Richmond Magazine Asks College Presidents

September 05, 2011

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Writer Gary Robertson posed 10 questions to the presidents of Hampden-Sydney College, Longwood University, the University of Mary Washington and Virginia Commonwealth University. Here are their emailed answers.

Christopher B. Howard, president of Hampden-Sydney College

With rising college costs far outstripping the rate of inflation and with increasing student debt, many Americans are now questioning the value of a college education. Do you think a college education is still a good value for most people, even if it leaves them in debt?

Unquestionably, a college education - both in terms of future earnings and personal fulfillment - is a good value. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (2010), the median weekly earnings for a four-year college graduate are 66 percent higher than for a high school graduate and 37 percent higher than for the holder of an associate degree.

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