Cost of College = Disposable Income ÷ 2

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Check that price tag.

The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) reports that tuition and all mandatory fees will increase by an average of six percent at Virginia’s 15 public, four-year institutions for the upcoming academic year.

That’s troubling – if not particularly surprising – but it’s also not the number that begs for attention. SCHEV notes:

“Next year, the average total charge for an in-state undergraduate student living on campus at a four-year institution is estimated to be 47.7% of per capita disposable income.”

Half. Sending one student to college for one year will cost about half of a typical Virginia resident’s disposable income.

It’s no wonder families want to know what return they will see on this investment. Or that some people are starting to see a college degree as a commodity.

Many institutions of higher education are looking to increase enrollment as a key means of addressing their own financial challenges. As they continue marketing to families – in Virginia and beyond – it’s never been more important to demonstrate clear results around student support, completion and career success.

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