University to host “Access and Affordability” forum


Written by Guethshina Altena/ News Director

Last year, almost 50 percent of University graduates received an average of $19,915 with along with their degree, according to statistics provided by the Financial Aid Office.  

To address the obstacles students face in getting a degree without a high level of indebtedness, Student Media is organizing a forum to address the issues of college access and affordability.

Robert Jaross, the director of Student Media, worked with Cayla Bush, Student Media’s editor in chief, and Erica Santiago, the general manager for The Roar, to create a forum that will provide students with information regarding financial aid and scholarship options.

“The objective [of the forum] is to give students a takeaway on how to decrease their outgoing debt,” said Jaross. “So options on their scholarships, financial aid and filling out the FASFA, thing that will help them in terms of graduating with a lower debt amount.”

Jaross believes that this forum can help students find new ways to save some money in their college expenses. The goal is to help students see the value in lowering their debt while in college, he said.

“Student’s debt is a hot topic because so many students are leaving the University with humongous amounts of debt, so we are hoping to give them some strategies to not be in a hole financially when they graduate.”

The forum will also explain how state-mandated metrics effect student costs.

“It’s not just giving a cheat-sheet for cutting costs that we’re interested in,” said Bush. “We want students to understand how decisions they make, like how many classes they take a semester, will affect costs.”

The forum will feature a panel with University President Mark B. Rosenberg; Director of Office of Scholarships Laura Castillo; Director of Financial Aid Francisco Valines; SGC-MMC President Alian Collazo.

Students will be given the opportunity to ask questions and have a discussion moderated by Raquel Perez, a CARTA professor.

The forum will take place Wednesday, Feb. 8 from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. in GC 140 at MMC and HL 319 at BBC.

Photo courtesy of Flickr

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