Letters to the Editor

Asleep at the wheel

Another increase to Penn State’s sky-high tuition. The most expensive non-private university in the nation.

And the PSU board? PSU administration?

Asleep at the wheel.

Over the past 15 years, inflation drove educational costs up by 50 percent.

But PSU has increased tuition rates by 200 percent.

Why? The reasons are as obvious — and infuriating — as they are indefensible.

Fifteen years ago, every dollar of tuition was used to pay for educational and instructional costs.

Today, nearly one-third of every dollar of tuition is funneled off to pay for expenses completely unrelated to education and instruction of students — primarily to fund bloated non-educational bureaucracy and unchecked capital spending.

The ratio of non-educational, non-research bureaucrats has more than doubled relative to the number of professionals actually performing the educational and research missions of the university.

But PSU leaders only point the finger at Harrisburg — even though the state appropriation is a much smaller factor in the rising costs.

Today, Penn State — annually — charges over $400,000,000 more in tuition than it spends on educating and instructing students.

PSU could reduce tuition by 25 percent — today — even without any increase to the state appropriation, if they simply stopped diverting funds from the students to finance their own administrative largess.

And each year the stifling, wasteful bureaucracy only grows worse.

And PSU leadership?

They simply don’t care. And honesty doesn’t serve their self-interests.

So ... they’ll form a bureaucratic committee to “study the issue.” The irony is staggering.

Barry Fenchak, State College

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