Mears: What college students should know before voting
Published: Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, October 24, 2012 21:10
The race to the oval office is in full effect with the election just a little less than two weeks away. With everyone campaigning for their presidential candidate choice, it is easy to get confused as to what the candidates stand for and what their stances are on the important subjects. So before heading to the ballot box or sending in your vote, take a second to take a look at the candidates’ stances on issues that are important to you; don’t go vote blindly.
One issue that seems to be on every college student’s mind is which candidate will help grant more financial aid without messing up the financial aid system.
According to the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, Mitt Romney plans to “… refocus the Pell grant dollars on the students that need them the most and place the program on a responsible long- term path that avoids future funding cliffs and last minute funding patches.” Romney hopes to award the Pell grant to those students who are unable to come to college without financial aid instead of offering it to a wide variety of students who have other options to pay for their education.
President Barack Obama’s stance on this subject is a complete one-eighty from Romney’s. Whereas Romney would like to refocus the Pell grant and redefine who it is awarded to, Obama would like to increase the amount of Pell grant spending and more money to students to encourage them to continue on with post high school educations.
One subject that both candidates can agree on is that students are getting too deep into debt trying to pay for college. Obama’s efforts to provide students loan repayment relief include expanded Income-Based Repayment and loan forgiveness. However, Romney feels as though this is helping to treat the issue yet it still ignores the actual cause of student debt. Romney instead wants to tackle this issue by bringing back private lenders into the student loan program, to ensure that students are clearly informed about the loan, how it works and what they will have to pay back.
While each candidate offers a different plan for our financial aid and student debt, it is up to the voters to decide who will win and how the subject will be handled. Instead of voting for a candidate simply because of what you see on television in campaign ads or because of the color of their skin, you should read up, study up and educate yourself on what the candidates’ stances are on subjects and issues that are important to you. Don’t vote blindly.