T Nation

College Tuition up 40%


#1

If price controls and 'excessive profits taxes' are a good idea for gasoline, should the same sort of logic apply to a college education?

http://www.anncoulter.com/cgi-local/welcome.cgi

The best part is where it gets pointed out how tuition goes up precisely as much as any tuition tax credits.

Happy being milch-cows, guys?


#2

How in the world can Coulter shine the light of morality and goodness on a former Exxon CEO, and denounce the educational system as a whole based on this one Churchill guy?

Her whole argument is based on two things, the first, that gas is essential to life, and second, that education isn't. She doesn't even defend the first argument, she merely states that it provides many goods, blah blah blah. As if gas was the breath of life. It ISN'T, it's a chemical dependency, it's a drug, and like all drugs, it's killing the US system as a whole, and killing individuals based on our need for it.

Her second argument, that education isn't all that important, is essentially a product of her stating that teachers are overpaid morons. And THAT argument is a product of her idiotic way of lumping all teacher in with Churchill. So that one is shot to hell as well.


#3

I think that it would be great if we could subsidize certain college majors more, the ones in high demand: science , engineering, medicine/nursing , computer science, and education. If i was in charge these majors would pay $1000 a year at any public school and still have the same GPA kind of requirements as needed. I would rather encourage our own home grown engineers and scientists than just have them come over from wherever.


#4

Oh boy...

Tuition costs have NOTHING to do with our salaries. Colleges do NOT increase professor's salaries when tuition increases, nor we have any say when defining tuition -- much like the attendant at the gas pump has no saying on gas prices.

If you want to compare greedy CEOs to DEANS, PROVOSTS and PRESIDENTS of colleges, fine. But not to us poor college professors (you'd be amazed how low my salary is -- I make most of my income through book and research rights and consulting work).

Tuition costs have been going up because the costs for colleges have been going up, but not because of professors; everything from maintenance costs, land costs, research costs, renovation costs, equipment costs, IT infrastructure costs, sports teams costs, etc. has been skyrocketing.

This is in great part a fruit of competition. Yes, it's true: when it comes to colleges, competition INCREASES tuition costs. Why? Because colleges have to spend millions attracting students, and since demand for college is very price inelastic (but very marketing / public image elastic) increasing tuition costs is a natural thing.

For those unfamiliar with the concepts of demand elasticity, let me give Stanford as example: even though we've steadily increased tuition costs, demand (applications) have been steadily increasing. Why? Because we are regarded VERY highly, and students know that if they come here and graduate they WILL have a six-figure salary job and a promising career waiting for them at the door...

Why? Because Stanford IS one of the top colleges on the PLANET. Along with the whole UC system and the Ivy League schools, we make up a group of colleges that are well known and highly respected everywhere. And that is worth a lot of money.

(seriously -- I have yet to meet an adult human being on this planet who has NOT heard of Stanford University. Now THAT'S marketing)

There are only two ways of forcing a reduction in tuition costs: a) through Government intervention -- capping the tuition costs AND the marketing efforts. b) Through a widespread change in culture that would convince companies that Stanford alumni are worth no more no less than Community College alumni, even though quite possibly 80% of the US-educated people on company boards are either Ivy League, Stanford or UC alumni.


#5

The really "high salary" professors are usually free for the universities... actually, they're usually revenue generating. Why? Because while a chemical engineering professor may be paid 500K per year, he's also bringing in grants of several million per year. Demand is increased for the school, allowing it to raise its tuition rates. Unlike primary and secondary school teachers, professors generally bring value to the unversity.


#6

The funny part is that these guys generally don't do much teaching.


#7

That is very true, but that's not what they are there for... Nor it is what they are best at. They are "celebrity professors".

It is a dark side that I'm not too happy about. Fortunately Stanford is able to attract grants and private donations without having to hire celebrity professors... Unfortunately a lot of other Universities are not able to do the same.