Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Menu of Life, College Edition

Bear with me. This is college-related.

I've never been good at spending on myself, or on discretionary activities in general. I think about the money too much. And that means when I go out to dinner (other than local, casual places), I spend a lot of time wondering what makes a small portion of cod, however tasty and prettily presented, worth $32.

I sound so provincial that I blush in embarrassment. But now I will go a step further and say something even crazier, something that belies my feminist tendencies. Sometimes I wish for the very old days, when the lady's menu had no prices on it. Then I would select my dinner based on what sounded good, and how hungry I was, or what I was curious about, rather than what it cost.

In fact, I wish colleges could be selected that way. Students would search for colleges offering the best fit, the most simpatico campus, the strongest professors in a given field, and apply to those schools, regardless of cost. The final decision about which college to attend might well be influenced by money, but it would not be the overriding factor.

And that is the way a number of the Mom's College Cram Course panelists are approaching college selection. Starting tomorrow, and then continuing now and again over the next few weeks, we'll look at specific strategies panelists have in mind; whether there is any conscious limiting of choices due to cost; and whether teens are worried about cost.

No comments:

Post a Comment