Financial aid packages to determine future of college students’ decisions

By Justin Bostwick
February 12, 2009

More than ever, financial aid is determining the future of college students across the country. A large percentage of students are basing their decision on what school they are planning on attending by how much financial aid they are being offered.

Tuition for colleges seems to be skyrocketing more and more every year. At Cabrini, tuition for a year of two 18 credit semesters comes to a total of $29,100. That is not including room and board.

After adding a meal plan, books, a living situation and some other fees, the grand total hovers just around $40,000 a year, roughly about the average yearly salary without taxes. To many students, that has potential to put quite a dent in ones wallet.

Financial aid mixed with loans is the magical concoction for students to afford a college education, especially with how the economy sits today. The only problem here is that loans are becoming next to impossible to obtain because paying them back isn’t a walk in the park.

“It wasn’t as much of a problem for me to take out a loan as I thought it would be. The only difference is now once we graduate
college, we’re expected to pay the loans back at a quicker rate. That puts more pressure on us as recent graduates to get a secure job immediately,” Marlin Hoskinson, junior criminology major, said.

People are no longer choosing where they want to pursue their college education based on how nice the school is, but more on how much it’s going to cost them.

A lot of students are still following through with the standard applying to school process, but they aren’t always taking their first-choice school.

“I am a little worried about getting a job as soon as I graduate because of school loans. At the time of choosing a school, I chose Cabrini because it was close to home and because it seemed like a nice campus. I also knew the school had a pretty good reputation and I thought a degree from there wouldn’t look bad at all,” Carmen Trifiletti, junior business major, said.

Although just around 60 percent of public college students received some type of financial aid this year, classes are still somehow filling up. The importance of a degree has risen since issues with the economy have erupted because the competition in the job market has also increased.

“I really think it’s the fear of not being successful that drives students today about going through school to get a degree. There’s a lot of pressure on us once graduation day comes because we’re stepping out into the real world, where sadly we need money to make it,” Brian Boyle, junior advertising major at Temple University, said.

Whether the fear of not getting a secure job out of college or just not having a degree in a certain field, college students are fighting the financial battle for success knowing that the loans they will be paying back will be sizable.

Despite the ongoing financial crisis, students are still finding ways to get their loans to further their education. As long as the country faces financial issues that continue to deteriorate, the availability of school loans will as well.

Justin Bostwick

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