. Georgia State students would pay 3.5 percent more, with semester charges growing by $127 to $3,768.

In addition to paying tuition, students pay hundreds each semester in mandatory fees. Students were supposed to get some relief because a “special institutional fee” that ranges from $160 to $544 per semester, depending on the college, was set to expire at the end of June.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

105 comments Add your comment


April 17th, 2012
12:30 pm

The great shame in all this is the fees that are being added to the cost of attendance. Georgia Tech has lobbied for several years to convert those “fees” into a tuition increase on the argument that the fees are necessary and permanent. That would allow scholarship monies to cover those costs instead of having them excluded from certain awards. Of course, the fees are purely political – a way for politicians to claim they’ve limited tuition increases and a way to deceive the public about programs (like Hope) that are being marginalized by these accounting gimmicks.

And that doesn’t illustrate another problem…the high fees make graduate programs and stipends less competitive than their competition. A typical doctoral student will pay 8-10% of their stipend in fees that are not covered by their tuition waiver. This means we lose top PhD students from our programs every year over these accounting gimmicks as well.


April 17th, 2012
12:31 pm

We have to pay those liberals huge paychecks so they can take off and go riot with their occupy buddies. Only higher education can justify their salary.


April 17th, 2012
12:35 pm

Georgia’s crooked politicians have struck again. More money for them, less opportunities for the students.


April 17th, 2012
12:37 pm

Don’t you guys employ copy editors? Is the newspaper business that broke? I should think all of you writers who are so much smarter and well informed than the average *wing nut* would know who Leon Panetta is. You might reread your own paper.

Lower taxes so I can pay off my debt along with tuition

April 17th, 2012
12:38 pm

Lower taxes so I can pay off my debt along with tuition

clark kent

April 17th, 2012
12:41 pm

Welcome to the world of government subsidies which wind up having more negative effects than the problem they were created to solve.


April 17th, 2012
12:43 pm

Thank you Maureen for putting in those comments about how much a student would have to work in order to foot their tuition bill and living expenses. My daughter will be in debt for quite some time but she went in with the plan to major in medical/dental and will hopefully be able to enter professional school in another year. So many people try to think back to the “good old days” when gas was $1.00 and you could put yourself through college by waiting tables or working in the school canteen. It’s a different day and even if your child chooses to go to school in-state, it isn’t much easier. Depending on your major, the course work is considerably harder and more rigorous. No offense, but for those who went to school back in those days, I can almost bet you wouldn’t even be accepted to the same school today.


April 17th, 2012
12:46 pm

A better question would be: exactly what costs are increasing at the various universities which require the schools to raise tuition costs?

Are you paying professors more this year than last? Are you spending more for building upkeep? Grounds maintenance? Hiring more administrators? Paying school staff more than last year?

Why can’t the answer be to cut costs at the university level? Hire a forensic accountant and go through your bills one-by-one to find out what’s unneccesary and eliminate it. Put a freeze on raises. Limit spending on cushy new office furniture and keep what you already have.

I’m positive I could find lots of things to cut spending on if I had the university’s budget available.


April 17th, 2012
12:48 pm

So when our govt subsidizes something, it’s only a matter of time until the cost of that “something” goes way up. What’s the incentive to keep it competitive if paying customers can just get someone else to cover the cost.

Best thing that ever happened to Hope was to cap it. Now students (and parents) will start having a reason to make better economic decisions. We gave our kids a set amount for college, and they could choose to go anywhere (and borrow to pay for it). Amazingly (right….) they chose instate, and kept the Hope. It’s all a matter of incentives, and who is having to pay.

Kind of reminds me of health care today, where we expect all our doc visits to be paid for by insurance (as if my oil changes are paid for by my auto insurance)


April 17th, 2012
12:48 pm


If you went to journalism school at UGA, you could pay your tuition, and fees, and dorm costs by working… Deduct HOPE (which I think you are smart enough to get) — and you would be left with approximately $8,000 per year (a far cry from $54,000 at Columbia) for a degree with a solid reputation. Pick up some work @ $10 hour, and you need 800 hours of effort to be debt free for that experience… You don’t need a car in Athens, use the bus. Don’t need a tv either — you be too busy studying… or tailgating — whichever comes first…

So, when will the AJC write an article noting that the state legislature has decreased the amount it pays for tuition from 75% of cost to under 52% and in adjusted dollars is spending less tax money per student than anytime since 1994? (When HOPE began, wait, are they swapping HOPE dollars for tax dollars?)


April 17th, 2012
12:50 pm

Follow the Course

April 17th, 2012
12:51 pm

The pure unintended consequences of the HOPE have allowed the schools to spend and build unabated knowing they have a guaranteed income. Whether the HOPE funds 2,000 kids or 1,500, the schools still “bank” the same amount of cash and receives more from the less “scholarly”.

Just like a lot of other thing government related institutions, schools can not control cost and teach subjects with little to no value. Colleges are businesses and have an infrastructure that is built way beyond possible utilization. But these structures still must be maintained.

More money, more money, more money …the more one feeds the beast, the more the beast demands to be fed.


April 17th, 2012
12:53 pm

In 1965 I could not earn all my college costs either. So I got a scholarship,which required me to maintain a B average,Found a job, AND lived at home and commuted with 2 other students to Georgia State University each day. I graduated with the only debt– teach a year in the state to pay back my student scholarship/loan. Result– NO debt other to work at the job I trained for. Living at home may not be as much fun as going away, but it does save money.


April 17th, 2012
12:54 pm

@ Follow — do the math — less than 1/3 of the students in USG institutions get HOPE — hardly enough to justify the “logic” you propose is driving tuition costs — When you examine the cost structure and see the revenue generated per student — these businesses would “bank more money” if they capped enrollment and stopped growing altogether…


April 17th, 2012
12:57 pm

Responsible parents started a college fund for their child before he was out of diapers.They didn’t expect the government to pay for everything.


April 17th, 2012
12:59 pm

This makes a great case for skipping summer employment completely and going to summer school instead! So now how much higher percentage of HOPE funds will be going to Tech, UGA and Ga State since their tuition is being raised more than the others?


April 17th, 2012
1:12 pm

@3schoolkids — HOPE is capped at a sum per student to be determined by the State Student Finance commission — therefore HOPE will not pay for any tuition increases


April 17th, 2012
1:14 pm

Ignoring “make my day”’s weird, false, and paranoid post at April 17, 1 pm….

But @ Dave at 12:46 pm: ” A better question would be: exactly what costs are increasing at the various universities which require the schools to raise tuition costs? Are you paying professors more this year than last? Are you spending more for building upkeep? Grounds maintenance? Hiring more administrators? Paying school staff more than last year?”

Another question might be why the state legislators have been reducing funding to USG schools annually for the last 4-5 years? Wasn’t it in the expectation that HOPE would cover the extra costs that are never covered by student tuition?

And I just want to point out that USG salaries for faculty, administration and staff have been frozen since 2008, along with a hiring freeze and furlough days at many schools….and I would expect that building upkeep and grounds maintenance DO cost more, given the overall rise in fuel and energy costs for the last few years. Or do you think that colleges and Universities should be charitable institutions?

Follow the Course

April 17th, 2012
1:16 pm

jd … same amonut of HOPE money and “do the math” … my numbers or yours. You only believe what you want.

How many new building have been built at these campuses within the past ten years … and what is their “utilization” rate? Basiclly are/is every claas room being filled for 9 hours a day? NO

How many more maintaienece folks cleaning crews … light bulbs … need I go on ? … wasted space and our wasted money


April 17th, 2012
1:17 pm

This is the aim of the GOP legislators, it has taken a few years and here you are. They don’t want their kids to have to compete on a level field.


April 17th, 2012
1:19 pm

And there’s just so many kidnesys you can sell!


April 17th, 2012
1:21 pm

And here I thought that the Regents’ responsibility was to ensure that the quality of the USG schools was “competitive with their peer institutions”, not the cost alone. Foolish me.

Where in that press release are the cuts to the appalling administrative bloat that the USG has wallowed in over the last ten years? How many overcompensated, underutilized vice presidents are they getting rid of to spare the students from having to fund them? What building projects have been sidelined or underenrolled classes cancelled? And how exactly do the Regents justify discriminating against the students in the research universities for the benefit of those in the technical schools?

Their smug self-congratualtion over failing again to control costs and picking and choosing who to screw over is nauseating. Lying about those fees – better than $1000/year at UGA and now rising, and just tuition that they don’t want to admit to – while protecting the monstrous wasted administrative and discretionary spending should get every one of them kicked out and forced to do something productive for a change.

Senior Citizen Kane

April 17th, 2012
1:24 pm

The AJC has answered many questions about why this is happening:

In a six-part series last year, the AJC tracked the higher costs of higher education, finding that, despite the poor economy, University System spending was rapidly rising: more money for more deans, vice presidents and other administrators, plus skyrocketing student fees and campus construction. Those trends continued during fiscal 2011, according to University System data analyzed by the AJC.

For example, the amount spent on deans and vice presidents — from the year before the recession through June 2011 — jumped by more than a third, the analysis found. The number of deans listed in the state’s Open Georgia website increased from 278 to 397 during that period, and vice presidents went from 130 to 217.


April 17th, 2012
1:25 pm

@Prof 1:14
Higher education costs have gone up faster than inflation for decades. That’s not “fuel and energy costs”. That’s schools intentionally spending more money. I saw a report recently on some of the amenities at various universities in the midwest which would roughly compare to a luxury spa experience. Totally unnecessary for an education. If they want to go to a luxury spa, let them pay for it themselves.

Universities also have a higher percentage of administrative staff to teaching staff than they have in the past. I’m certain some of the bureaucracy can be slashed without impacting the quality of what students are learning.

The GA legislasture has every right to set the amount that it funds state colleges, commensurate with the reduces tax revenue generated during this slow economic recovery. At some point, there simply isn’t going to be enough HOPE scholarship money to cover the spiraling cost of college, and subsidizing college for most GA students is in fact helping to push that cost higher each year.

Yankee Prof

April 17th, 2012
1:25 pm

For those still deluded into thinking that tuition increases go into funding our summer vacation homes, let it be noted for the record that faculty and staff working for the University System of Georgia have recieved neither cost-of-living nor merit-pay raises for four years running, and have already been informed that we will not receive any form of raise in next year’s budget.


April 17th, 2012
1:27 pm

Has anyone looked on the Georgia State employees Salary website to see how much the executive/administrative positions for the Board of Regents make a year???They are very well paid…..and must need all those fees to make their raises every year!


April 17th, 2012
1:37 pm

@VMW – no raises since 2008
@ follow up – show me the data… Classes run from 7 am until 10 pm — science courses are locked out early (only so much lab space — creating need for some students to stay an extra year — building maintenance is behind by more than $500 million (deferred for past 10 years) — can’t schedule classes on weekends as most students are working then — meanwhile costs of electricity, fuel, construction and repair materials continue to climb…

Financial analysis takes more energy than writing a misleading headline or constructing a bumper sticker

Ron Burgundy

April 17th, 2012
1:40 pm

Its all about priorities. You wanna iphone and the newest skin tight jeans then maybe college is not a prioirty.

Its funny how college educations are skyrocketing but the white house fails to villianize the liberal schools like they do with oil.


April 17th, 2012
1:42 pm

“Discussion on the blog on rising college costs always sparks comments along the lines of, “I worked my way through college. So can these kids.” Those comments disregard the incredible surge in higher education costs.”

That, Ms. Downey, is pure hogwash. The upward spiraling cost of attending college was every bit as much of an issue when I went to school in the 70’s and 80’s as it is now. Today there are FAR more opportunities for financial aid, grants, and loans available to a much broader spectrum of the public. Of course today there is a much broader EXPECTATION of attending college, rational or not. You’ve hit on a HIGHLY sensitive nerve here.

I figured out how to get an undergraduate and graduate degree from a very expensive private institution (expensive then and now), ON MY OWN. I did NOT feel entitled to attend this institution, I felt like I had to earn my way in and through. Part of that equation was trading four-plus years of my life for GI Bill benefits, another part was selling my civilian services cheaply to employers who provided tuition reimbursement.

State institutions are a special case due to the taxpayer subsidy and public politics. Feel free to apply pressure, that’s what the political process is for.

Tony Smith

April 17th, 2012
1:42 pm

The problem started earlier when the University System instituted tuition increases in a time of almost no inflation. Because HOPE funding was plentiful, no one in the Governor’s office or the Legislature questioned it but should have. It is time that the Board of Regents answers to someone.


April 17th, 2012
1:45 pm

I would like to read an article about how the State has lowered the funds going to the Public Schools and how that is causing an increase in tuition, but I guess that is too hard for the ajc to do actual research and see how much it cost to teach a student and compare that to state fubds vs other.

Follow the Course

April 17th, 2012
1:46 pm

jd … your maintenance numbers and your argument “make my point” … the schools have built things they can’t handle … and “classes run from 7 to 10″ … how many students in each class … how many different TA’s … not even Professors teaching the class …


April 17th, 2012
1:47 pm

HOPE, which is funded by the lottery, not taxpayers, is supposed to be dedicated to education, and the lottery proceeds have been raided and diverted by legislators rather consistently (a promise that worked out similarly to the promise of the GA 400 toll booth proceeds). The cost of doing business has risen for everybody, whether for profit or not for profit, and the ridiculous mandates in NCLB and other legislation that aim to get ALL kids into college, accompanied by cuts to vocational and technical education, has certainly driven up the costs of operating a college or university. More students? Well guess what? That means more professors, more classrooms, more classroom equipment, more new academic programs programs, more dorms, more technology, etc. As any organization expands, its capital needs increase. Every kid who WANTS to go to college should certainly have that opportunity, but public schools and all their ridiculous testing demands (which line the pockets of legislators through testing company PACs and lobbies, as do the textbook companies), as well as laws like NCLB, insist on sending kids AND parents the message that if you don’t go to college, you’re a loser. Not true, and not every kid is cut out for college. This problem is complex and is built on a foundation that begins long before colleges get their funding. The challenges of college funding are in large part a consequence of the silly demands being put on public education in grades K-12.

Maureen Downey

April 17th, 2012
1:50 pm

@DAWg, Not so in terms of rates of increase in college costs.

In the past 20 years, “tuition increased twice as fast as the overall cost of living (Larson).”
Between 1980 and 1990, the average cost of attending public and private colleges increased by 109% and 146%, respectively (Hood). To put these figures into perspective, we can compare them with other rising costs during the same 10-year period. For example: medical care costs rose 117%, new home costs went up 90%, and the cost of a new car went up a mere 37%; meanwhile, median family income only grew by 73% (Hood).

And from CNNMoney:

Tuition and fees at public universities, according to the College Board, have surged almost 130% over the last 20 years — while middle class incomes have stagnated.

Tuition: In 1988, the average tuition and fees for a four-year public university rang in at about $2,800, adjusted for inflation. By 2008, that number had climbed about 130% to roughly $6,500 a year — and that doesn’t include books or room and board.

Income: If incomes had kept up with surging college costs, the typical American would be earning $77,000 a year. But in reality, it’s nowhere near that.

In 2008 — the latest data available — the median income was $33,000. That means if you adjust for inflation, Americans in the middle actually earned $400 less than they did in 1988. (Read: How the middle class became the underclass).

Financial aid: Meanwhile, the amount of federal aid available to individual students has also failed to keep up. Since 1992, the maximum available through government-subsidized student loans has remained at $23,000 for a four-year degree.

“There does seem to be this growing disparity between income and the cost of higher education,” said Justin Draeger, president of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. “At the same time, there’s been a fundamental shift, moving away from public subsidization, to individuals bearing more of the cost of higher education.”

Facing that disparity, it’s no wonder then that two other trends have emerged: Families are taking on unprecedented levels of debt or downgrading their child’s education from a four-year, to a two-year, degree to cut costs. Student debt is often viewed as a good kind of debt, because a college education seems to promise a better future.


April 17th, 2012
1:58 pm

Did anything explain why the research universities did not have equal increases? I understand an increase is expected every year, but it has been across the board the same. Why change that now? That being said, Georgia Tech is the 4th ranked Engineering school in the country. The top 3 being MIT, Stanford, and UC-Berkeley (CalTech #5). It is still a significant bargain compared to the rest of this list, with UC-Berkeley the only comparable state school at ~12,000 a year in-state.


April 17th, 2012
1:59 pm

Colleges are so yesterday.

Despite options to “test out” of a very limited number of intro courses, we continue to force college students to spend YEARS of inefficient “seat time” in colleges classrooms.

By comparison, students can earn Microsoft certification in a variety of areas—by studying at home at their own pace and taking rigorous tests to prove competence.

So why not allow testing in more college courses? Well, tradition stands in the way. And as always, so do the teachers’ unions. What would Steve Jobs recommend? (See his biography page 544 to get his general drift…)

Parent Teacher

April 17th, 2012
2:06 pm

When I Graduated from Georgia College and State University in 2000, tuition was less than $1100 per semester not including room an board. Now tuition is over $3200 per semester. That is almost 3 times what it cost only 12 years ago. That is insane. The State continues to cut all state agencies, education, local funding, etc… And they continue to create mandates that require more funding from local municipalities. Thanks Chip, ALEC and others.

Old timer

April 17th, 2012
2:12 pm

Maybe colleges ought to cut administrati e…non teaching positions Boutntwenty percent…


April 17th, 2012
2:14 pm

To the earlier comment about what costs are increasing to necessitate the increase, it’s mainly that the state keeps slashing higher education funding. As that goes down, tuition and fees have to be raised to keep the university running even if no cost increases occur.

These cuts have happened for several years, and state universities have largely made all the cuts and changes they can without hurting the quality of education provided, and research conducted. Faculty have had furlough days (salary reductions), staff has been scaled back and class sizes have been increased.

Employees are not getting paid more, as there has a been a pay freeze for four years now. So no one has gotten any merit raises. Any faculty pay increases were a result of someone having a better offer from another university, and their university counter offering. That’s currently the only way for faculty to get a raise–go get another offer and see if your university will match. That’s terrible for improving quality of a university as good faculty are now more likely to get an offer they can’t refuse and go elsewhere, when they may not have applied for other jobs if regular merit raises were in place.

It’s an unfortunate situation, but not much can be done when it’s impossible politically to raise taxes. Thus public funding gets slashed, and our universities have turned from public universities, to publicly assisted universities that now get more than 50% of their funding from tuition, fees, private donations and indirects taken from faculty-obtained research grants,

Michael Moore

April 17th, 2012
2:26 pm

Today’s Chronicle of Higher Education had an article where Vice President Joe Biden was asked what was causing such a rise in college tuition. His response was faculty salaries. I would like to make it clear that faculty in the University System of Georgia have not had a raise in pay in four years and had a reduction in pay due to furloughs for one year. Additionally, benefits have risen as well as institutional costs like parking. I would also like to make it clear that I am talking only about faculty and most staff. However, the same cannot be said for administrators.

C Jae of EAV

April 17th, 2012
2:28 pm

I got a silly idea, Instead of the constant tuition hiking, how about we take all the HOPE money and give to the University System and generally lower the cost of in-state tuition across the board so that students may actually be able to afford it.

I’m just saying. Commurate with this expect that the cost of private school on the secondary level will hike up as well. They seem to be closely indexed.


April 17th, 2012
2:32 pm

Maureen, while the costs of Ivy schools and other nationwide trends are interesting, they don’t relate to Georgia. It remains very affordable to attend college in this state. While the research Universities are more expensive than the other schools in the state, even they are below national averages. With HOPE (even in diminished form), Pell, and other scholarships available, it remains extremely possible to work one’s way through college at a Public Georgia institution without selling a kidney. If you want to do some numbers that relate to the story, starting trying to figure out what a semester a Kennesaw would cost, or Georgia Gwinnett. That’s the story that affects most of Georgia.

Misty Fyed

April 17th, 2012
2:37 pm

Yet this morning’s headline was about major state schools bragging about the number of kids who can’t afford school who are now able to get their degree debt free. So now the colleges are increasing my kids tuition to take my and my kid’s money and use it to pay for somebody else’s kids tuition.

That’s fair..


April 17th, 2012
2:38 pm

How much did the students of GSU vote to increase their student fees by so they could have a completely optional and educationally unimportant football team? Seems to be a lot of costs that could be cut at universities and it’s not all in administration. Get rid of the rock climbing walls, the plush housing, and the thousand other luxuries that earlier generations didn’t have and then we can talk about the rising costs.


April 17th, 2012
2:38 pm

“Depending on your major, the course work is considerably harder and more rigorous. No offense, but for those who went to school back in those days, I can almost bet you wouldn’t even be accepted to the same school today.”

Bull! Engineering was hard then. Pelase expalin how is has gotten more difficult. If anything, most students have more time thanks to portable devices – laptops, phones, etc. and do not have to spend hours at the library researching the material like I did.


April 17th, 2012
2:43 pm

@ Maureen,

First — you can’t lump private and public together and have a reasoned discussion about tuition. Since your article is based upon USG tuition — let’s keep the topic there.

Second, the costs of public higher ed is the sum of state subsidies and student paid (charged) tuition,. A+B=C. In 1995, Ga had a formula — taxpayers paid 75% of C, students 25% of C. Now, state tax funds pay for approximately 50% of C, which accounts for a 100% increase in B to cover the gap — and C never changes.

Third, the value of an education at GT is without a doubt best in the world. When you compare tuition and taxpayer funded costs among other states — Georgia’s system outperforms them by a large margin… so, why does the AJC continue to denigrate efforts to maintain quality at a bargain?

@Follow — those buildings were built to accommodate demand — student population has doubled in less then 15 years — and the legislature agreed to fund maintenance costs at the rate business fund maintenance costs — and then due to budgetary pressures, pulled back. (We are also behind other infrastructure maintenance to the tune of billions). So, no, your point is not proven — the partners who agreed to finance maintenance had to back away from their commitments… the same is true for K12….

Ron F.

April 17th, 2012
2:44 pm

“Yet this morning’s headline was about major state schools bragging about the number of kids who can’t afford school who are now able to get their degree debt free.”

Really? How is that done? I tried like crazy to find someone to pay for my master’s and nobody told me I could get it debt free. This is exaggeration. Besides, if they qualify for anything “free”, it’s because they have Pell Grant money coming in from the feds, so the state pays none of that.


April 17th, 2012
2:44 pm

I agree with C Jae of EAV Instead of the constant tuition hiking, how about we take all the HOPE money and give to the University System and generally lower the cost of in-state tuition across the board so that students may actually be able to afford it. Also lets be sure to not let illegal aliens pay nothing or less than in-state citizens. Professors at Colleges should teach a minimum of X hours for their Salaries. All other State employees, Teachers, etc. have to work a minimum number of days each year for their salaries.


April 17th, 2012
2:45 pm

@ EduKtr, April 17, 1:59 pm. You’re at it again. You claim over and over on other blogs that Georgia’s K-12 teachers belong to a teacher’s union when that’s illegal according to our Constitution; and now you state that professors do too. Ridiculous. Never have anywhere in this country, and, I predict, never will. And not because it’s against the law…because we don’t need unions. We’re very different from K-12 educators, and so is our profession. And if you don’t know the difference, I’m not going to spend the time spelling it out for you.

@ Michael Moore, April 17, 2:26 pm. Depending upon the USG school, some administrators have had furloughs and pay freezes along with their faculty and staff. At my own, they have.

And for those complaining that there should be cuts in the numbers of highly paid college administrators, I believe that has already begun with the consolidation of 8 USG schools into 4….and I don’t think that’s the end of the consolidations.

Follow the Course

April 17th, 2012
2:49 pm

jd … basics … if you can not afford it don’t buy it … even if their is a demand and it is OK if kids want to become “technical experts” learn a craft … The colleges have “marketed” themselves as an “end-all” while they have dismembered the technical schools … we are not needing what the “big” schools have made.