Many students see college as a way out of their protected homes into a life of freedom. Future undergrads choose the school they want to attend by reputation, class size, events, etc., but the one deciding factor is tuition.
Regrettably, in late July of this year, the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) announced the maximum Cal Grant A and B will be reduced, sending students into a panic as to how they were going to make ends meet to pay off their tuition.
The news came as a shock to many students at Vanguard since the announcement was made a week before financial registration had to be finalized. Sophomore Jenny Moran was taken aback by the news since she expected to receive extra money from her loans and grants.
However, Moran realized she was not the only one struggling with this problem, she saw the positive in the situation. “We all get scholarships and extra help from VU if needed– it’s not so bad,” she said. “I do feel that the extra fees are a little unnecessary though.”
Most Vanguard students were sent into a panic and many had to resort into making quick decisions to cover up what was lost. Freshman Jonathan Peña had to take out another loan, despite the financial aid he already had, which caused him more stress calling it a lifelong commitment he now has to worry about.
Since Vanguard is a private university, tuition is a bit higher compared to public colleges, which makes the decrease even more evident. For senior Valeria Campos, the possibility of not coming back to Vanguard came to mind because of the high tuition and the reduced grants, as she did not want to add an extra financial strain to herself or her family.
Governor Jerry Brown made the decision to cut money from the CSAC in the 2012-2013 Fiscal Budget Act and hoped the decision to cut money from the Cal Grants fund will help California in the long run to reduce the state’s debt. This choice ended up affecting about 190,000 students all over California.
The CSAC has also instated new regulations regarding which schools and students can be eligible for Cal Grants. Schools must keep the graduation rate above 30 percent and keep their federal loan Cohort Default Rate (CDR) above 15.5 percent; otherwise they will be ineligible to receive grants. As of now, there are about 153 schools that no longer receive Cal Grants.
Because these cuts are now enacted, students will have to find a way to pay off tuition by either taking out loans, work more hours, or finding financial support from family.
Check out the graphic below from OnlineClasses.org to see more information about the increase of student loans and debt, and how online courses may be a viable way of countering these issues: