As a University student I find it ever more challenging to be able to afford to complete a University Degree. Costs are through the roof; tuition, housing, books and just about everything associated with getting a post secondary degree eduction. Luckily for me I have the assistance of my parents to help me pay for major costs but I don’t want to have to rely on them and don’t believe I should forced too. My parents were able to pay their way through school with little to no debt and I feel like its something that I should be able to do too. The problem for me is that its simply not possible anymore without taking a couple years off and saving every penny. Tuition costs are rising way beyond the rate of inflation and are either pushing people way deeper into debt or making a university degree out of the question. I go to Lakehead University and am currently in Criminology. I am looking at either A) continuing on to do a Masters; B) Looking to law school or C) Turning to the Canadian Military to serve as a Military Police Officer. Lakehead University doesn’t offer my program in Thunder Bay so I came to the Orillia campus. This adds an additional housing cost to my expenses along with having to move over 1,000 km away from home. I understand that it costs money to run a University and in order to expand/offer the best education possible you have to pay for these things but what I don’t understand is how it rises so substantially. Tuition increases have been allowed to increase at 5% annually or 8% annually for graduate/doctoral students for the last 7 years. That means that tuition has potentially jumped 35-56%; all this while inflation has only increased at roughly 2.5% since 2002 and even less since 2008. If that disparity isn’t a big WTF then I truly don’t know what is. Careers that we are desperate for like engineers, doctors, nurses, and more all of which require years of university and yet we drop and extra 56% on them? It truly seems counter productive that we are in such desperate for these professions and yet we make them impossible to attain without overburdening debt. Tuition in Ontario is on average $7,180 which is the highest across Canada and almost 3 times the cost of attaining a university education in Quebec or Newfoundland. Why is it that the largest province in Canada with the largest population cannot afford to provide this crucial education at a reasonable rate. Its time to change the way our universities run in order to make them the top of the line but also easily accessible to the average person. We need to stop pumping out hundreds of thousands of students with little to no opportunity for employment after school and focus those resources elsewhere. As much as the teachers will hate me, teaching is a profession with too many job candidates and not enough work. Reducing the spaces and focusing those teachers/dollars in field like computers/engineering would benefit the community and the education dollar. As a student I feel this is one of the conversations we need to have in order to avoid costs continuing to go through the roof. Students can’t afford to take on 30-40G in debt only to enter into low paying jobs. Universities cant continue to pump out thousands of students with no job in sight. We need to reform the way our system works but its going to take major political gut to do it. Continuing on a dead end road is worse then biting the bullet and changing paths.