8/19/2016

Hillary Clinton's plan for free public universities an attempt to bankrupt private colleges

From the Sun-Sentinel newspaper in Florida.
Hillary Clinton has her heart set on fundamentally transforming higher education in the United States. Just three weeks ago, in her Democratic National Convention speech, Clinton pledged to work with former rival Bernie Sanders “to make college tuition-free for the middle class and debt-free for all,” and in her speech August 11 in suburban Detroit, in which she laid out her vision for improving the nation’s economy, Clinton reiterated the importance of providing low-income and middle-income Americans with the opportunity to attain a college education without debt. . . . 
The chief component to Clinton’s plan to resolve the growing student debt crisis is to make public colleges tuition-free for most students and to eliminate tuition at all community colleges. According to Clinton’s campaign website, under her plan, “By 2021, families with income up to $125,000 will pay no tuition at in-state four-year public colleges and universities. And from the beginning, every student from a family making $85,000 a year or less will be able to go to an in-state four-year public college or university without paying tuition.” . . . 
Many private college leaders are wondering just that. In an August 2 report by Politico, Patricia McGuire, the president of Trinity Washington University and a self-described supporter of Clinton, says the free-tuition proposal would put schools like hers “gravely at risk” and warns the policy could “ruin some of the places where low-income students get the best education and are most likely to be successful.” 
Some might say these fears are unwarranted; after all, private colleges already charge significantly more than public colleges, and demand at many private schools is as high as ever. . . .

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