"Free" is a word with a powerful appeal. And right now it's being tossed around a lot, followed by another word: "college."
A new nonprofit, Redeeming America's Promise, announced this week that it will seek federal support to make public colleges tuition-free. That effort is inspired by "Hope" and "Promise" programs like the one in Kalamazoo, Mich., which pays up to 100 percent of college tuition at state colleges and universities for graduates of the city's public high schools.
Ross Reynolds speaks with Andrew Rossi, director of a new documentary "Ivory Tower" that asks the question, is a college education worth the skyrocketing cost of tuition?
Rossi, himself a Harvard and Yale graduate, examines the one trillion dollar student debt (now higher than credit card debt), the reasons higher education costs more, and the shake-out out that could take down many smaller liberal arts colleges.
There are more than 7,000 colleges in the U.S., and 21.8 million students enrolled in them. That's potentially 21.8 million opinions about what makes a school "the best."
The penalty for a bad choice can be huge. The cost of a degree continues to soar, graduation rates vary widely from college to college, and a growing body of evidence suggests that picking a supposedly "top" school doesn't necessarily pay off later in life.
Graduation Season? More like Disinvitation Season.
As students across the country prepare for pomp and circumstance, college and university administrators are grappling with a series of commencement speech boondoggles.
This year alone, nearly a dozen big-name commencement speakers — including the head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice — have been invited to speak at graduation ceremonies, only to withdraw or have their invitations rescinded in the wake of campus protests.
Kal Penn is best known for his stoner role as Kumar in the "Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle” films. But Penn is also a former member of President Obama’s administration, where he worked on youth, art, and Asian American outreach.
Recently, Princeton alum Susan Patton prompted a heated discussion when she urged women at the Ivy League school to find a husband before graduating. She argued that men regularly marry women who are younger, less intelligent and less educated. Patton thinks Princeton women should marry a man who is their intellectual equal. What do you think about the "Mrs." degree? Ross Reynolds talks with listeners about the poorly received push for a "Mrs." degree.
The average cost of a four-year public college shot up 6 percent last year to over $17,000 a year on average. Private colleges are up to over $35,000 a year (beer and togas not included.) So how do parents pay for college these days without going broke? Ross Reynolds talks with Kalman Chany, author of "Paying for College Without Going Broke," about the GET program and other ways to fund your child's higher education.
The crushing cost of student debt is leading schools, students and parents to look at alternatives provided by online learning. A leader in the field, Karen Symms Gallagher, dean of the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education, sits down with Ross Reynolds for a discussion about the future of online learning for credit.