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Nap Time!!!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Chancellor Bob went to the Senate meeting last week to talk about fees. I noticed an interesting piece which folks might have stuff to say about:
Ms. Winston asked if there's been a decrease in the number of poor students attending Berkeley due to increases in student fees, and also, asked if the money they were talking about would be free money for students, like grants and scholarships. Chancellor Birgeneau said last year, a year ago, there was no increase in fees, and that increased the debt burden to students. So not increasing fees made it worse for poor students. That's because the one-third set aside more than offset the increase in fees. This was a standard misunderstanding. People think that fees and debt burden were connected, but they were actually connected inversely. So the worst thing for poor students at that time would be to freeze fees, because that would decrease the financial aid available to them. That's what actually happened a year ago. Fees were frozen and that really hurt poor students. He realized that was counter-intuitive. They have not seen any decrease in the number of students from poor families. But if they were to have a rapid increase, and the self-help level were to go up, in five years, to $12,500 a year, he'd predict that would really inhibit students from poor backgrounds.
This seems like more of a flaw in the set-aside policy than anything else, but it's an interesting note.

posted by Beetle Aurora Drake 12/05/2007 04:40:00 PM #
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