College attainment

By DAVE KITCHELL

Pharos-Tribune staff writer

This month, the bills for freshmen heading off to Purdue, Indiana, Indiana State and Ball State will total just about what a part-time salary for a year will bring home.

Many students are having to work to make ends meet if they have little or no scholarship money, but want to better themselves by getting a college education and possibly a degree.

That opportunity is one that could be getting away from more families and the next generation of Indiana high school students. The National Center for Public Policy and Education has reported what many already may know: The cost of college is rising faster than personal income. At some point, something has to give, and college degrees may be one of them. While students from other states can enroll at Notre Dame, Valparaiso, DePauw, Wabash and other private schools that cost tens of thousands annually, many students who have grown up here and may spend the rest of their lives here may never get the chance. The Community College of Indiana is making college more affordable through Ivy Tech State College campuses, but will that be enough to raise personal incomes and make the Indiana work force ready for the jobs in the rest of the 21st century economy?

The issue is the focus of this week’s Pharos-Tribune Sound Off question:

What can Indiana officials do to reduce the cost of college to Hoosier families?

Callers have until 5 p.m. Friday to call Sound Off at 722-5000, Ext. 5195. Callers are asked to leave their name, daytime phone number and opinion. Outside local exchanges, callers may dial toll-free at (800) 676-4125, Ext. 5195.

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