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Tuition Hikes Affect Hispanic Students
By Emily Zaborniak
Education leads to achievement, yet with every passing year, the dream of being able to afford college turns into a harsh reality governed by dollar signs. Tuition is increasing exponentially, while household income and pay rates are merely holding steady or decreasing. According to a report released by the Campaign for America's Future, prospective Hispanic students have been significantly affected by the economic incongruence.

"Education is the key to a better life and success," said Rep. Hilda L. Solis (D-CA). "For most Latino students, college affordability and financial aid are the determining factors when making decisions about their college education. Therefore, it is disgraceful that the Republican leadership slashed federal student aid by $12 billion, while college costs keep skyrocketing." While Solis' rhetoric is quite pointed, it is a fact that the U.S. government has cut student aid.

With rising tuition costs, great dependence on student loans and government assistance becomes necessary. According to the Campaign for America's Future report, the availability of financial aid is especially crucial for hardworking Hispanic families, who in 2005 gave up an average of 32% of median household income to allow family members to attend public institutions and 74% to fund family members' educations at private colleges. In Caucasian households, the sacrifice was still considerable, with 24% of median income going to public institutions and 54% going to private institutions, but not nearly as overwhelming.

For potential students, the double-edged sword is sharp: either leave college with a massive amount of debt or forgo higher education entirely. It's not an easy decision to make, and the issue becomes more complicated as managing loans becomes more difficult. If a student can afford to take out a loan, he or she might notice the monetary safety net thinning each year, as interest rates climb and the competition to lock in private sector loans intensifies. Something has to give, and considering recent Congressional actions, it won't be the federal government.

Sources such as Tim Jones and Jodi Cohen of the Los Angeles Times and Kim Clark of The New Republic report that the rate of Stafford Loans will see a hefty hike to 6.8% fixed from the current variable rate averaging 6.1%. For parents struggling under the weight of PLUS loans, a rate increase to 8.5% fixed is sure to take its toll. The good news is that even though it comes with a price tag, help is available. Also, there are many businesses that can help with post-graduation consolidation and alleviate the stress of debt.

The realities of the economic cycle do not change. If enrollment goes down and institutions lose money, they compensate by raising tuition—making it difficult for many prospective students to attain the goal of higher education. However, when searching the job market, a candidate with a college degree is considered more desirable; and the jobs that demand college degrees as prerequisites will more than likely offer higher salaries. So is it better to break into the cycle early on with student loans and debt, rather than limiting your opportunities by forgoing a college education? It may be a question more challenging than those asked in school.


Article Title : Tuition Hikes Affect Hispanic Students
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Education is one of the most basic right of any human, but with the increase in prices and the costs involved in education this has made these rights turn into a privilege which very few can enjoy. Any normal person today in the whole of United States has to take an education loan at one point of time to pay for their education fees.

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