OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Educations Global Problem

The price of higher education is a problem in America. For me (an International Student) and my Family it is a big problem.

Photo of Sizwe Gamedze
2 3

Written by

I am an International student that has been struggling through the high prices of higher education. I am a dependent junior studying business management. I am studying at a school I love, Oral Roberts University. I have one year left and I want to complete my MBA.  I feel for my parents that want to give me a better future and will sacrifice to get me there.

My parents are pastors in South Africa and the exchange rate is 14 RSA to 1 USD.  It has been very hard on my family because the tuition per year is 11,000 dollar’s even with the scholarships. My parents have 5 children and I am the second born. All they can do is try hang in there. They are taking a lot of loans and it is strenuous financially every year. I it is a miracle every semester I can only pray to make it to the end.

I am very grateful that I have come this far and I have parents that will help me finish. However, the strain on them is so great I hope it can be reduced. The tuition is 14 times more for international students from South Africa

What is a provocation or insight that might inspire others during this challenge?

Know that God will make a way, and family is the best support one can have. Keep on going and never give up.

Attachments (1)


Join the conversation:

Photo of Ummay Hani Islam

Hi Sizwe. It is true that very few international students, by their own or by family, can bear their educational expenses. Every year the tuition fees are raising higher. My flat owner is a Chinese woman and she said that she came to Australia 15 years ago and completed her higher education. I remembered her saying that tuition fees were less than recent tuition fees which she found really problematic for foreign students. Even while chatting with a girl who is from Korea shared me her recent experience of paying higher tuition fees for her masters program. This is really bad. According to the HSBC bank research report, which was a PRESS RELEASE with the heading "USA among World's Top Three Most Expensive Destinations for International Students", the following data came up: "in the year 2013, surprisingly, it found that Germany scored lowest for international students with combined annual tuition and living costs of just US$6,285. Australia was the most expensive destination coming in at US$38,515. One of the main factors behind this was a notable strengthening of the Australian Dollar against the U.S. and other currencies. The U.K. placed third in the study at a little over US$30,000." Within 2 years, Australian tuition fees in university raised so much that annual fees (2 semesters fees per year for postgraduate international students) is quite similar to the total annual cost of international students of 2013. How can I compare? Because, I am paying that amount of money for my higher studies in Australia. No doubt that God will make a way. But it is the authorities who have to act in a right way so that we can study to learn rather than be a "pressure cooker" to cook our tension of study, tuition fees, jobs and living cost in mental pressure.

Photo of Sizwe Gamedze

Ummay Hani Islam 
Hey Ummay. It is a global problem that Higher education is getting too expensive. In South Africa there was a huge strike from students this year, and they boycotted classes, became violent, and did not budge. The fees was brought down but this is going to be a reoccurring problem until we fix it. Now that it is becoming the same price the way to compare is the quality of education. Schools are now going to have to figure out a way to get more students because the more students the more money.

The reality is Colleges are closing and are in debt. It is going to cost both schools and students if we do not fix this problem.

It is a big price right now to be in school mentally, emotionally, and financially. However, the problem is the price financially is becoming a burden far beyond the benefits . Lets Fix This Thing !!