“I think this is a land of opportunity for every single person, every single citizen of this great nation. And I want to make sure that we keep America a place of opportunity, where everyone has a fair shot. They get as much education as they can afford and with their time they’re able to get and if they have a willingness to work hard and the right values, they ought to be able to provide for their family and have a shot of realizing their dreams.”
With college cost being offset by raising prices for the average student to compensate for federal and state funding cuts the real explanation is that no one can “afford” college. It’s why kids get student loans: they can’t afford it. Not when they step on to campus and now increasingly even after they leave college (employed or not) as graduates: they cannot afford it.
For most Americans a higher education, an education you need to afford, is not attainable without undergoing significant financial risk. Period. It’s one of the things we buy that has gotten 100% or more expensive over the last few decades. Kinda like health care.
It used to be simple to work yourself through college. Literally you could pay for a bunch of it by flipping burgers. Then by flipping burgers and maybe getting help from your parents. It’s not possible now. Most families cannot “Afford” college. It’s why they borrow to pay for it.