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Commentary and Opinion Dec 8, 2013 - 8:29:09 AM

Mollette: American Universities - Taxpayer lottery winners

By Glenn Mollette

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The below opinion is that of the writer and does not represent the opinion and views of Canaiden LLC, its associates and entities.

A 501(c)3 not for profit is normally a charity, church, religious group or community service organization. It could even be Liberty University in Virginia that enrolls over 50,000 students a year online and receives over 450 million dollars each year from the federal government. The money comes from the students who use federal aid to pay for their education. This happens in all states but usually on a smaller scale. The college or university eventually qualifies for a Council on Higher Education Association accreditation. Schools who want the free federal dollars jump through every hoop and dance every step necessary to keep their accreditation.

A CHEA accreditation means mega millions to universities. This accreditation gives the school a federal college identification number that students use when filling out their FAFSA (free application for federal student aid) for free government money. FAFSA lets them know if they are approved to go to the school. Once approved - hooray! The school has won a lottery right from the American taxpayers pocket. The school, over the next four years, may expect to receive as much $40,000, $50,000, $70,000 or more. The school financial aid office must use a formula for those who are approved to apply to FAFSA. A determination is made about how much the family can pay. If the family can pay some then the student will receive less FAFSA.

However, consider how many millions of families that are in poverty in America and you are looking at least one third of our nation that is qualified for free federal money. This means the student will receive a free ride for all four years of college - paid for by you. Students from middle class families who can pay some receive much less and some families make enough to where they do not qualify at all. Again, the middle class and those who work hard to make money in America pay out the most and receive the least amount of FAFSA and usually it's none.

I would rather see our country spending money on college tuition than Afghanistan, Egypt, Libya and Iraq. Some of the best money our country spends is on education.

The problem is that federal tax dollars have become gold mines to American universities. Salaries of professors and those in administration have skyrocketed in recent years while Average America has been taking pay cuts or standing in unemployment lines. Colleges across America have taken a good thing too far. They have been living on Fantasy Island for too long. They build the finest buildings, pay handsome salaries to some professors who only teach three times a week and are mostly paid for by your tax dollars.

University Presidents and trustees must lead the way to cut college costs. Cutting college costs would ease some of the financial burden on this nation. All would benefit including the millions of families who often do not qualify for free federal money. Many of these working families see higher education as becoming almost impossible for their children.

Glenn Mollette is an American columnist read in all fifty states. Contact him at Like his facebook page at
He is the author of American Issues and numerous other books.

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