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U.S. Media: Rising Number of College Dropouts in the U.S.

According to a report by the Consumer News and Business Channel website on April 3, the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center in the U.S. has found that although the trend of declining college admissions has stabilized this year, the number of students dropping out after enrollment continues to rise.

Additionally, a separate report by the education loan organization Sallie Mae reveals that about 26% of undergraduate students across the U.S. are seriously considering dropping out or facing the risk of expulsion.

The report discovered that students who are the first in their family to attend college are more likely to consider dropping out at some point. This tendency is also seen among minority groups and low-income students, who may also be occupied with work.

Rick Castellano, a spokesperson for Sallie Mae, stated, “We need to strengthen support for early college planning, especially for first-generation college students or those from under-served communities.”

Among students contemplating a break from their studies, the majority cited financial concerns. Sallie Mae found other reasons include a loss of motivation for studying or changes in life due to mental health issues.

Experts indicate that American higher education is under overall pressure. The rising cost of college and the stress of student loan debt are leading more students to question the return on investment of a college education.

Meanwhile, the cost of college in the U.S. is becoming increasingly expensive. For the 2023 to 2024 academic year, the average cost of tuition, fees, and room and board at four-year private colleges was $56,190. According to the College Board, which tracks college costs and student aid trends, this figure was $24,030 at four-year public colleges for in-state students.

Sallie Mae’s survey found that half of the students potentially dropping out indicated they were struggling to afford tuition and other related expenses, such as textbooks, accommodation, and food.