Some colleges will cost over $90K for the first time this year– 'Generous' financial aid will supposedly mitigate the problem

​Some colleges and universities will cost students and their families over $95,000, but some argue that financial aid, in most cases, will reduce tuition and fees.

This year, some students and families will pay $95,000 for college, but some argue that financial aid, in most cases, will reduce tuition and fees.

According to the Associated Press, the cost of attending the University of Southern California is $95,000 per year. Other schools such as the University of Pennsylvania have an annual cost of $92,000 for attendance, Brown University at $92,000, Dartmouth College at $91,000, Boston College at $90,000, and Wellesley College at $92,000.

Some of these colleges, including Wellesley, are exceeding a $90,000 sticker cost for the first time.

Phillip Levine, a professor of economics at Wellesley College, where costs are above $90,000 for the first time, tried to reason that the sticker price isn’t exactly how much that’s paid out of pocket.

“But for most people, that is not how much they’re going to pay. The existence of a very generous financial aid system lowers that cost substantially,” Levine said.

Levine said oftentimes the sticker price influences decisions on where students go to college, which isn’t helpful.

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“People should be making educational decisions based on the actual cost they have to pay, not their perceived cost,” Levine said. “The problem is that the sticker price is the easiest number to know. It gets the most attention.”

Mark Kantrowitz, a financial aid expert, told the Associated Press that students and families are, on average, needing to come up with $10,000 of their own money per year to attend four-year colleges.

“So families are forced to borrow that money or come up with that money from some other source, and that’s on top of their share of college costs,” Kantrowitz said.

Research from the College Board indicates that private colleges had an average advertised costs of $60,000 last year, while that figure is $29,000 for public in-state colleges and $47,000 for public colleges that are out-of-state.

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“If you graduate and you don’t take on a ridiculous amount of debt, you should be able to repay that debt in a reasonable amount of time,” Kantrowitz said. “But if you drop out, you have the debt, but not the degree that can help you repay the debt.”