The Economy and the Student

By Nicole Eatz
Staff Writer

This year students are struggling with the high costs of college. In my opinion, the bad economy should not affect students. No one should be penalized for not having enough money. That is why we have financial aid. Many students have to stay on campus instead of experiencing the off-campus atmosphere. Most students would like to get off campus for at least a year, but with the expenses of college, it’s becoming nearly impossible. Students now need to be working multiple jobs while being a full time student. Their money is spent on necessities only, never on what they really want.

A problem occurring in Pennsylvania is the governor and state Congressmen’s inability to pass a state budget. This in turn affected the state’s ability to pay out need-based grants for students to attend Pennsylvania colleges and universities for this fall semester. Some colleges decided to front the grant money for the students but only for the first semester. Adding to problem, Governor Ed Rendell put a hold on $386 million in grants for 172,000 students across the commonwealth.

Now students are looking to the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) for help. The amount of students expected to receive grants is up 11 percent from the recipients in 2008-09. Colleges and universities were having a difficult time trying to figure out how students could start classes when their PHEAA funding from the state was being held up. Now students must wait for the state budget to be passed to see if they will get the money they need to continue out their education.

I think it is sad that money is something that we need to stress over while in school. Loans are meant to be stressful once we graduate and have to pay them off. The bad economy is affecting everyone but from researching and talking to other students, it seems students are struggling to pay for school because loans are being cut down or are on hold. The universities and colleges are doing all they can to help their students out. They wanted to make sure students were able to start classes on time and not be penalized for their loans not coming through. This is a very hard and stressful time for everyone. Like I said, I don’t think students should be affected by this bad economy. I believe the government should find a way to get all loans that are needed to students because, once again, we are the future.