New Jersey’s Great Cost Shift How Higher Education Cuts Undermine the State’s Future Middle Class
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In today’s economy, a college education is essential for getting a good job and entering the middle class. Yet, despite this reality, college costs are rising beyond the reach of many New Jerseyans. State policy decisions have played a significant role in this rise by shifting costs onto students and families through declining state support. New Jersey’s investment in higher education has decreased considerably over the past two decades, and its financial aid programs, though still some of the country’s most expansive, fail to reach many students with financial need. This report shows that students and their families now pay—or borrow—much more than they can afford to get a higher education, a trend which will have grave consequences for New Jersey’s future economy.