Whenever we hear the words "college student" the first thing that pops through our minds is someone who is broke, probably eating ramen noodles (an inferior good), and juggling between classes and a part-time job so they can pay for their tuition and life expenses. Over the past few decades school tuitions has been increasing gradually. According to ABC News, the rate of school tuition has increased by 3.7% among public and private non-profit higher education institutions. This rate is the highest to be seen among college students over the span of 30 years. As a result, enrollment rates have declined by 5.4% over the past three years, and an average of 60% of undergraduate students end up taking loans for $27,000, however, this ratio also seems to drop. Going to college isn't a luxury, but with such high tuition it is becoming one. Moreover, even after achieving that $40,000 degree, it is not paying off. The journey of finding a job that could possibly pay that debt is a struggle itself, as the graph shows the curve of tuition expenses is exceeding the average income and, it is increasing exponentially over the years. .
The debt is becoming more of a life-sentence to the students and their families. Henceforth, students are turning away from higher education just because they can't afford it. They are going towards technical certificates and two years degree programs, since the opportunity cost is much more trouble-free. Therefore, in the long run, this will increase the blue to white collar employment ratio. The structure of the economy in the US is becoming more of a service sector than production sector due to jobs being outsourced to China and southern Asian countries. A student would consider the opportunity cost for their school, considering all the tuition and fees paid and all that effort to get that degree. At some point it is not worth it. Maybe taking that loan to start a local business would be more efficient.