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Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,429
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: The cost of college - then & now

[ Edited ]

I remember that my 5-year program at a California university (1977-1982) was $69 per quarter (one of the few schools on the quarter system back then).  My parents found an off campus apartment for me during orientation (the same time Elvis died) and my rent was $100 per month.  (That apartment complex now charges $800-900.)  I could usually buy all my books and supplies for under $100.  Mostly hardcover books.  In those five years, these costs crept up a little, but only a little. 

 

A degree I completed in 2013 (community college) was more expensive and I spent a lot of time trying to find affordable texts online.  I discovered that $100 might get me half a book in most cases.

 

Last year I completed another degree.  Each five-week class was $1500 and my books were all online.  I still have many of my books from my first degree.  Fewer spelling, grammatical and factual errors in them.

 

The thing about college textbooks is this: A new edition will be published and it will be more expensive but sometimes the text is unchanged.  They update some photos and put a new cover on it, but it's the same old book that was $30 cheaper last year.  It's criminal.

 

But then I have to remember my mother telling me about the house her Italian immigrant father bought and how tough it was, during the Depression, to pay that $17 mortgage.

 

Years later, in the early 70s, she married my stepfather but hated his house.  He explained that there was no way he was going to buy a new one and pay the $20K they were asking.  And this was in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

~My philosophy: Dogs are God's most perfect creatures. Angels, here on Earth, who teach us to be better human beings.~
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,033
Registered: ‎03-11-2010

Re: The cost of college - then & now

Hubby paid his way through college, graduate schools... one job after another.  No parent support.  My whole bill was paid by my parents with me helping by working as well, but not to the extent of hubby dearest.  Cannot do that today.  

 

I really wish society would give credit to those who do not want to go to college and want to go into the TRADES.  Some of my finest students are now fixing up my house from plumbers, to electricians to builders etc.  I saw over the years as a teacher the downgrading of these talents... and the attempt to replace them with higher level math and science with no hope of ever getting a job that they wanted to do.  When I got out there was no home economics, or  shop courses.  

Honored Contributor
Posts: 17,816
Registered: ‎04-28-2010

Re: The cost of college - then & now

In those days, many lived at home while attending local colleges/universities.  Ended up very (extremely) successful, btw.   Also, I'm only thinking, that not as many high school students went on to attend college.  Many of them worked summers, married their boyfriends who were perhaps a couple of years older than them, lived at home, saved their money and bought homes almost as soon as they were married, more or less. Let's see................Oh, getting back to college living expenses, four girls could share a rented house for about $25 a month each.   And just about everyone worked during the Summers, so they didn't have to give up their living quarters during the three Summer months.  They just stayed there because the rent was so inexpensive, even in those days.  .......... I'll think about it more, and post later.  I'm sure there are a variety of thoughts and reasons that I haven't yet read. 

'More or less', 'Right or wrong', 'In general', and 'Just thinking out loud ' (as usual).
Honored Contributor
Posts: 30,429
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: The cost of college - then & now

[ Edited ]

@ROMARY wrote:

In those days, many lived at home while attending local colleges/universities.  Ended up very (extremely) successful, btw.   Also, I'm only thinking, that not as many high school students went on to attend college.  Many of them worked summers, married their boyfriends who were perhaps a couple of years older than them, lived at home, saved their money and bought homes almost as soon as they were married, more or less. Let's see................Oh, getting back to college living expenses, four girls could share a rented house for about $25 a month each.   And just about everyone worked during the Summers, so they didn't have to give up their living quarters during the three Summer months.  They just stayed there because the rent was so inexpensive, even in those days.  .......... I'll think about it more, and post later.  I'm sure there are a variety of thoughts and reasons that I haven't yet read. 


That's true!  I stayed in my college apartment and drove home to visit on occasion.  The town was deserted and summer temperatures were 66-70 degrees -- oh, how I miss that!

~My philosophy: Dogs are God's most perfect creatures. Angels, here on Earth, who teach us to be better human beings.~
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,622
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: The cost of college - then & now

Paid my way through college working a full time job and going to school at night and on weekends. Honestly don't remember the total cost. Looking back, don't know how I did it because basically no social life during this time. On the other hand, best investment I ever made in myself because I am now very comfortably retired.