Cost of Earning a College Degree Prohibitively Expensive for Many

Is Congress serious about making college more affordable and increasing access to college for more students?

Historically, their efforts to do so have failed, which is why “approximately 60 percent of students who earned a bachelor’s degree during the 2011-12 academic year left school more than $26,000 in debt.”

Fortunately, the Heritage Foundation’s Lindsey M. Burke has real solutions to this problem, which she discussed in a testimony before the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection.  Watch the testimony below.

Burke said, “earning a college degree is the way to climb the ladder of economic mobility,” which is why she has dedicated serious research to ensuring those who go to college can afford to do so without being burdened by such great debt upon graduation.   She stated:

The value of earning a college degree is demonstrable. The cost of earning that degree, however, has become prohibitively expensive for many as college costs have risen. Average tuition at four-year public institutions for out-of-state students reached $22,200 this academic year, and at private universities, average tuition now exceeds $30,000 annually.

In order to change that phenomenon, Burke explains:

In order to make college more affordable, federal policy should do three things:

1. Stop the higher education spending spree;
2. Employ fair-value accounting to understand the cost of federal student loans; and
3. Decouple federal financing from accreditation

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