...especially the over-priced liberal arts ones
back in the day college was free and colleges depended on the good will of alumni to continue their efforts
be nice if it were like that again
Rear Admiral Lower Half
Pennypinch and I went to an "over-priced liberal arts one" . . . and I did development work for the school - while it was certainly expensive >$30,000 a year, alums and endowment DID pay a VERY significant percentage of our educations since it cost our school >$50,000 a year to educate us.
Colleges DO still rely on the good will of alumni to continue their efforts - but there are VERY few schools that have more than 50% alumni participation in annual fund drives. In fact, of liberal arts colleges, the number is about 20 MAYBE - of major universities - I don't know of any. (Not even Harvard, which during it's recent capital campaign was bringing in about $1 million a day)
Education is EXTREMELY expensive to provide - and while most schools could probably do a better job of cost controls (As could most non-profits in general), they do do a decent job. BTW, I think your idea of colleges being "free" back in the day is a bit off - public schools maybe . . . but private . . . never (However, they WERE subsidized as they are now) . . . even public schools, I have to wonder about . . . my mom went to IU, and I know she had to pay for that. Maybe you meant further back in the day.
I always thought...
...there was an excess of administration at the institution I attended in socal
plus the food service sucked for what they were charging
I have no idea what age you are talking about, when college was "free". It still is effectively free to those people that truly can't afford it. Granted, college is an almost prohibitive investment for lots of people.
As for colleges living off alumni contributions, I assume you know what happened to a number of colleges in the seventies; many almost had to close their doors because alumni just stopped giving.
Are you suggesting the solution to "overpriced liberal arts" colleges are forced alumni contributions?
And as for your idea of forgiving student loans after 13 years....I kind of like it, actually. Well, the intent, not the method. The percentage of people who go on to lead felony free lives is astronomical, so far as I know. That plan would drive tuition and the interest rate sky high. You want to talk about prohibitive cost...there's your driver right there.
It would also have a pretty considerable effect on investments. Colleges and universities are very serious institutional investors.