Chris Busby" />
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Saturday, September 23, 2023


College costs ignored by University

With the state of the economy in a prolonged recession, it is important for students to avoid paying more for their education.

Regardless of timing, there should be an effort to reduce the costs of college.
Two key possibilities to reducing college costs are included in the five-point plan the Student Government Association has created.

Point four on the plan calls for expansion of course offerings in the summer school two-for-one program. The plan would increase the number of core classes available to students in the program.’

The plan allows students to take two classes for the price of one. This plan would help students graduate on time without having mortgaged their own futures.
The plan includes 23 courses at half-price this summer, including seven freshman classes.

There are tentative plans on the part of new SGA President Kenneth Fomunung to expand two-for-one to include more freshman and core classes.

Point five of the plan is maintaining the Family Contract, which states that any student in a family of four with a household income of $30,000 or less will have their tuition completely paid for by a combination of government and University aid.’

Both of the outlined points are continuations and expansions of successful initiatives the University has already started.

The current SGA administration promises to continue pushing for both points as important aspects of the plan to keep students enrolled.

The two ‘for the price of one’ program is designed to keep summer school affordable and increase summer enrollment.

The program was in effect last summer, and will be in effect this summer as well. However, the classes for which it applies are limited as it only applies to specific classes, notably core classes. Last summer it only applied to 23 courses, but the current plan asks for the University to add more courses to the plan for summer 2010.

Should the University agree to expand the program, there is little doubt that it will increase the number of summer applicants.

More importantly, the increased summer enrollment will push our school into becoming a year-round University.’

With more students attending the University during the summer, students will be able to graduate on time more easily and take more courses during their time at UH.

The other aspect of the plan is maintaining the Family Contract, which is essential in keeping students from low-income families enrolled.

As a program already in place, it has proven feasible. The increase in state government funds for the University should prove to make it easier to maintain the plan, along with plans by the federal government to increase student aid.

The only shortcoming of the Family Contract is its failure to help students whose parents earn over $30,000 and contribute little or nothing to their education.

Most students can claim certain kinds of exemptions on their taxes through filing as individuals. Still, many assist their families by allowing themselves to be claimed as dependents on their parents’ taxes, despite little to no financial assistance from home.

President Obama’s new plan to start direct government lending of student loans could also free up more funds that Obama has stated would be used to increase Pell grants.

Pell grants are need-based grants typically slated for low-income undergraduates.

Should Obama’s plan pass, it would reduce the burden on the University to spend funds to accommodate students on certain types of financial aid plans.

Even so, the plan is an essential component to keeping students enrolled and to help promote the University as a whole.

Chris Busby is a political science and English junior and may be reached at [email protected].

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