Cartoon’s mislaid message

I believe that The Hatchet’s political cartoon (Feb. 22, p. 4) misrepresented the 4.5 percent tuition increase for next year.

The tuition increase is actually a reasonable and moderate increase. This year, the University increased continuing undergraduate tuition by 4.6 percent, making next year’s difference a decrease of a tenth of a percent. In addition, according to the College Board’s Trends in College Pricing 1999, this year’s average tuition increase for four-year private colleges and universities is 4.6 percent. It is also important to note that relative to most of the other universities in our market, GW is under-endowed.

The Hatchet should focus its attention on where tuition money is spent rather than on the relatively moderate tuition increase. According to the Student Budgetary Priorities Report, students want the level of investment in academics and other areas to improve. They do not find fault with the price of tuition as much as the discrepancy between the price and the quality of their education.

Finally, I believe that The Hatchet should remember that GW President Stephen Joel Trachtenberg is a talented administrator who has made a deep commitment to this University and who has been a leading force in GW’s growth during his tenure. People are entitled to express their opinions on Trachtenberg’s policies, but they should remember that he is a human being who deeply cares about this University.

Although no one likes a tuition increase, it is an unfortunate reality of today’s college environment. The Hatchet should turn its attention away from the reasonable increase and to where the tuition money is spent.

-Joshua J. Friedman
SA Tuition Action Director

Editor’s Note: The Hatchet’s editorial cartoons do not necessarily represent the views of editorial staff.

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