UH Students React to Clinton College Expense Relief Plan

University of Houston Senior Sean Liu is stressed.

"Trying to fit into this society, that deems if you don't have a four year degree than you are not going to make it anywhere. The only guarantee is that you are going to be in debt," said Liu.

  It is pressure that builds a bit more with every costly semester.

"We are trying to better ourselves and we're trying so hard in the process and we are only driving ourselves further into debt," said Liu.

On this campus and hundreds like it, Liu has plenty of company. By one estimate, tuition costs have risen 40 percent over the past decade leaving middle and low income students just two options - take on more debt or dropout.

"Absolutely, I've had friends who dropped out because they couldn't afford college. It breaks my heart and I know that they are really struggling, so it is hard," said Helena Ignatovich, a UH student in her third year.

 It is an affordability crisis that's captured the attention of presidential contender Hillary Clinton whose proposing a $350 billion taxpayer investment to lower tuition costs and trim the interest on debilitating school debt.

"No student should have to borrow to pay tuition at a public college or university and everyone who has student debt should be able to finance it at lower rates," said Clinton Monday in Exeter, New Hampshire.

UH student John Baker calls it a good idea, but not one for which he could wait. Two tours in Afghanistan is the price paid for his tuition.

"I see a lot of guys, especially in the military, who would have definitely liked to have done the education part first, but didn't get the opportunity to, so they went into the military and served," said Baker.
But for Liu, cynicism has grown in equal measure with his debt related stress.

"I feel like it's just another politician saying what they need to say to win and get into office," said Liu.

 The $350 billion Clinton proposes to invest would be spread out over 10 years. Clinton says she'd pay for it by reducing tax deductions currently available to America's wealthiest families.