The sad truth about being an art student
By: JASON WATERS
Getting everything together financially and making sure that I can attend the college that I would like is a stressful and often disappointing taste of the tumults of adult life. According to collegeboard.org, the average tuition for a public out-of-state school in 2015 and 2016 was $23,893. This price jumps to $32,405 for private institutions.
As an art student looking at colleges specifically targeted towards computer animation and game design, my ideal schools each have costs of over $50,000 per year. Because of this I am attending community college; however, with financial aid never getting it quite right with my schedule and my never knowing what I should do to correct it, I really am not sure where I will be in six-months time.
Going to school and getting my life together should ideally be less taxing on me emotionally and there are things that can be done to fix this.
First of all, colleges are overpriced. Certain schools that are in high demand, such as the art schools I am interested in, have no incentive to lower their tuition costs. Students are clambering to grab a spot in their program and the school can charge whatever they please and make a killing.
Second, the advising system at Meramec has screwed me over. There is poor communication between the different departments (Academic Advising, ACCESS, and Financial Aid). So much so that I was incorrectly advised on what classes I should be taking and was dropped from financial aid. Third, as a byproduct of being in the incorrect classes I am not where I should be academically. If I wanted to transfer anywhere it would be without my associates and I would possibly have to be in school for a longer period of time, defeating the purpose of going to Meramec.
In Clark Hall, all the departments are separate. Because of this, it is difficult to coordinate myself between Advising, Financial Aid, and the ACCESS office. I often find myself having to deliver instructions from one department to the next. This is especially frustrating because sometimes I do not even know why I need to ask what I need to ask and my questions are often met with confusion.
This is the result of poor communication between departments and a disparagingly faulty setup. It would be easier if the departments were conjoined or have at least some kind of routine contact. I understand not being able to move the departments for financial reasons but if there was a worker in each department that specialized in the others it would ease communication.
There should be more regulations on the costs of college. Because in-demand colleges can charge however much they want, it is exactly what they do.
I understand the business model but as a student I am not a huge fan.
The types of restrictions in place could be state level but more importantly they should take into account the demographic of students who apply, as well the expenses of the college itself. It should be made affordable while still supporting and maintaining the school’s standards.