Tag Archives: college

Day of action for education

Students and education advocates in California took to the streets today to protest budget cuts to public school programs. Youth Radio’s correspondents were following the story and collecting perspectives.

Asked what she thinks California will look like in ten years given what’s happening in public education today, 21-one-year-old Taylor Kohles said, “We need to change our priorities and fully fund education. If that doesn’t happen, it will create an education gap.”

Twenty-year-old UC Berkeley student Eddie Rivero said he has friends who will have to drop out of school because they’re undocumented immigrants who can’t get financial aid and are paying part of their tuition with scholarships. He said they won’t be able to cover costs as tuition rises.

For more on the protests, check out Youth Radio’s Twitter list of Day of Action participants.

Under one roof, or none at all

The job shortage for recent grads is forcing more young people to think about alternatives to getting their own apartments after finishing college and going out into the “real world.” Often this means moving back in with their folks. But those who can move in with family are the lucky ones – homelessness has also increased with this recession.

In many countries, young people often live with their parents until they get married and start a family of their own. In this country, “moving out” has become a rite of passage, but that’s changing, as The Takeaway reports in Many Generations, One Roof: “President Barack Obama does it, and according to a study by the AARP, so do 33 percent of all 18-to-49 year olds.”


Having an extra person in the house can be more costly for parents. Smart Money magazine mentioned this phenomenon in a piece about renovations in the current economy, explaining that having a child move back into the house as an adult can necessitate expensive changes – such as redoing an attic or adding a bathroom.

And whether it’s a boomerang kid grounded by a tough job market or an aging in-law whose portfolio losses nixed her own housing plans, adults usually cohabitate best when everyone’s got some privacy. After all, who wants to bring a date home to a room that shares a wall with his parents or be woken at odd hours when Grandpa blasts his TV at full volume?

Making Sense: New England also has some tips for cheap home renovation:

But not everyone has that kind of back up plan. EconomyBeat struck a nerve this morning when it linked to a post by someone who’d turned to drugs and became homeless after losing his job.

I lived in California and worked for a startup in the tech industry. I was laid off and as a result of my depression, fell ‘deeper’ into my meth addiction as a way out. This caused me to lose my apartment, and 99% of my belongings.

And he’s not alone. Julie Rose at Charlotte’s WFAE reports on the homelessness problem in North Carolina and a survey that’s trying to get people off the streets.

There are about 6,500 homeless men, women and children in Charlotte. Advocates think some 500 of those people are chronically homeless, meaning they’ve been on the street for at least a year. But that was just a guess.

Tackling tuition

Here in California, education has been making headlines this week, as the University of California board of regents voted to increase tuition more than 30%. And California is hardly alone. Across the country, education is being affected by the recession.

In New Hampshire, some students are facing a subprime loan crisis much like the housing one – except this time it’s loans to help cover rising tuition costs of higher education.

“In many cases private student loans come with variable interest rates that can top twenty percent. In addition, a number of recent graduates contend that the education they paid for included sub-par labs, mediocre instructors, and fell short of the quality education that was advertised.”

NewsHour’s Paul Solman reported that a new bill making its way through the Senate would move the student loan industry under the Department of Education, reducing the subprime risk.

In Michigan, among the areas hardest hit by recession, some recent graduates are staying true to their state.

“Anna Barson graduated from The University in Michigan and immediately moved to Washington D.C, and then New York. She’s discovered there’s a lot of grassroots activism in Detroit she wants to be a part of.
“I do feel some connection, and if I am serious about wanting to do social justice work, Detroit– I mean, it is in my home state, and I think it would be hypocritical of me to completely ignore that,” said Barson.”

Propublica reported on how the US Department of Education is dividing up stimulus funds to schools – and it’s turning into a competitive race to get any of that funding.

“Using an elaborate scoring system just announced, the program will benefit only those states that have already taken steps to shake up their school systems, the [Wall Street] Journal reports. “This is going to be highly competitive, and there are going to be a lot more losers than winners,” Education Secretary Arne Duncan told reporter Neil King Jr. Preliminary plans for the program provoked an outpouring of criticism, The New York Times reports, but the final rules have added flexibility. Some potentially volatile aspects remain – like President Barack Obama’s emphasis on charter schools – but the new rules invite states to describe “innovative public schools other than charter schools.”

There is some good news for veterans looking to go back to school, however. As Emilie Ritter reported for Montana Public Radio back in August, a new GI bill is sending those who’ve served back to college — for free.