The cost of attending a four-year public college and universities has soared to a level not seen since the 1980s, and the costs for attending private ones have skyrocketed too.
The cost of a four year degree has risen from $12,878 to $18,664, according to a new report by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
It was the highest in the past 25 years.
The average cost of tuition for a four years public university has gone up $2,895 in the last decade.
While it’s not uncommon to have a debt-fueled college education, it’s rare that a graduate would have to pay for it, according for the report.
A graduate with a bachelor’s degree will spend a total of $40,835 on their education, compared to $25,067 for someone with a high school diploma.
“The degree is a valuable credential that’s available to most people who are willing to do the work and take the risk,” said Robert Spitzer, chief economist at Forrester Research.
A higher education education is expensive because it requires students to take on debt to attend the school.
The median amount of debt students are required to pay on their degree is $31,879, according the Federal Student Aid Data System.
It’s also not uncommon for graduates of public schools to find themselves unemployed, according Spitzer.
About 20% of people who attend a four and five-year institution earn less than $40 an hour.
And those who graduate with debt are far more likely to be unemployed than those with less debt, he said.
The Fed report comes as the number of students entering the workforce has slowed as the cost of higher education has risen.
The number of full-time jobs in the U.S. has grown by about 4 million since 2011.
At a time when the federal government is spending billions of dollars on a stimulus package, many Americans are worried that they may not be able to get the education they need to keep up with the cost.