Belmont Abbey College, a small private college in Belmont, North Carolina, announced it is cutting tuition by 33%.
If you're a parent with college-age kids, you probably experienced sticker shock the first time you checked out tuition costs. And maybe even a few times after that.
The College Board says that the average yearly cost for a four-year public university for an in-state student is now $8,240. For a private college, it's $28,500 per year.
William Thierfelder, president of Belmont Abbey College, says that most students are so discouraged with what he calls the "sticker price" of higher education that they don't even consider applying to a school they think is beyond their families' means.
So Belmont Abbey is taking a different approach: The college has announced that it is "resetting" its tuition, reducing it by 33% next fall for incoming freshmen and transfer students.
The old sticker price for one year at this small private college near Charlotte, North Carolina was about $27,600. The new price will be $18,500.
Thierfelder told CNN that the college had been working on a tuition reset for about two years, and that he was able to reduce tuition with their adult education program 8 years earlier.
Why is Belmont Abbey cutting tuition? "It seemed a little bit like madness, with costs going up each year, We were raising tuition each year, only to give it back on the financial aid side to help students be able to afford it," Thierfelder told CNN. "It's time to stop the madness."
Thierfelder says that a dozen or more colleges have reduced their tuition, and he thinks more will follow this trend.
"When I tell people we're doing this, they don't say 'that's crazy', they say 'that's great, why isn't everybody doing this?'" said Thierfelder.
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