Local College Reacts To Obama’s Proposal Of Free Tuition

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BENTONVILLE (KFSM) - President Obama says he wants to make community college tuition free for millions of Americans.

However, the proposal has one local community college concerned about how the logistics.

“It certainly sounds like something exciting, and that would benefit all of our students,” said Steven Hinds, spokesperson for Northwest Arkansas Community College. “But, 75% of this program is paid by the federal government and 25% by the state of Arkansas. Well, where does that money come from in the state of Arkansas? Where would the funding come from? What does that mean? What are the requirements to maintain that tuition free status?”

President Obama made the announcement in Tennessee on Friday (Jan. 9.)

The first two years at a community college would be free for students who meet certain requirements.

According to the president, free tuition would be given for the first two years to students. They would need to maintain a 2.5 grade point average, and be enrolled at least half-time to qualify.

Some NWACC students say they wish the program was around for their first two years of schooling.

“It would help [students] a lot,” said Taylor Gentry, a sophomore at NWACC. “You would have so much more free time to do all the things you need to do to get through college. It would be just a really helpful thing to help all the kids get through college.”

Hinds says NWACC knows the president's proposal would benefit lot students. But, he says the plan needs more work.

“We appreciate the fact that president Obama is saying that community colleges play a big role in communities,” Hinds said. “I think that it will allow additional students to come to the community college, who may not attend college at all. We just think it’s a little too early to get students real excited; until we know this is going to happen, and where the funding will come from.”

A Tulsa Community College representative said the school already has a program in place similar to Obama's community college proposal. The college released a statement saying, "We are pleased to see the Tulsa Achieves concept recognized on a national level and copied in other communities."

It is expected the initiative will save students $3,800 each school year.

24 comments

    • James

      I don’t want my tax dollars used for this either. Why don’t the take the money from the Arkansas Scholarship lottery and use that money? I bet the voters would go for that rather than have our taxes raised. They could even cut the salaries of the lottery officials and pay for even more. Just a thought.

  • John Mitchell

    It really is sad that America has become a nation of freeloaders. And stupid one at that. Here we have Barack Obama up to his socialist tricks again. Free college equals votes for 2016 to continue the downward spiral towards bankruptcy. Then once the economy collapses – BAM! – martial law and more government control. Can you say communism?

    • Heath

      John, I certainly agree with you on the fact that it is sad we have became a nation of freeloaders. When he announced this the key phrase to me was “if they earn it”. My problem is that part time and a 2.5 GPA is not earning it, unless it is someone in the workforce holding down a job, maybe supporting a family, etc. (basically, someone who is trying to better their situation while at the same time taking care of their responsibilities). I imagine it would be earning it to hold a 2.5 GPA while working and supporting a family. However, for those right out of high school, that’s a whole new situation. They should be full time and maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and a certain attendance rate, the same as a job. Then I could envision this program as teaching these kids right out of high school accountability and responsibility, which would actually help them when they get out of school and get a job. The problem is that there isn’t many policies on the agenda of President Obama that actually hold people accountable. While I like the idea, I just don’t see the President making these students actually “earn it”. I’m afraid It will be more like a “give it”. If we could unite this with policies that will create jobs, it would be a good combination because of more jobs and better educated workers. However, Washington won’t be able to be efficient enough to accomplish that.

    • Mark

      How about we take some of that defense dept $$ and reroute it towards education? You believe in small govt… Unless it’s something like the defense dept.. That doesn’t count does it?? Right wing extremism at its finest.. You are against a more educated society?? Amazing as usual!!

  • objectivefodder

    Some of us are anxious to get out of this hell hole nation. Europe is better. Education, quality of life and happiness motivate us to get away from the negativity of the spoiled hatred from the ignorant ruling white America. Pessimism runs in the blood of the programmed and conditioned peasantry who refuse to accept betterment. Those of you who are educated, single and mobile should seriously consider relocating because this nation is nothing more than idiocy made up of corporatist and self serving captialist who care not but for themselves. Anyone against education for “all” and who votes conservative Republican and confesses to and prays to a sacrificial half man-half God will ultimately destroy civilization anyway. Like China and Russia, America is next to fall. The billionaires have left the building like Elvis did, only with dignity and grace. The wealthy are laughing at you. There’s free tuition in Germany. Auf Wiedersehen.

    • Heath

      I am college educated and I vote conservative, not always republican, but conservative. The thing is I don’t mind paying for my education because the school provided me a service. You see, I don’t mind paying for goods and services that I get. It’s called earning your own way. Growing up I was taught to work for what I get and make an honest living. I don’t go around with a hand out to get things or money I don’t earn. Europe is better? How is that? Their economy is worse than ours was in the worst part of our recession, not to mention the terrorists running around over there killing people who don’t believe like they do. As far as Germany goes, their greatest achievements are in soccer and producing one of the greatest mass murderers in world history. You claim to be objective, so I will be objective as well. If you dislike it here so much, why don’t you go over there? Otherwise, shut up and try to do something to make our society better. By the way, you talk about America falling like China and Russia because of people who follow a “half man-half God”. For your information, those two countries suppress and persecute anyone who believes in that “half man-half God”. Seems like we should do the opposite to avoid the same fate, don’t you think?

      • objectivefodder

        As many of us know in the higher echelon of both business and education, a major monumental shift in the allocation of public funding for societal goods and services are in the making. Socialism is the answer and we’re moving there quickly, as we should. Those of you nationalist who cry otherwise will not be heard. Some of us have already parlayed our talents in other markets abroad, just to be safe. The corporatist and technocrats are no exception. Those of you of the proletariat are either wise and savvy, or ignorant and inattentive to globalization. A wise person would consider alternative geographical prospects just in case. Yes, Europe is better over-all, as a society. They are indeed happier and more tolerant of all peoples, and less likely to participate in religion. I’ll take a secular society any day over one that believes in fairy tales. Now go back to work and serve your big white boss man. Your days are numbered anyway.

      • Heath

        Well objective, I can’t argue with you because you are correct. I’m not saying that to feed your ego, I’m saying it because I know for a fact that we are not only moving toward globalization quickly, but we will get there, probably sooner rather than later. You are also correct that those like me will not be heard during this transition. The reason I know this is because there is a book, called the Bible, that tells us the exact type of system you are describing will come to fruition during the times we are now living in. To be more specific, it is found in Matthew when Jesus described the end times, and it is also described very vividly in the book of Revelation. The system you long for and can see beginning to emerge is the exact type of system laid out in detail in those books. Amazing that it was predicted almost 2000 years ago, huh? However, it doesn’t mean that I have to embrace it or like it. In fact, for those of us who believe, the Bible also tells us to be in this world, but not of this world. So basically I will continue to live by the values and beliefs I stand for, and I will continue to teach my children to do the same. I will also keep on going to work and serving my “big white boss man”, as you say. I will also continue to help and serve those I encounter on a daily basis until my days are over because I am also called to a life of servant hood and love. Since my days are numbered, as is yours by the way (after all the death rate IS 100%), I figure I might as well continue living the life I have been called to live with joy and gladness.

      • objectivefodder

        Your so-called book was written by Jews, well planned and thought of. It was a directive-all well programmed and conditioned to carry out domination of the world through societal control. It worked. You’ve been played. The Jews created the Christian bible and the Qur’an and you’re too (sadly) ignorant to grasp the reality given. There is no chosen race. Sorry my friend. The globalist and the elites having gathered in the form of a Cabal (from thousands of generations) and have always called the real shots of the world, including Judaism, Catholicism and most recently, Protestantism. Organized religion contributes also in the form of mental slavery and economic oppression. Man’s inability to accept this only furthers many of us banning together to form a progressive sect (globally) in hopes of better quality of life through love and humanism. We know we have to protect each other and the planet. Clearly, those of you who advocate otherwise have demonstrated the opposite. You’re made up of hatred, intolerance, warmongering selfish ne’er–do–well’s who exemplify greed through capitalism and only care for yourselves and your discriminate offspring of thieves and profiteers. You’re vultures. News flash, Capitalism is done. Crony capitalism and elitism is the new wave. We sold out decades ago. Better learn Mandarin. The “book” served its purpose of enslaving you in real time. There’s no salvation for you after your 100% inevitable either. You’re right though, enlightenment and education isn’t for everyone, but those hungry for it certainly progresses the species. Some of us get it. Your days are numbered. Better adapt.

      • Heath

        Wow!!! First, most of the New Testament books, which is what Christians use as the foundation of our belief system, was written by Paul, a non-Jew who persecuted both Christians and Jews before his conversion. Therefore, the foundation of your argument, based on the premise that Jews wrote the Bible, is flawed, therefore, making your entire argument false. Second, even though you know absolutely nothing about me as a person, you find it necessary to call me ignorant, intolerant, selfish, a hater, warmongerer, and a vulture, simply because I do not share the same ideology as you. I would suggest that is very small minded and bigoted on your part. I think anyone reading this thread will know who the intolerant one is.

      • Heath

        Explanation of John: yes he was of Jewish descent, however he sympathized with the Roman government which made him a traitor and looked down upon. It also made him somewhat of an outsider which was not uncommon among Jews who sided with the oppressing Roman government

    • arnold fudpucker

      Since you believe Europe is better why don’t you leave? I’m sure they would welcome more gubbamint dependent libs like yourself.

  • Richard S. Drake

    Well, for those who are critical, they can rest assured that with the Republican Party, “If you like being poorly educated, you can STAY uneducated!” For the rest of us, a more educated population means a nation of folks who won’t just listen to campaign ads and go, “Oh, yeah . . .”
    We won’t just let politicians of either party get by spouting endless cliches . . . and the comments sections on news sites will get much brighter, as well!

    • arnold fudpucker

      Your problem is that you confuse “being educated” with being indoctrinated. Obumma is just proposing another way to buy votes and create mindless sycophants like yourself.

  • Jboozemun

    I miss the bush administration, where taxpayer dollars went to justifiable causes, rather than educate 2.5 gpa studentAmericans.

    1) let’s give tax breaks to the rich. There are a lot of those in arkansas.
    2) how about we invade another country, like Sudan. Yeah, soldiers will die, but they are expendable under bush.
    3) how about defund social security. We don’t need old people anyhow.

  • Get Real

    Amazing how liberals can’t seem to understand that nothing is free, someone is going to pay. They are very free with other’s money, and heaven forbid a student having to actually work to get through college. Instead of cutting defense, how about ending wasteful government welfare programs? To those threatening to leave the country, I say good luck, goodbye, and good riddance. There is no satisfying the entitlement-minded who believe because they exist, they have a right to what others earn.

  • florence

    “You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom.
    What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without
    receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does
    not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not
    have to work because the other half is going to take care of them, and when the other
    half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get
    what they work for, that my dear friend, is about the end of any nation. You cannot
    multiply wealth by dividing it.”

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