Sadly and predictably, those universities are getting resistance from the left.
“The Texas State University System is the state’s third major university system to announce the development of a bachelor’s degree that only costs $10,000 — a response to Gov. Rick Perry’s 2011 call for more affordable higher education offerings,” the Texas Tribune reported last week. “Sul Ross State University Rio Grande College, an upper-division college in the Texas State University System, has partnered with Southwest Texas Junior College to create a new ‘10K Scholars Program.’ Its degree model, which will become available in fall 2013, appears to be something of a hybrid of the previous two models introduced in the state.”
These universities are offering a serious education for serious students.
“In the Texas State model, the opportunity is available to high school students who graduate with at least a 2.5 GPA and at least 30 hours of college credit completed,” the Tribune explained. “Students then spend a year at the junior college before completing their degrees at Sul Ross State University Rio Grande College. The total cost would be capped at $10,000 through deferred scholarships — worth $2,122 — that students earn provided they maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and take 15 hours of classes each semester, allowing them to graduate in three years.”
The students would earn a degree in biology, chemistry or mathematics.
But of course, the left doesn’t like any challenge to the current system.
“You get what you pay for in higher education, just like in most things,” said Texas A&M University Professor Kim Quaile Hill, in an op-ed piece for the Austin American-Statesman.
She looks at Macon State University in Georgia, which also offers a $10,000 degree.
But that’s comparing a variable you can’t measure — the “value” of a degree — to one you can — the cost of the degree.
What we do know is that half of all college graduates can’t find a job in their fields of study, yet have tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debts.
So a degree program that minimizes at least the debt factor is a good thing. And with the current and perennial need for biology, chemistry and math teachers, those students are virtually assured of jobs, if they desire them.
The universities that have offered such a practical and common-sense solution to the rising cost of college are doing the right thing. Other universities should take notes.