By Sabrina Carroll
Elm Staff Writer
College is the best four years of your life, but those four years come at a cost, and a really expensive one at that.
The cost of attending Washington College for one year is more than $52 thousand. That does not include laundry, books, or extra activity costs.
No one has 50 grand to whip out of their back pocket, and college students know that better than anyone. Here’s a special look at how WC students and faculty look at the ever-growing cost of tuition and fees and how you can change the bill.
First, it is necessary to look at the reasons surrounding the tuition increase. Due to inflation, the cost of everything has gone up.
Mark Hampton, vice president for Finance and Administration, said the college has two options: “To increase revenues to cover cost increases or to reduce spending.”
In order to make sure students are offered an exceptional education, the “strategy always includes some increase to tuition,” Hampton said.
There are a variety of ways in which students can manage their tuition bill, including being “mindful of costs you can control,” trips to the mall and video games purchases.
An on campus job is a great way to rake in some extra cash. Natalie Story, associate director of the Office of Student Aid, said work-study is more than a way to increase income. Work study develops “critical thinking and time management skills…future employers will appreciate” students able to balance schoolwork and a job.
Senior Tye Van Horn is proving that raising money for tuition can be more than just a chore. He started a fundraiser called “Help Tye Not Drop Out of College” on indiegogo.com. As of Saturday, Sept. 13 Van Horn has raised $1,140 out of his goal of $4,000. In return for contributions towards his tuition, he is offering a variety of quirky “perks.”
By contributing a certain amount, donors can receive a sweet letter of thanks, a fun hangout, a personalized film, or a song. “I want to be able to give as much as possible in return for whatever I get,” Van Horn said.
Van Horn believes the increase in tuition has to do with “the small WC” not wanting to be “so small” anymore.
“Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Don’t be as proud as I am. No matter where you are, there’s someone who loves you somewhere, and if they can’t help you, there are people all over who are willing to help someone in need,” he said.
Communication with the Financial Aid Office and living off campus are other ways of dealing with financial issues.
The bad news is, no matter which way students look at it, tuition bills will go up every year. However, managing financial stress does not have to be a total hardship. Tuition continues to be high, so students might as well get creative with how to deal with it.