No, really: Birmingham-Southern announces a massive tuition reduction

ayy lmao free college
ayy lmao free college
Have you ever seen a more professional looking photoshop? Totally not – via James Ozment, bsc.edu, and msn.com

College tuition makes people angry.  Take a look at a graph of tuition prices over time, and it’s easy to see why!  Birmingham-Southern College takes a stand against tuition inflation, announcing a drastic published price reduction today.

Full disclosure, I study at BSC right now, it’s how I got this heads-up!

As iPhones hit $1,000, it’s a relief to see something DECREASE in price.  Higher education “sticker shock,” as BSC calls it, has only gotten worse as inflation seems to leave wage increases in the dust.  At the same time, “college remains the greatest driver of socioeconomic mobility in America.”  Everyone from CNBC to the federal government to former presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders has tried to tackle, or at least highlight, the problem.  But, at least until recently, few colleges have taken substantive action.

College costs have risen for decades
Here’s the problem – via NYT

Birmingham-Southern College yesterday announced it would slash its tuition prices by just over 50%.  In addition to slashing rates for new students, it has issued a freeze on tuition for current students.

“The marketplace spoke, and we listened” – BSC President Linda Flaherty-Goldsmith

While changing the sticker might not seem like a lot, it’s a big deal.  Publishing a price closer to what people will pay after need-based, merit-based, and other scholarships removes a psychological barrier from many parents’ minds.

Many colleges bend over backward to award as much financial aid as every qualified, low-income family needs to give their child a better education and a better hope for the future.  However, that reality often isn’t reflected by published tuition prices.  This disconnect often discourages students with the highest potential from applying for and receiving financial aid.

birmingham southern aerial photo
Ever since I wrote on drones, I’ve been wanting to get a view of campus like this (but faster) – via johnsonkreis.com
What’s next

The tuition reset will not apply until Fall 2018.  Shame, really, I’ll have graduated by then (knock on wood)!  I just hope that this encouragement from BSC catches on.

Author: James Ozment

I’m a Birmingham native who loves music, cycling, reading, and tech. Find me on the campus of Birmingham-Southern College, in Avondale, or hanging out with my cat