I’ve seen several pieces in educational media recently that suggest that a backlash may be brewing among middle class families in reaction to the exorbitant cost of many selective colleges. This nascent movement isn’t necessarily forming in reaction to the Ivy League tier of schools, which will always attract applicants no matter their cost, but more in response to the next tier of private institutions across the U.S.
A small subset of the schools now costing upwards of $50K for the total yearly cost of attendance include Bates, Carleton, Colorado College, Hamilton, Johns Hopkins, Pomona, Stanford, Swarthmore, Vassar, Washington University (SL), Williams, and many, many more….
There are many wonderful colleges across the U.S. that offer an excellent education at reasonable prices, as well as those that are consistently generous with aid and discounting offers. Independent educational consultants can help families identify schools and enrollment arrangements that can significantly reduce the cost of attendance, and equally important, student debt after graduation. As a consultant from a working class background who was a first generation college student I am especially sensitive to such concerns, and I strive to keep my own fees at a reasonable levels, with special group discounts, pro bono clients, and offers to assist local high schools with college planning for free. My own summer college planning clinic is just such an effort, with dramatically reduced rates for students participating in an eight week, 16-hour college coaching class: http://pinnaclecollegeplanning.com/ (click on the “summer clinic” page).
Click here to see a pretty cool viral video out of Canada (apparently similar problems abound there) that gets to the heart of the student debt lament: the Student Poverty Song. It’s pretty catchy and has great visuals: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cr2LiQGrC7A