Several States Have A Plan That Could Radically Change Higher Education
Career College Central summary:
College education around the country is becoming less affordable than ever, putting it more out of reach for those who need it most. But several states are moving forward with a plan to change that. Oregon and Tennessee have unveiled plans to offer "free" community college for all in a move that, if adopted, could fundamentally realign education in the United States and spur a major economic boom. Everyone, take notice.
The cost of a college education is a running away from us. Between 2000 and 2012, the average four-year college tuition increased 44%. Even public universities, which were established with the intention to provide affordable education for everyone, are becoming inaccessible, as the average public college tuition has increased 71% since 2000. In fact, the majority of Americans (62%) say that public universities are unaffordable.
There's a debate now about whether four-year degrees are even "worth it." But given the clear advantages of higher education in general, accessible community college or technical training post-high school could fill a major void in our education system.
Lawmakers around the country are already moving forward with the idea. Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Haslam proposed the "Tennessee Promise," a program that would fully cover the cost at two-year in-state colleges for any high school graduate. The plan is part of his campaign to raise the state's graduation rates from 32% today to 55% by 2025, in hopes of increasing job eligibility and overall employment. The Tennessee House approved it on April 15 and sent the bill to Haslam for signing. Oregon and Mississippi are also considering similar programs.
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