The University of California undergraduates have been protesting and complaining and generally whinging about the recent decision of the UC Regents to up their fees by 32%, making tuition and fees about $10,000 per year. The national average is about $7,000 but that source has no range info.
Well, I was around one of the UC campuses during a rather long-distant prior episode of this sort of thing. The students were unjustifiable whiners then and they still are now.
U.C. Berkeley offers more courses taught by more Nobel Laureates than Yale. Yet Yale charges $28,400 per year in tuition and fees, while Berkeley charges $5858.
Three UC campuses made it into a list of top University/College bargains for 2009.
The reason for this is obvious and frankly I'm surprised that there weren't another 2-3 UCs making this list. Probably they would have if it didn't look too bad. The UCs are fantastic Universities and for that class of undergraduate education (I'm a small college fan, myself) you really can't do much better. So if the costs are *below* those of other inferior state Universities...well, the California students don't really have much call to complain, do they? At worst the recent fee increases brings them closer to market value, but they are hardly getting rooked.
And let me point out another thing. The ire has all been directed at the evil Regents who have made this steep uptick in fees. Wrong direction.
How many of you students have spent years lobbying and voting for higher taxes in support of higher ed? How many have been browbeating their parents and neighbors and family members to vote for more taxes for education in the state? How many of these whiners have or will put on vigorous efforts (or hell, just vote) to restore a semblance of a rational funding situation in California.
You, my undergraduate friends, are in the situation you are in because of the taxpayers of the state of California. They don't want to pay for anything. They've abandoned the great principles of progress and investment that brought about the Golden State's Golden Years. Now we (oh yes, I've been a taxpayer in the State for years) are once again the Nation's bell-whether, leading the way on selfishness and shortsightedness. Leading the way on dissolution of the great social compact. Leading the way on assing up all that was once great about our society. So if you wish to make a difference, stop chanting those stupid protest rhymes. Do something real and serious to address the actual problem here. Get out there and fight for the notion that it is actually a good thing to pay taxes to invest in our common well being. Help Gen X to pull us back from the brink we've been pushed to by those damn Boomers.