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Most Are Thrilled With NY’s College Tuition Program, But Who’s Not so Thrilled?

Graduates Celebrate On The Southbank
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First, the good news:

Students from New York’s middle and low income families will benefit from Governor Cuomo’s Excelsior Scholarship, enabling them to attend New York’s two and four year public colleges. The program has been recognized and praised as something that will help more people access higher education. New York will be the only state doing so, according to CNN.

In order to take full advantage of the Excelsior Scholarship, students must take at least 30 course credits a year, maintain passing grades, and remain working in the state for five years after they graduate among a few other mandates.

The not-so-good-news is that there are critics.

For the most part, it’s the private colleges that fear it will make them less competitive. They say that students will start to solely seek out state colleges, where the scholarship is implemented. They anticipate that applications and enrollment will drop.

Andrew Cuomo’s own alma mater, Fordham University, is one of those colleges, according to the New York Post. They also say it reduces the choices that students will have. In other words, students won’t get the money they would get to go to the college most appropriate for their course of study.

The costs to taxpayers is estimated at $163 million in the first year, so there’s that issue as well for critics to harp on, CNN reports.

My take on all this is the old adage — if you think education is expensive, try ignorance.

I’m all for it, because I think it will improve higher education in New York overall, and then we will become an education destination state, as Massachusetts is now. It’s the old theory — if there’s a town with a lot of restaurant choices, it becomes the town people flock to for dinner, because the competition makes each restaurant better and you have many choices in one place.

In spite of what the critics are pointing out to us, it’s a good move, Gov!

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