College Finance Roundup

  image by flickr user 401(K)2012, cc license A lot of college financial news hit the internet over the weekend and today. Catch up on what you may have missed below.

A lot of college financial news hit the internet over the weekend and today. Catch up on what you may have missed below.

Inside Higher Ed: New Jersey Bill Would Freeze Tuition — at Private Colleges, Too

Legislation approved by the New Jersey Assembly’s higher education committee would freeze tuition for state residents for nine consecutive semesters– whether they attend a public or private college in the state.

Bloomberg: College Debt Leaves Generation X Grads Less Wealthy Than Parents

Most college-educated 30- and 40-somethings earn more than their parents did at the same age, yet they’re saving less. Student debt is partly to blame.

While 82 percent of Generation X Americans with at least a bachelor’s degree earn more than their parents did, just 30 percent have greater wealth. A smaller share of workers without college education — 70 percent — have surpassed their parents’ incomes yet almost half had higher wealth, according to a Pew Charitable Trusts report released today.

Today Money: Parents worry that high college costs will hurt their retirement, survey shows

As families struggle to pay the skyrocketing costs of higher education, a growing number of parents are concerned that the money they borrow for their child’s tuition will hurt their retirement. In a recent survey, a majority (54 percent) of the parents said they’re worried that their retirement will be jeopardized by student loan debt.

Financial Advisor Magazine: Parents Struggle To Save For College, CFP Board Finds

The high cost of living has prevented two-thirds of parents from putting money aside for their children’s college education, according to a recent CFP Board of Standards survey.

The survey also found that a third of parents were still repaying their own student loan debt, which hinders their ability to save for their children, said Eleanor Blayney, consumer advocate for the CFP Board.

Diverse Education: Analysis: Black Graduates More Apt to Carry Student Loan Debt

One out of every 2 Black college graduates since the year 2000 has graduated from college with more than $25,000 in undergraduate student loan debt ― a significantly higher portion than the 1 out of every 3 White students who did so, according to an analysis released Thursday by Gallup.

The unequal debt loads may help explain some of the disparities between Black and White college graduates in a number of areas that range from physical to financial well-being, even though members of both groups have achieved “the same propitious milestone in life, namely, a college degree,” the analysis states.

NY Times: The Upshot: Why Federal College Ratings Won’t Rein In Tuition 

College costs have been rising for decades. Slowing — or even better, reversing — that trend would get more people into college and help reduce student debt. The Obama administration is working on an ambitious plan intended to rein in college costs, and it deserves credit for tackling this tough job.

Unfortunately, I don’t think it’s going to work, at least not in controlling tuition at public colleges, which enroll a vast majority of students. The plan might dampen prices at expensive private colleges, but some of them may close if they can’t survive on lower tuition.

Diverse Education: The Hechinger Report: Colleges Leave Poor Students to Taxpayers as They Woo Rich

In what it calls “an elaborate shell game,” universities and colleges are shifting their financial aid from low-income students to high-income ones to bolster their prestige and raise them up the rankings, a new report says.

Meanwhile, according to the report by the nonprofit, nonpartisan New America Foundation, universities are leaving their poorest families to vie for a piece of billions of dollars in taxpayer-funded Pell Grants.

Because of this, the federal government continues to spend more and more on Pell Grants, which now total more than $32 billion, yet the lowest-income students end up borrowing more money than ever to pay for their higher educations.