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ULV is the place to be

By now, the full-time student at the University of La Verne has paid or made arrangements for spring semester’s tuition of $14,125. It is a grim reminder to the student drowning in student loans that a year’s tuition has increased $1,340 for the 2009-10 academic year.

Yet amid the rising costs of a private college education in this awful economic climate, we Leopards have it pretty darn good.

Once you accept that college education debt is the best debt to have, then you can appreciate the perks ULV has to offer.

Class sizes here are still exceptionally small, with a student to faculty ratio of 12 to 1. Not having overcrowded classrooms and being able to get the classes you need makes it easy to complete a bachelor’s degree in four years, as opposed to students at schools like Cal Poly Pomona.

Cal Poly’s Web site states that winter, spring, summer and fall 2010 quarter terms are closed to first-time freshmen and transfers.

This is nothing short of a disappointment for the current senior in high school preparing for his or her future at a Cal State. And for the community college student who has been working hard to make the big move to a four-year, what a discouragement.

But probably most frustrating is being a current Cal State student with a delayed graduation date because of circumstances out of your control. In some cases, students are being forced to take classes they do not need or take time off from school all together.

According to the Los Angeles Times, state funding for Cal States was cut more than half a billion dollars for this fiscal year resulting in class cancellations, furloughs and overly crowded classes throughout the Cal State system.

ULV is not exactly free of financial woes, but in comparison to state-funded institutions, the grass is definitely greener on our side.

Not only are we spared the chaos going on at Cal States, but we also get to enjoy the luxuries of cheap $30 parking for the entire school year, free Wi-Fi throughout most of the campus, decent financial aid packages and health insurance for full-time students.

Students who may or may not have private health insurance can make an appointment at the Student Health Center to see a doctor for virtually anything, whether it is for a common cold or a vaccination. Students also have free access to prescription and over-the-counter medications.

And it is not too shabby that Forbes Magazine has given ULV high marks among other colleges and universities: ULV was ranked 206th in the nation and 18th in California as one of American’s Best Colleges, according to Forbes Magazine’s 2009 list. This puts us ahead of Cornell University, Carnegie Mellon University, Pepperdine University and University of Southern California, to name a few.

So the next time you feel like complaining about how difficult times are, consider what you have and what your friends at Cal States do not. Especially in these rough economic times, it is always good to count your blessings because things could be worse, much worse.

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