Tuesday, June 27, 2006

College Tuition

Let's talk about college tuition today.

We'll have four children at OU next fall and one will be graduating in December from Florida State University -- that makes five in college at the same time - four undergraduates and one in graduate school. (And don't ask, we don't get a group rate!)

Personally, I think every student should have the opportunity to attend college. As for OHLAP, I think every 8th grade student should be signed up and then....it's theirs to lose. If they keep up the grades, stay out of trouble, and want to attend an Oklahoma college or technology center, they can do it. We should encourage our children to get the best education possible....to start and then finish their degree or certificate program....I dare say there are few college graduates in prison....seems that education is the key to success....and a productive life...BUT, it will cost us, all of us. BUT, then again, we will all benefit from an educated citizenry. What are the costs of not educating our children? of not providing them with the skills and knowledge they need to be successful?

So, it's about the COST. Which gets back to the idea of TUITION. Who decides? In Oklahoma the state regents and college presidents determine tuition. The state legislature gave that authority to them in 2003, wisely removing it as a political football. Yesterday Governor Henry vetoed a bill that would have given that authority back to the legislature. OU President Boren and OSU President Schmidly both applauded Henry's veto and noted they are both trying to keep tuition increases as low as possible.

FYI, estimated costs for an Oklahoma resident student at OU for 2005-2006 is $12,436. Check it out at http://go2.ou.edu/money_matters.htm. Want to go to OSU? Check out their tuition and fees at http://bursar.okstate.edu/tuitionEstimate.asp.

What do you think?

1 comment:

Carter said...

I think David Boren hit the nail when he called the veto courageous. It is always easy to think that the problem can be solved by putting the process back into the legislature. Tuition probably would go up more slowly, but at what cost? We have two world class universities, but it comes at a cost. Thanks for your comments. I'm glad he chose to do what makes sense.

Now, to make sure people of moderate means can actually attend these universities, I also agree with you that we should put our public money to work getting everyone there who wants to go. We should demand progress toward a degree and reasonable grades (as any parent should who might be funding someone's education). We should also make sure adults who want career and technology training get help.

Such support for education comes back to society in a better trained and better paid workforce.