Colleges and universities have long been concerned with the issues of controlling cost and providing the neediest students with access to a good education, and we welcome President Obama's interest in providing solutions.
Although professors sport a negligible ability to directly lower a tuition bill, I would argue that there are other things that faculty can do to address the cost of higher education, practices that can directly affect the experiences and outcomes of our struggling students.
It's no longer as simple as stashing a little cash away to make it. Financing a college education requires dedication, determination, and strong willpower to trade the daily $4 lattes for a home-brewed cup of Joe.
We need to guide our colleges back to reality by making them responsible for the loans they benefit from. They will have to rethink their tuition strategies once they are responsible for collecting the loans.
Dean Dan Rodriguez has written a letter to his students at Northwestern University Law School to announce a class size reduction, a tuition increase, and a commitment to increase scholarships and to cover LRAP costs.
As tuition of private educational institutions have outpaced inflation and the cost of living, one of the most encouraging developments is the emphasis placed on controlling the costs of education, often in novel ways overlooked in the past.
There is no better way to alienate a massive swath of American citizenry than to cut funding for loans and grants to students seeking to enroll in higher education and in need of economic support to do so.
With college debt soaring over a trillion dollars, parents and students are up in arms. It's no wonder why California students have started demonstrating and the Occupy Wall Street movement has taken up the banner too.
As our country faces the economic, social, cultural, and global challenges of the 21st century, the way to keep the American dream within our grasp is to provide more, not less, access to higher education.