Stop College Tuition Hikes in Massachusetts

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Target: Massachusetts Department of Higher Education

Goal: Stop state colleges in Massachusetts from raising the tuition burden on students.

Eight of nine major state colleges in Massachusetts have voted this year to raise tuition prices for undergraduate students. While many schools are claiming lack of government assistance and say the increases are necessary to maintain operating costs, this is hard to believe. Bridgewater State University, for example, will be using the 6.6% increased tuition income to build a $100 million science center on campus, with only a quarter of the money raised going to financial aid for students.

Schools that will see tuition hikes in 2013 include UMass, Fitchburg State, Bridgewater State, Worcester State, Framingham State, Mass College of Liberal Arts, Mass Maritime, and Salem State. Students will be expected to pay around $20,000 a year to attend these four-year public universities after the tuition hikes.  While increases are currently centered in Massachusetts, this is also the trend across the United States; college tuition has climbed 15% between 2008 and 2010, and student loan debt is at an unparalleled level in the country’s history.

It goes without saying that having a well educated, capable workforce is essential to keeping the United States competitive with other technologically advanced countries.  However, students are graduating with such massive debt that the cost of attending college is beginning to outweigh the benefit. If we keep going down this path, students will be too indebted to these major profit centers to actually be able to contribute to a more intelligent, advanced society.  Tell the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education to stop the college tuition hikes and allow all residents of the state access to higher education.

PETITION LETTER:

To the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education:

Rising tuition costs at public universities in Massachusetts are detrimental to students, the state, and to the country. During these hard economic times it is unreasonable to expect students to shoulder the burden of over $80,000 in debt to obtain an education. Since 2008, the price of attending public universities has increased more than 15%, with no explanation of an equal increase in operational costs.

Tuition increases should be a last resort. I stand with governor Deval Patrick in saying that these tuition hikes are unnecessary, untimely, and the product of mismanagement by universities. Putting a heavier burden on students hurts not just the individual, but the country as a whole.  Please put a stop to these tuition increases as soon as possible.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: allaboutuni2307 via Flickr

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