I wonder what my American readers think of this Times Argus article:
It is not a question of “if,” but rather “when,” the middle class will be priced out of access to higher education. The trends are clear: current costs are staggering, causing families and students to take on debt that will burden their financial decisions for years to come.
If tuition costs continue to increase at its current pace, the middle class will be shut out of college within a generation. Access to higher education will then revert to pre-World War II status: an institution exclusively for the wealthy.
In 1994, students whose families earned more than $100,000 per year represented 15 percent of the campus population. Ten years later, this percentage has risen to almost 33 percent of all students. What does this show? That the presence of students from middle- to lower-income backgrounds are a diminishing on our college campuses.
In comparison, in Quebec, you can attend any program in any university (including anglo universities like McGill) for less than CAN$3000 a year. That’s right, including medical school, MBA programs, the works! CAN$3000 is about US$2000 discounting the Bush effect on American currency. It is interesting to note that this article is from Vermont… Vermont is basically our neighbour.
Of course, Quebec salaries, including professors’ salaries, are much lower.
I’ve got to wonder what the long terms effect of this improper wealth distribution will have on the USA. The truth is that a country needs to draw on the smarts of its entire population to go forward and be competitive. Whether we like it or not, there are many very brigth kids in the 80% poorest kids. I’m sure Bill Gates has smart kids, but mines could, maybe, compete and win! If given a chance!