In times of financial crisis, every penny is extremely important. New York City provided it during the Great Depression, America offered it to veterans after World War II, and we need it today: free college. This means no tuition whatsoever for all qualified students. An existing model persuasively says the plan can work. But first, here is why free college is a must.
The American nation and the entire world is facing a crisis, with vast domestic and worldwide implications, that can only be addressed by thinking out of the box education. U.S. was once the leader in the percentage of college graduates between the ages of 25-34 and has dropped to number 12 out of the 36 developed nations.
The high costs of higher education is pushing students out of the halls of learning. Add that to the crippling student loans that will burden students and their families for decades. Student debt is now greater than total credit card debt for the entire nation. Outstanding student loans total more than a staggering $ 979 billion and that figure is growing at the rate of $2.854 a second, with the average debt now exceeding $25.000.
The government is aware of this problem, but doesn’t have a strong solution. While free college might be a great idea, it is a lot harder to implement it, because there is a huge amount of money involved. As a radical solution, President Obama threatened to withdraw federal funding to colleges that jack up tuition. He also proposed lowering interest rates and repayment schedules on student loans.
With all these problems at hand, there are however some colleges that provide students with great academic records a free spot on the campus. Many of these universities are funded by endowments, state programs, or even student workers. They all offer an incredibly affordable way to get high quality education.
Here are five of the best free colleges in the United States.
- Alice Llyod College. Located in Pippa Passes, Kentucky, this college offers free tuition to students who demonstrate achievement on the SAT/ACT as well as GPA in pre-college curriculum.
- The Cooper Union offers academic programs in architecture, art and engineering. Undergraduates are admitted solely based on merit and all receive full scholarships.
- The University of Arizona. Provided that you have exceeded testing standards, students can receive a tuition waiver to attend this University.
- Oregon Institute of Technology. National Merit Scholarship Finalists and those with otherwise excellent qualifications can receive full resident tuition from the Institute.
- Lorain County Community College is the place where students can earn merit based free tuition or receive the Diversity Incentive Award, which gives this Community College high school graduates of specific ethnic groups free tuition.
Of course, there are more free colleges that provide excellent study conditions for students who cannot afford to go to the more prestigious institutions, such as Yale, Harvard or Brown. Despite the major financial problems U.S. is facing, it is high time these changes in education took place.