College Needs to be about Education for All, Not Profit

Ani Diefenderfer

A prevalent issue facing our nation today is student debt. In fall of 2019, 19.9 million students were enrolled in US colleges. Most graduates from high school continue on to college, and thousands of them can’t afford many schools that have tuition–which can reach up to $75,000 a year.

We are fortunate enough to have programs providing students with financial aid, yet still after that, many kids have to take out loans. After graduating from college on top of the stress that comes with hoping to secure a job, some graduates are starting their lives already thousands of dollars in debt. Some students may even go on to getting more degrees, such as their Masters, or even Doctorate, which only add on to the staggering loans these students have from college.

This is an issue that calls for not only reform, but compromise.

Obviously, going to college for free hypothetically sounds great, but in reality is much more complicated as taxes would sky rocket. I believe that the college board is a flawed system, that cares less about students receiving a proper education, and more about how much money they can make from tuition fees.

The Laurie Laughlin scandal is a perfect example of this. How is it fair that Olivia Jade was admitted to the University of Southern California solely because her SAT scores were fixed. Her mother was only able to do this because of their extreme wealth. Meanwhile, lots of students in America can’t afford tutoring, and we all know standardized tests aren’t an accurate representation of intelligence.

Furthermore, when looking at Tulane admissions this year, almost all early decision applicants were accepted and most early action applicants were declined, even if they were extremely qualified for the school. The reasoning behind this? Money.

Early decision students are committed to Tulane, ensuring Tulane that if they accept these applicants, they will receive their money. Meanwhile, early action students don’t necessarily have to choose Tulane, thus the school gave most of its spots to early decision applicants for money purposes.

This flawed system needs immense reform, as even with financial aid and scholarships, students are still drowning in debt because the focus has reverted to less on education and more on profit.

Ultimately, I believe research needs to be done regarding the tuition required for each school and where this money is going, as this is an issue that needs to be discussed more frequently.