Germany Offers Free College Education to American Students

Get your passports out! Why? You can now earn a complete college education in Germany now for free! This week, Lower Saxony, the final German state that was charging tuition announced that they too are joining the no tuition club which will enable all American and international students to attend all German universities.

Prior to the complete removal of all tuition fees, Germany allowed students to attend semesters for fees that were more than reasonable, especially when comparing them to tuition rates in the U.S… German students also benefited from bonuses like food, clothing and event discounts with transportation provided for little to no cost. This again is a far cry from what students in the states are receiving with many having to decide between education costs and food.

Dorothee Stapelfeldt, a Hamburg senator, explained that charging tuition fees is “unjust.” She went on to say that “They discourage young people who do not have a traditional academic family background from taking up study. It is a core task of politics to ensure that young women and men can study with a high quality standard free of charge in Germany.”

The latest move by German universities is actually a throwback to the days when tuition was free before that reign ended in 2006. As can be imagined, this garnered the German states quite a bit of criticism that encouraged a reversal of the policy and lead to the final state closing the tuition door today.

This begs the question of why U.S. politicians don’t place the same high value on education and act accordingly to support students? Colleges and universities are still grappling with the decrease in federal funding that was caused by the 2008 recession. Currently, the states are spending 23% less on each student than they were prior to the recession, according to a report by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

State support is on the decline for public universities and has been steadily down trending for roughly a quarter of a century without much lower to go. The interactive tool that is available on The Chronicle of Higher Education website will enable you to see how all of this has impacted many individual schools.

Student debt may be on the decline, but tuition is still very expensive and some students just can’t afford to take the risk of earning a degree and not getting a job upon graduation. This reason among many others makes a free college education sound pretty perfect.

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