alltogetherfool via flickr Creative Commons

If you don’t have the scratch to buy 10 million stamps, maybe selling seats in college courses is an easier way to make a buck … Joel Eastwood of the Toronto Star, wrote about savvy students at the University of Toronto registering for classes and then selling those spots to students who need that particular course but can’t get in through the normal registration process.

401(k)_2013 via flickr Creative Commons

President Obama has put colleges on notice – if tuition does not stop rising, federal financing will drop. And he’s laid out proposals addressing both affordability and accountability. Some say this attention is long overdue, but others warn of unintended consequences. We’ll talk with leaders in New Hampshire higher-education about these issues in the state.


Saint Huck via flickr Creative Commons

The quagmire that is student loan debt has finally surpassed credit card debt in America. We’ve heard a lot about what this level of debt means to college graduates, drop-outs and families but now we’re going to dig a little deeper into the “loan” part. What a student signs up for looks, feels and sounds like a loan…but doesn’t fine-print like a loan. Decisions made by congress in recent decades have rendered traditional loan safeguards such as bankruptcy filing, inaccessible to borrowers. David Dayen is a freelance writer and contributor to salon, where we found his article, “Your Student Loan Isn’t Really a Loan.”

ben.chaney.archive via flickr Creative Commons

In his state of the union address in February, President Obama asked for legislative help in making higher education more accessible to American students.

“So tonight, I ask Congress to change the Higher Education Act so that affordability and value are included in determining which colleges receive certain types of federal aid. And tomorrow, my administration will release a new “College Scorecard” that parents and students can use to compare schools based on a simple criteria -- where you can get the most bang for your educational buck.”

The President’s calls for reform come at a time when an estimated 40 million Americans want to go further with their education. Beyond the rhetoric, Obama’s 2013 budget outlined plans to overcome common barriers to getting a degree, including access, affordability, and completion. An initiative from Southern New Hampshire University is looking to change that.

Sheryl Rich-Kern, NHPR

As college costs rise around the country, some small private colleges are finding a new way to attract students—by offering financial incentives.  Some are offering discounts. Others are freezing tuition.  But New England College in Henniker has come up with its own plan to attract a wider range of students.

Beginning this May, it’s offering a year-round academic calendar, allowing students to save money by graduating in three years instead of four.

angelamaphone via flickr Creative Commons

In his first term, President Obama boosted Pell grants and reformed federal financial aid in hopes of increasing college access for low-income students.  Despite these efforts, there is another problem preventing the less privileged from getting an education – a disconnect between poor families, and the arcane bureaucracy surrounding the admissions process.

Sarah Carr is author of the new book Hope Against Hope: Three Schools, One City, and the Struggle to Educate America’s Children.”  An excerpt from that book featured in The Atlantic tells the story of one New Orleans high school’s efforts to bridge the admissions process gap.

<a href="">CollegeDegrees360</a> / Flickr

In this episode, Stephen Dubner breaks down the costs and benefits of going to college, especially during an economy that's leaving a lot of people un- and underemployed. The data say that college graduates make a lot more money in the long run and enjoy a host of other benefits as well. But does that justify the time and money? We'll hear from economists David Card, Betsey Stevenson, and Justin Wolfers, as well as former Bush advisor Karl Rove, who made it to the White House without a college degree.


The New Hampshire Department of Education says that in the past decade there has been a 6 percent increase in the number of high school graduates continuing on to college, but also a five percent increase in the number of high schoolers leaving the state for college.

Sheryl Rich-Kern

With the high costs of tuition, many students with an associate’s degree can’t afford to go on for their bachelor’s.  So in 2011, when one non-profit college in Salem began offering students their third year of college free, some considered the deal a godsend.

kcadams via Flickr/Creative Commons

Recruitment from other countries is a rising trend in Higher Education as a way to diversify campuses and bring in money to financially strapped institutions.  It’s also become a big business, raising questions about the way in which students are brought in.  We take a look at this practice and how it’s evolving here in the Granite State.


Fewer than 5 percent of Americans had completed college when historian James Truslow Adams first coined the term "American dream" in 1931.

Today, many consider higher education the gateway to a better, richer and fuller life. But for many kids growing up in poverty, college might as well be Mars, and the American dream a myth.

Photo be Clark Gregor, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

An increasingly common anxiety for freshly-minted undergraduates is finding a job in their field with a decent enough salary to pay off their student loans. For those with new advanced degrees, the stakes are even higher...  2008 figures from The Center for College Affordability and Productivity estimate that 16% of those qualified to be college professors, lawyers, and doctors are working jobs at the high school graduate level. Helping wayward professionals put their highly-trained brains to work, is Jon F.

CHARLES WHEELAN, professor at Dartmouth College and the University of Chicago and is author of 10 ½ Things No Commencement Speaker Has Ever Said and Naked Economics, veered off the motivational script when addressing the 2011 class at Dartmouth, telling the graduates “your worst days lie ahead.”

Wheelan on Talk of the Nation

photo by Tulane Public Relations via Flickr

By some estimates, U.S. college debt has hit a staggering one trillion dollars.  And New Hampshire students are first in the nation when it comes to the average debt burden. Some blame colleges and universities for hiking tuition. Others blame states for steep funding cuts.  Meanwhile, many say our entire higher education system needs a serious financial overhaul.



Hundreds of thousands of veterans have returned from Iraq and Afghanistan in recent years, eager to get an education under the new post-Sept. 11 GI Bill.

Many vets looking for a school find they are inundated by sales pitches from institutions hungry for their government benefits. Now, lawmakers are looking for ways to protect vets without narrowing their education choices.

(Photo by Runs with Scissors via Flickr Creative Commons)

The average college graduate today will walk away tens of thousands in debt, fewer job opportunities and lower relative wages than previous generations.  While some students increase their post-college chances by majoring in trending fields like science and engineering – others follow less practical paths in the study of  philosophy, religion…and cartooning.  Yup, cartooning.  

Fast Company’s annual list of the world’s 50 Most Innovative Companies included many of the usual suspects: Apple, Facebook and Google all made the list.

<a href="" target="blank">redjar</a> via Flickr/Creative Commons

Officials at Dartmouth College say they’re taking new steps to deal with hazing on campus, especially in fraternities. That issue turned into a campus-wide controversy earlier this year, after Dartmouth senior Andrew Lohse published a piece in the student newspaper describing what he called “dehumanizing” hazing rituals in his fraternity, Sigma Alpha Epsilon.

<a href="" target="blank">jimmywayne</a> via Flickr/Creative Commons

The phrase “first in the nation” is the shorthand we use for talking about the New Hampshire presidential primary coming before any other.

New Hampshire is first among states in other ways, too. Some are good – like having the lowest rate of child poverty among states. Some are not so good – like having the highest student debt load in America.