Chart: 20 Years of Tuition Increases

Chart: 20 Years of Tuition Increases

tuition cost growth

For those of you who have missed out on the obvious, tuition has risen precipitously since the mid-70s and this rise hasn’t abated one bit in the past 20 years. As this chart from US News and World Report shows, tuition costs have about tripled since 1995 across the board, whether we look at state or private schools.

Back in 1995, when I first started college, one could all but get a degree for about what a single year of classes costs today. No wonder the parents of today’s students, who in their time were able to enroll and figure things out as they went along, panic when the full ramifications of these cost increases sink in. At these prices, making a mistake, dropping out, changing majors, or getting a degree with little marketplace value is no longer merely a slightly embarrassing thing. It can lead to financial ruin.

To say the least, one must prepare well ahead of time to address this level of expense if one has any shot at succeeding. As the old adage says, failing to plan is planning to fail. Nowhere has it been more true than in today’s college environment.