NEW YORK -- A new study by the College Board shows college tuition has risen dramatically over the last several years, to the tune of 24% over the last five years and nearly 8% in the last year alone.
State budget cuts at four-year public schools have led to an increase of in-state tuition and fees of 7.9 percent, or $555, to $7,605, while tuition and fees at private nonprofit colleges increased 4.5 percent, or $1,164, to $27,293. Both increases are significantly above inflation.
Community colleges, which educate about 40 percent of college students, cost a relatively affordable $2,713 annually. Yet tuition at public two-year colleges rose 6 percent, and state and local budget cuts paired with skyrocketing enrollment have prompted some schools to cut courses and limit enrollment.
The most expensive private colleges are approaching $60,000 in total cost to attend.
Tuition is climbing after a decade in which family income remained stagnant for 90 percent of Americans, and millions of Americans remain unemployed.
To help pay for the increased tuition and fees, 55 percent of bachelor's degree recipients at public colleges borrow money, and their debt is an average of $19,800 by graduation.