Student loan debt is a crisis, disproportionately impacting economically disadvantaged students and families.
Free tuition is a conversation worth having. Berea College has been paying for students' tuition for more than 130 years, but this isn't about us. This is about what a tuition free education could mean for society as a whole. Those best equipped to tell that story are our alumni. And the best way for us to contribute to the national conversation is to amplify their voices.
Berea gives us the opportunity to end generational poverty.
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If tuition was free, we would have a vastly more equitable and just society….and this is a less measurable thing, but I think we would have a genuinely happier population of people who could pursue what they wanted, for the reasons that they wanted.
When you treat education like a consumer good, it limits it to just those who could afford it. However, the distribution of wealth does not equal the distribution of intellect.
I grew up in rural Tennessee. I did not even own a computer before I came to college. For so many of us, free tuition represents the opportunity that we wouldn’t otherwise have had. It’s life-changing.
The value of free, for me, was freedom. I was able to create a career path that objectively did not exist when I started college, because I didn’t have the burden of debt.