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KEEP TUITION INCREASES IN PERSPECTIVE 


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Here’s the bad news: there’s no escaping the fact that college prices are rising. According to recently released reports from the College Board, most students and their families can expect to pay more this year than last year for tuition and fees, depending on the type of college.

Grant Aid
Believe it or not though, there is good news. Despite college price increases, a college education remains an affordable choice for most families. In 2012-13, full-time undergraduates at public four-year institutions receive an estimated average of $5,750 in grant aid from all sources and federal tax benefits to help them pay average published tuition and fees. The students pay an average net price of just over $2,900.

Sticker Price vs. Affordability
Although some of the college price tags you hear about can be quite daunting - $35,000 or more for yearly tuition and fees - most colleges are more affordable than you might think. For example, did you know that about 50 percent of students at four-year schools pay $10,300 or less for tuition and fees? After grants are taken into consideration, the net price the average undergraduate pays for a college education is significantly lower than the published tuition and fees. And remember, other forms of financial aid will further reduce the amount your family will actually pay..

Average Costs
For the 2012-13 academic year, average tuition and fees range from $3,131 per year at public two-year colleges and $8,655 at public bachelor’s colleges.
The average cost for tuition and fees at a private four-year college in 2012-13 was $29,056 (up 4.2 percent from the previous year); for a public four-year college the average cost was $8,655 (up 4.8 percent from the previous year).

Consider College an Investment
While the cost of college may feel out of reach to many students and families in today’s economy, according to these studies, a college education is critical to long-term financial security.
According to the College Board study Trends in Higher Education, Education Pays, median earnings of bachelor’s degree recipients working full-time year-round in 2008 were $55,700, $21,900 more than median earnings of high school graduates.
Individuals with some college but no degree earned 17 percent more than high school graduates working full-time year-round. Their median after-tax earnings were 16 percent higher.
For young adults between the ages of 20 and 24, the unemployment rate in the fourth quarter of 2009 for high school graduates was 2.6 times as high as that for college graduates.
College-educated adults are less likely than others to be obese. In addition, children living in households with more educated parents are less likely than other children to be obese.
Whatever sacrifices you and your child make for his or her college education in the short term are more than repaid in the long term..

Source: “College Board’s Trends in College Pricing 2012,” and “Education Pays 2010.”"

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