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College Financial Aid Isn't Going to the Neediest

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Replies to: College Financial Aid Isn't Going to the Neediest

  • mensa160mensa160 Posts: 11
    edited May 2013
    Poor people, white, black, or other, get to go to the Ivies for free, everyone else pays. How is that fair?
  • sylvan8798sylvan8798 Posts: 31
    edited May 2013
    ^Well, that only took 6 pages...
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Posts: 296
    edited May 2013
    And no, like many people going through the college process for the very first time, she applied only where she REALLY wanted to go -- no state colleges (party schools), no UC's (too big & impersonal), no financial safeties (knew she would qualify for lots of FA), just small prestigious liberal arts colleges, & I think Harvard, Yale & Stanford. But she was not the only one!

    I.e. an all-reach application list. A shut-out waiting to happen. And it did.

    The one acceptance to a too-expensive college requiring too much debt may be worse than a complete shut-out, since it appears to have tempted the student to take on the excessive debt instead of moving on and attending community college and transferring to a state university (if the student lives in California, this should be a financially doable option).
  • matthewjohnsonmatthewjohnson Posts: 7 Harvard Champion
    edited May 2013
    What a shame! To think that in the 21st century there is still not equal opportunity for all to succeed. Such a contrast between Horatio Alger and his call to the American Dream
  • lopezamlopezam Posts: 1 Harvard Champion
    edited May 2013
    How many of us remember in the early 90s articles stating that the cost of higher education would exponentially increase. Voila! We here and this is what it's come down too. My personal observation is that as cost escalated so does the opportunity to obtain funding also had to escalate.
    I went to school in the late 80s. I remember it just being called financial aid period. That's it. And scholarships were just that "scholarships".
    It was pretty simple back in the day, if you didn't qualify for financial aid, aka need based aid - the the school would provide additional aid at their discretion. Pretty basic.

    In those days, honestly student loans were common and higher education was more affordable as well. My private school education was 40K for four years.

    Well, so now the costs are outrageous, justified or not it's still outrageous, even for state public schools. So, what does a school do.

    Now schools have to attract students.

    The've got to lure students in - using their discretionary funding/merit scholarships. Schools advertise their merit scholarships...

    Higher education is a business. I am not trying to discredit higher education, I am just saying it's also a business. Merit scholarships are to students as bait is to a fish.
  • lvvcsflvvcsf Posts: 8 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    matthewjohnson:"What a shame! To think that in the 21st century there is still not equal opportunity for all to succeed. Such a contrast between Horatio Alger and his call to the American Dream"

    The Horatio Alger story was one of what an individual could do in America with work and determination. It was never a story of equal opportunities. Up until the early 1900's most societies were based on some kind of a class system. Regardless of one's determination, often because of a real or perceived class distinction, they would not be allowed to be successful. There will always be income disparities, however, that does not mean a poor person will be unable to work hard and pursue their dreams. They may not get there the same way a more financially well off person would. But they are allowed and encouraged to do so.
  • rmldadrmldad Posts: 16
    edited May 2013
    @lopezam - You stated, "My personal observation is that as cost escalated so does the opportunity to obtain funding also had to escalate." I would aruge that you have causality reversed.

    Government makes more tax credits and dedutions available and colleges simply increase their costs to soak up these new funds. Student loans become easier to obtain and college increase their costs to take advantage.

    Families, in aggregate, have a level of pain and sacrifice that they are willing to make to fund their children's education. That level does not decrease as more money becomes availabe, it simply gets absorbed by the higher education industrial complex.
  • LakeCloudsLakeClouds Posts: 49
    edited May 2013
    Government makes more tax credits and dedutions available and colleges simply increase their costs to soak up these new funds

    This is true whenever the Government gets involved. In housing, the Government supported cheap no-money down loans so people could afford higher prices and guess what? They paid higher prices and we had a bubble. Now the same things happening with the Fed zero-interest policy. Healthcare - same thing.

    The interesting question is how the Higher Ed bubble will end. Already the Government has agreed to absorb massive loses on student debt. That will stave off the crash but for how much longer? Schools are getting squeezed and are giving more merit aid in hopes of retaining their rankinhs and avoiding a downward spiral leading to closure.
  • 4kidsdad4kidsdad Posts: 14
    edited May 2013
    Already the Government has agreed to absorb massive loses on student debt.
    How?? At present, my kids still can't simply walk away from their student debt.
  • sybbie719sybbie719 Super Moderator Posts: 47
    edited May 2013
    moderators note

    Please do not turn this thread into a political or AA debate. Doing so will shut this thread down and issue warnings to those who do not abide by CC TOS.
  • LakeCloudsLakeClouds Posts: 49
    edited May 2013
    How?? At present, my kids still can't simply walk away from their student debt


    See this link. It's a cap as a percent of income and then after a certain number of years the debt is erased.

    Income-Based Plan | Federal Student Aid
  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse Posts: 252
    edited May 2013
    When there is so much money to spend, and you need so many students to keep the college wheels running, yes, where you direct the dollars is going to mean that some other cause is not going to get them I know a number of schools that felt they HAD to start giving merit aid in order to stay competitive much as they hated to do so. Oberlin, for one. The fact of the matter is that those students who can pay most of the bill and have the stats so that they have a number of choices for college, may cross a school off the list without an discount.
  • yanniboy24yanniboy24 Posts: 4 Harvard Champion
    edited May 2013
    Merit scholarships are necessary though
  • LakeCloudsLakeClouds Posts: 49
    edited May 2013
    I know a number of schools that felt they HAD to start giving merit aid in order to stay competitive much as they hated to do so.

    I don't get this viewpoint that needs-based aid is good while merit aid is something "hated" but must be done. Don't students who have top scores and GPAs deserve as much aid as anyone else? That's like have a "needs-based" salary at work. "Oh, I see you have a lot in the bank so I'll pay you half what I pay Mr. spenf-thrift."
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