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We Did The Math: Alternative Uses For Your Tuition Dollars

by Elissa Hill and Anthony Colucci

Rising tuition costs continue to plague students around the nation, but until you’re actually paying off your student loans (*shudders*) it’s difficult to put tuition into real-life terms. So we did the math for you: Here’s how much it really costs you every time you skip that 8 a.m. lecture, and more fun facts about your tuition dollars.

For an in-state student taking 15 credits per semester, missing a three-credit Tuesday/Thursday class costs you about $59.67, or 15 ice cream cones at the Creamery. Missing a three-credit Monday/Wednesday/Friday class costs you ten ice cream cones, or $39.78.

For an out-of-state student taking 15 credits per semester, missing a three-credit Tuesday/Thursday class costs you about $107.94, or 28 ice cream cones at the Creamery. Missing a three-credit Monday/Wednesday/Friday class costs you 19 ice cream cones, or $71.96.

If you’re lactose intolerant, or ice cream’s just not quite your style, here’s another metric most students over 21 can relate to. For the following calculations, assume it’s happy hour.

For an in-state student taking 15 credits per semester, missing a three-credit Tuesday/Thursday class costs you about $59.67, or 13 teas at Café 210 West. Missing a three-credit Monday/Wednesday/Friday class costs you eight teas at Café, or $39.78.

For an out-of-state student taking 15 credits per semester, missing a three-credit Tuesday/Thursday class costs you about $107.94, or 23 teas at Café 210 West. Missing a three-credit Monday/Wednesday/Friday class costs you 16 teas at Café, or $71.96.

With one semester of in-state tuition, you could buy student season football tickets for yourself and 40 of your closest friends — and even have enough left over for a chicken basket. For out-of-staters, finding 73 friends to buy student tickets for might be a challenge, but surely not impossible.

For every credit hour you spend watching Netflix as an in-state student, you could fund your subscription for the next four and a half years. If you hail from out of state, you could use the money you spend on one credit to fund your Netflix and chill night for the next eight years and two months.

Considering taking a semester off and roll the dice with cryptocurrency? The tuition of one five-credit semester for an in-state student could purchase 1.32 bitcoins. An out-of-state student could obtain 2.4 bitcoins. Now, you just need to figure out what you’d actually do with those bitcoins, other than tell people you own #bitcoin and pretend like you know what #blockchain is.

President Eric Barron makes about $818,000 per year after an increase approved by the Board of Trustees last semester. That’s more than 45 in-state students’ full tuition for the year, or tuition from more than 25 out-of-state students.

And finally, what if you put your future up to chance rather than education?

If an in-state student invested four years of tuition into buying Powerball tickets, you could purchase 35,800 tickets. You’d still only have a .00012252 chance of winning. These odds are a little better for out-of-state students, who could spring for 64,764 tickets with four years of tuition. But you’d still only have a .00022164 chance of winning.

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Posts from the all-student staff of Onward State.

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