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Letter to the Editor: Virginia Universities Should Accept More In-State Students

A McLean resident sounds off on Virginia students being accepted into Virginia colleges and universities.

Dear Editor:

It’s January and with January brings the most common concern of high school seniors, that’s college acceptance! Are you in?  Are you out? Where are you going? How will we pay? This is all high school seniors are thinking about right now, as I was right there with them last year applying to Virginia colleges. With many of my high school classmates having their eyes set on William & Mary as their first choice, I did a little research and found out how fortunate I was to have gotten into William & Mary. William & Mary provides 32 percent of our college spots to out of state students. That makes it very difficult for many of our best and brightest Virginia students, including my classmates, to get in. 

That is why I was pleased to hear Delegate Comstock discuss her bill for more in state college spots when I attended the McLean Community Association Town hall last week.  This bill will increase the in-state slots guaranteed for Virginia’s students to 75 percent -- a reasonable and a modest goal.  This increase will allow more qualified Virginia students to attend Virginia’s schools and will provide these students and their parents with more reasonable tuition bills than they would face at a private college.  I appreciate the work Delegate Comstock has done to get us more in state college spots at Virginia colleges and universities and I hope all of our local Delegates and Senators will join her and do the right thing for Virginia students and families.

Kyle McCauley, McLean, Va.

Morgan January 08, 2013 at 03:58 PM
Delegate Comstock's legislation is gratuitous and misdirected. She proposes to require a 75% admission requirement, while her buddies like Attorney General Cuccinelli continue to demand total control over VIrginia higher education ... HOWEVER, the Commonwealth of Virginia only contributes about eight percent (8%) to the budget of Virginia's institutions of higher learning. This is just another example of Comstock's push for headlines with unfunded and unrealistic 'fluff.'
Gina T Ryan January 08, 2013 at 04:46 PM
I too appreciate what Delegate Comstock is proposing. It is appropriate and timely that our taxes go to support our kids right here at home. With so many wonderful in-state schools in our state, I am very pleased that Delegate Comstock is opening more of those doors for Virginia's students.
Attie January 08, 2013 at 07:00 PM
I agree with Delegate Comstock. Our tax dollars should be going to student from Virginia. Virginia is fortunate to have amazing in-state schools. Increasing the percentage of in-state students spots in Virginia schools will help students like me, and all of my classmates.
Sandra James January 08, 2013 at 07:01 PM
As a graduate of a Virginia college, I appreciate Delegate Comstock's work on this legislation. I am looking forward to following the bill during session.
J Anderson January 08, 2013 at 07:12 PM
What do other states do ? What is the acceptance rate of all the other VA state schools for non-residents? How do those 32% kids out side VA compare to the 68% admitted (which to me is pretty high) and to those who might be admitted if it's 75%? What is given up in terms of tuition for those non VA kids and what does that mean to the Universities? How many kids from VA are denied admission to W&M and where do they live? A college education is more than what you get in a lecture....it's also mixing with other from other walks of life, who grew up differently (from the wilds of Alaska to the urban NYC)..... Where do the W&M graduates end up? Do they stay in VA or leave? Both non-residents and residents kids? Fair questions to be asked I think....
Kim G January 08, 2013 at 08:12 PM
As a recently accepted student to Virginia Tech’s engineering program, I appreciate Delegate Comstock’s support of higher education for Virginia’s students. I understand how difficult it can be to get into such competitive colleges as we have here in Virginia, and Comstock’s proposal will allow more Virginia students to attend these colleges. I am thankful for Delegate Comstock’s consideration of the citizens of Virginia and encourage all state legislators to join her.
CD January 08, 2013 at 09:47 PM
Lately I have seen many articles about the Chinese Students coming in record numbers to the US to go to college because they will pay full price. I have heard from a college student who goes to WVU who says he has seen in the last few years there more international students mostly chinese than ever before. When you hear this you think we should make sure our students get first pick over an non-Virginia or non-US student. I also just recently heard a report that they are hiring Chinese translators at the local Universities to help translate for the Chinese students. I support this bill we have to protect our children. http://www.cnn.com/2012/11/25/world/asia/china-ivy-league-admission/index.html http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/campus-overload/post/chinese-students-enroll-in-record-numbers-at-us-colleges/2011/11/14/gIQAyYlKLN_blog.html
John Farrell January 08, 2013 at 10:27 PM
Carolina public universities limit out of state to 18%. 2 Va. public schools have huge out-of-state populations to collect the higher tuition to overpay a bloated administrative bureaucracy. Limiting UVA & W&M to 25%, big whoop. This bill will do nothing because the UVA cabal that controls the General Assembly won't let it out of committee. Will it even get a hearing? Of greater consequence to the graduating seniors of the 34th District, and their parents, is the abysmal 4 year graduation rates at the other 10 Va public colleges. For the vast majority of Fairfax seniors who don't win the "Wllie Wonka" golden ticket into UVA, W&M, JMU or UMW, they and their parents can look forward to paying 6 years of tuition for a 4 year degree. What's Transvaginal Barb doing about that? Nothing! Based on their recent reports to the US Department of Education, here are the 4 year graduation rates for full time students at: Old Dominion 23% - half of the kids at ODU come from Fairfax! 3 out of the 4 ODU kids will pay 5 or more years tuition for a 4 year degree. Virginia Commonwealth 25% - half the kids at VCU come from Fairfax! Christopher Newport 39% - half the kids at CNU come from Fairfax! George Mason 39% Va public universities are a racket holding out the false promise of a BA degree, except for the 1% who win the lottery to the mighty 4. 100,000 new degrees in the next decade, "Bob for Jobs"?!
Andrew W. Barbin January 17, 2013 at 07:03 PM
I was an out of state (Ohio) early admissions student at Richmond. At the time out of state students were a smaller percentage than you sight as the target at W&M. Reasonable minds can differ on goals. Quotas of any kind are anathema to me; however, I do believe that an excessively parochial student body has significant draw backs. We live in a national and international interdependent world, there is real value to diversity so long as merit is not punished in the process. Please note that many top students, who could go anywhere, choose to venture out of their region for the experience of a different perspective. It was the reason I went. An alternate solution would be to add negotiated in state rates for Virginia students in other states on an exchange program basis. Just sayin...

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