When I finished my undergraduate degree, I had over $20k in student debt. I was a second-generation student and had the opportunity to lean on the support of my parents and community. I also was fortunate to receive financial aid in the form of scholarships and…student loans. Still, there were a lot of costs that I didn’t factor in when thinking about the cost of college: textbooks/class materials, eating pizza on Friday nights with friends, The Office DVDs (yes, college was a long time ago), and meal plans. While some of these items are more necessary than others, it’s important to consider what costs you should anticipate.
According to College Board, there are roughly five categories you need to be thinking about as you’re planning the costs of college:
According to research by U.S. News, costs of college are also growing. The average tuition and fees at private universities has jumped 157 percent over the past 20 years while out-of-state rates have grown 194 percent. You can see in the chart above how the cost of private and public colleges have grown significantly, even when all numbers are adjusted for 2017 dollars.
“If you look at the long-term trend, [college tuition] has been rising almost six percent above the rate of inflation,” said Ray Franke, a professor of education at the University of Massachusetts, Boston to CNBC. On the cost side, paying top-tier faculty (and coaches), infrastructure investments, and amenities for students have added up. On the revenue side, according to analysis from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, “state spending on public colleges and universities remains well below historical levels.” The research highlights that from 2008-2017, states spent an average of $1,448 less per student with funding currently remaining “far below” pre-recession levels.
Here are average estimated yearly costs per student on-campus at either a public or private nonprofit schools:
The bottom line(s):
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By Soren Nieminen, Social Chair of Image Impact International.