I read Ben Seiberts letter in your May 29, 2015 issue, College tuition is sickeningly high. Ben is right, the costs of attending his college of choice, James Madison University, are through the roof. The comprehensive cost for the 2015-2016 academic year is $39,698 for an out-of-state student, which means that a four-year degree will cost $158,792, but as we all know, tuition will go up, so the costs will probably be in the $160,000 range.
I believe that a viable alternative is close by: CSM. Our tuition and fees for 2015-2016 are only $3,542. Add books and travel and you are looking at under $5,000 for the year. Multiply by two and the cost for two years (and an associate degree) would be under $10,000. Now, with our guaranteed transfer program, a student can seamlessly ease into James Madison University and the total cost for a baccalaureate degree would be $89,396– almost a $70,000 savings. The diploma that a transfer student receives is identical to one received by a student attending all four years. The only difference is the student will graduate with no debt or much less of it.
Cost should not be the only factor in selecting a college. We are now offering a Presidential Scholars Program at the Prince Frederick Campus. This program features a rigorous academic program, guaranteed scholarships, monthly luncheon meetings with speakers, internships, and study abroad opportunities.
Our nations growing student debt is a serious problem, but CSM has a viable answer.
Dr. Bradley M. Gottfried
President, College of Southern Maryland