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The Quintessential College Experience, Without The Big Bills

Alejandra Gonzalez browses in the bookstore at the University of Maryland in College Park, Md.
Elissa Nadworny
/
NPR

Going to college today is a very different experience than it once was. The cost has soared, and the great recession cut into many of the assets that were supposed to pay for it. This week All Things Considered is talking with young people — and in some cases their parents — about the value of school and about their choice of what kind of college to attend.

Four years ago, members of the high school class of 2012 were deciding where and how to go to college. Several factors weighed heavily: cost, the student experience, prestige and the prospect of a job after graduation.

Nearly 40 percent of their classmates nationwide who pursued a higher education chose a four-year state college or university, like the University of Maryland.

At the College Park campus — just outside Washington, D.C. there are more than 27,000 undergraduates. We chatted with three students finishing up their degrees.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Prior to his retirement, Robert Siegel was the senior host of NPR's award-winning evening newsmagazine All Things Considered. With 40 years of experience working in radio news, Siegel hosted the country's most-listened-to, afternoon-drive-time news radio program and reported on stories and happenings all over the globe, and reported from a variety of locations across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia. He signed off in his final broadcast of All Things Considered on January 5, 2018.
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