Gov. raises college tuitions

By Suzanne Cho

The goal of most students is to work hard, get good grades, and enter a good college. One of the main impediments presented to students along this path is the steep cost of higher education. This will be especially harder in coming years due to rising tuition costs.
Washington State Gov. Chris Gregoire’s proposal, if passed, will make it harder for students to pay for college. Gregoire has asked the government to increase tuition of state universities by 28 percent over the next two years.
“I’m asking our families and students to sacrifice a little bit,” she said. “Under the proposal, the tuition of four-year universities would rise by 14 percent each year over the next two years. The tuition of community and technical colleges would rise by 7 percent per year.”
MTHS counselor Angela Nivens encourages students not to get disheartened. “Students must continue their education, but the tuition cost of college is putting a barrier in their way of getting a good education that will impact the rest of their lives,” she said, “however, paying for college is the best investment over a lifetime. I paid through my college with loans and work-study and got through college. I never regret paying for college.”
Nivens believes that students should not pick a college based on cost alone; decisions should be made based on the programs that specific colleges sponsor, what the student will get in return for their investment, whether the school will fits with the overall character of the student and also the overall cost.
College tuition costs now have greatly increased compared to costs of college in previous years. “I went to Ohio State University in 1997 (9 years ago),” said Robin Cogburn, MTHS Spanish teacher, “where the tuition was about $20,000 a year. I also went to Eastern Washington University in 1985 (21 years ago), where the tuition was $3,000 a year. “
Becki Burguesser, a recent graduate and current English teacher says, “UC Davis in Sacramento California, an out-of-state university, costed about $16,000 a year in 2003-2006. Graduate school at University of Washington cost about $9,000 in 2007-2009.”
Gil Comeau, science teacher, attended Harvard back in 1971-1974. He recalls, “Back then it cost about $15,000 a year. Now, it is around $50,000 a year to go there.”
Gregoire’s proposal will increase the tuition costs further if it is passed. Counselors and teachers suggest is a good idea for students to talk to their parents for ways to pay for college as well as look to available loans and scholarships. It is possible to go to college with the available loans, scholarships, and other opportunities.