Everyday we read more and more about how economically damaged California is becoming, and how programs for schools that the state has previously paid for, will now be cut or significantly decreased. UC and Cal State universities are especially affected by these significant cuts in funding because now the affordable tuition and good education from a state school system is becoming a much more difficult possibility.
As a private college, it might seem like Oxy is immune to these state budget crisis problems, but unfortunately, that is not the reality. As California continues to cut and eliminate valuable education programs because of the budget overruns, state run financial aid programs such as the Cal Grant program are being greatly affected by the reduced funds. Since the Cal Grant program is a large contributor to Oxy’s financial aid program, these budget cuts are going to make it harder for Oxy students who need financial aid to pay their tuition.
Beyond program cuts, there are possible broader impacts on future high school senior classes who could potentially apply to Oxy. For example, since UC schools like Berkeley and UCLA are going to have to raise the price of tuition and accept less California students because they pay less, they will begin to accept more qualified out of state students to increase their tuition revenue. Now people from out of state who may have been considering Oxy because they thought that they would not have a good chance at getting into a UC school because they are not from California, are going to want to apply to the UC schools and pay a lower tuition than they would if they came to Oxy.
Also, with our struggling economy, opportunities for finding jobs are becoming much more difficult and the cost of living in California is becoming much more expensive. With these economic downfalls, students might see the California location as a less attractive destination. As we look at the current status of the California budget crisis, we cannot hold the attitude that Oxy will be untouched by all of these issues. We must take precaution for the impacts that could be felt on our campus during the next few years.
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