Mar. 3rd, 2008

heron61: (Default)
Here's a fascinating short NYT article about a recent and IMHO excellent decision by Brown University

Brown University is eliminating tuition for students whose parents earn less than $60,000, after decisions by fellow Ivy League universities to bolster financial aid as their endowments grow.

The university, in Providence, R.I., said on Saturday that it also planned to substitute grants for student loans in the financial aid packages of students whose families earned less than $100,000 a year. The new program cuts reliance on loans for all students regardless of family income, the university said in a statement posted on its Web site.

Brown also announced plans to increase tuition by 3.9 percent for the 2008-9 academic year to $36,928. With room and board, the costs are $47,740 for one year.
I read a while back about how Ivy League university tuitions were going up rapidly, while their endowments were also growing, which struck me as very wrong given the especially sorry state of student financial aid in the US. In vivid contrast, I see this as a wonderful step, that I'd love to see other universities take. Of course, I also see this as a more general principle that should be applied as widely as possible. I'm reminded of the fact that in Finland, fines for traffic-related offenses are based both on the severity of the offense and the driver's income, which once resulted in a multi-millionaire receiving a $71,400 speeding ticket, as well as a few $10,000 speeding tickets to other exceptionally wealthy people. Of course, I see a fair amount of value (as well as a few serious problems) with Marx's ideas.

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