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ERIC Number: EJ832546
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb-27
Pages: 1
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0009-5982
Don't Fix the Student-Aid System. Kill It
Ronstadt, Robert
Chronicle of Higher Education, v55 n25 pA36 Feb 2009
The American student-aid system has long been based on a tacit promise to provide students with the means to complete their college education and ensure that money is not a barrier to getting a degree. Unfortunately, says the writer, student aid has become little more than a marketing mechanism that permits colleges to maximize tuition dollars through spiraling price discrimination. Because institutions have tailored their prices to fit their own particular circumstances, financial aid has morphed into a "debt for diploma" system that fosters ever-rising tuitions, fees, and room-and-board charges, while placing many colleges and universities beyond the financial reach of qualified and promising high-school seniors. While acknowledging that a problem that has developed over decades will also take time to solve, the writer urges that a solution must be found, but that modifying the current system will not address the tuition problem. What is needed, writes Ronstadt, are new strategies that are not predicated on a system that uses financial-aid packages to maximize tuition dollars. Fundamentally sound business practice, the author advocates, would be fair, transparent, good public policy, and a sound public investment.
Chronicle of Higher Education. 1255 23rd Street NW Suite 700, Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 800-728-2803; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A