April 06, 2012 by Op-Ed
We, the student body of Drexel University, have suffered too long under the weight of massive tuition on our shoulders. Something needs to be done. The amount of debt we incur at Drexel over our four plus years here is estimated to be three times that of students at other schools. Is this really acceptable?
I know what you’re thinking: What can speaking up possibly do to affect the never-ending mountainous tuition costs? Contrary to what you may believe, speaking up could be a powerful tool for change. Where would the world be without people the likes of Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, or even George Washington and the first colonists of America? These people all stepped up to defend their rights against an injustice that was going on. Is the quality of education at Drexel really that much better than other schools that they can justify charging $20,000-30,000 more per year?
Understandably, Drexel does have needs for which it must collect this money. The costs of hiring administration, sponsoring research, building new improvements to an already scenic campus, maintaining that campus, and paying for financial aid to help students come to the school do add up.
Drexel works hard to make sure that some of the best faculty are hired and maintained in order to provide the best education possible for its students. Also, Drexel funds many research projects with hopes that new things will be discovered. As recently as 2005, Drexel spent close to $86 million to fund research that could possibly provide patents for new projects and innovations. Drexel gives out an average of $15,000 a year per student in grants. With an enrollment that comprises over 11,000 undergraduate students, you can imagine that this cost is one of the University’s biggest expenditures.
President Obama has recently pushed the legislature to lessen the federal assistance that is given to universities, both private and public. He claims that federal assistance should be based upon two things: the results of students coming out of the university and the ability of the university to maintain a low, fair tuition. Even so, other universities have to work hard to provide the same materials and opportunities as those of Drexel and still manage to maintain a lower tuition than Drexel does.
What can realistically be done? Obviously we don’t have the power to actually lower the cost of tuition ourselves, but social activism can be one of the most powerful tools. Maybe the thing we have to do is to spread the word. I know that sounds a bit cliche because everyone should know about the tuition costs, but in my opinion, people have come to an acceptance that the tuition is just high and that nothing can be done to change it. Drexel feels as if tuition doesn’t have to be changed because freshman will still apply and want to come to Drexel regardless of how high tuition is. So let’s show them that something does need to be done. Let’s show them that this massive tuition is not acceptable. Spread the word. Help yourself and those around you for the sake of present and for future Drexel students.
Biological Sciences, Class of 2015