By Staff Editorial
By Staff Editorial
Education is something that needs to be made affordable and available to all. Higher education is no different, and the amount of high school students enrolling, and students transferring into colleges and universities gives testimony to that.
But with so many flocking to college during this time of economic and budgetary instability, change is bound to happen. But whether or not this change is for better or worse is in the air.
The state wide University of California system, a 10 campus system, has been throwing around the idea of giving the campuses a bit of freedom in setting their tuition.
The proposed idea would allow the UC campuses to set their own tuition, this means the price could differ from campus to campus.
This means, for example that while UC Irvine might have a certain estimated tuition, UC Riverside could have its own tuition that is nowhere near identical.
By giving the Universities leeway to decide and set their own tuition, the balance of things will be greatly upset.
But why would this idea even be brought up?
Although it might hinder the opportunities some students have of going to some of the more prestigious universities, the revenue made could be of great importance to not only students, but to the state in its delicate budgetary condition.
California’s current budgetary downfall has left all educational institutions across the state, not only the University of California campuses, suffering.
The lack of funds has brought forth many job losses, increased tuition prices, and an increase in the amount of classes being cut with no end in sight.
So much is hurting the educational system right now, and times are calling for a way to possibly ease the pain. To have students pay roughly the same amount across the state might not be working too well for the state. While the price of tuition did go up for the UC system by 8%, this was an equal increase throughout the 10 campuses, and does not reflect how some of the Universities might change the cost of tuition. For students attending any of the UC campuses, tuition varies only slightly from campus to campus for the time being, but if the budget crisis worsens, then a possible outcome will lead to a major difference in tuition prices.
The amount of loans taken by students is already high, with the amount of debt even higher. If certain campuses were to change their tuition price, and raise it drastically if they saw fit, those attending will have very little options besides hoping to get more financial aid, take out more loans, or look for a new, cheaper university to attend.
Those seeking to transfer will feel the pain and anguish as well. Their choice of universities will dwindle according to only those they can afford.
Differences in price means that certain campuses will be immediately out of reach for any student who does not have the financial blessings that others might have. If that happens to be the case in the future, the ability to attend college will be taken away from many.
To even assume that the economy will be uplifted in any way due to a freedom in setting prices is ridiculous.
If the UC campuses change their tuition, and raise prices, the amount of students enrolling and applying to transfercould in turn go down significantly. With less students enrolling and transferring, the money that should have helped the economy will be spent on a different, cheaper college. With the budget cuts, and poor economy, having the knowledge that the 10 UC campuses are roughly the same helps keep a sort of peace of mind.
To change this, and allow the UC system to set the tuition as they please might help the state, but will hurt the students and their education, period. But if education leads to a better future, then even if the campuses are allowed to set their own tuition then a fair, affordable price needs to be maintained.
It is imperative that students become more involved, the California economy will only get worse before it gets better. If education is supposed to be of such high importance, then colleges and universities cannot afford to have budget cuts take anymore than what they already have.