Economic Downturn Blamed for Students Delaying College

The economic crisis is changing the plans of many prospective college students who are now delaying plans for higher education or setting their sights on less prestigious colleges, according to a new study released Monday of over 2,500 high school students nationwide.

Nearly half of the students surveyed said they were more concerned than ever about affording any college at all, according to MeritAid.com, a new, free online service that provides data on colleges and scholarships nationwide.

Other findings include:

  • 57 percent of surveyed students said they are now considering a less prestigious college because of affordability
  • 16 percent said they are putting their college search on hold because they think their families cannot afford to pay tuition
  • 85 percent said they have spent increased time searching for scholarship money to help pay for tuition and just over half said they were depending on financial aid
  • 64 percent said they are very concerned about finding a job after college

College affordability has become a main factor in choosing a college. But Chris Long, COO and president of MeritAid.com, says to prospective college students: “Even if you are changing your college plans because of current conditions, know that there is a college out there that is right for you and that can fit into your budget.”

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