By Emily Curtsinger–
In the United States, public education is free for children up until the 12th grade. If one chooses to attend college, they must pay, get scholarships or take out student loans. Earlier this year, President Barack Obama presented his plan to make community college free for students that meet the qualifications. Could this be the start of something new? Should students have to pay for higher education?
College should be free to all students. Just like students have a right to elementary and secondary education, students should have a right to obtain higher education. If a person has a desire to learn more, they should not be forced to stop learning after high school due to a lack of money or connections. Should someone miss the opportunity to obtain a job just because they were not able to afford a college education?
“Getting a college education should be free,” junior Christina Franck says. “In order to obtain higher paying jobs, people need the opportunity to learn the skills to get these types of jobs.”
Obama’s plan woud offer two years of free tuition to students attending community college. This plan derives from the state of Tennessee’s guaranteed two years of free community college classes to students who maintain at least a 2.5 GPA or higher and are working towards a degree or plan on transferring to a four-year university.
“Forty percent of our college students choose community college,” Obama said. “Some are young and starting out. Some are older and looking for a better job. Some are veterans and single parents trying to transition back into the job market. Whoever you are, this plan is your chance to graduate ready for the new economy without a load of debt.”
This possibility of free tuition for community college students has many four-year university students thinking about free tuition for them.
“I believe that all people have the right to receive a college education,” sophomore Vivien Pham said. “If college education was free, there would be so many more opportunities for students who would not normally be going to college. It would also give high school students more motivation to achieve higher education.”
By making college education free, we would give people a chance to learn more and potentially achieve their goals.