How to fund college

Funding is available for those students who want to attend college through a variety of programs and scholarships, including Pell Grants.

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As college tuition rises in America and politicians fret over the outsourcing and automation of factory jobs, this story on the Brookings Institution's website should resonate across our nation.

Its gist: if you don't have a college education, your chances of long-term employment with decent wages are drastically reduced.

We've known that, right? Sure. And we've also understood the logic that claims university isn't for everyone, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. Lots of entrepreneurs without college degrees are wealthy and successful because they work hard and make wise business decisions.

But new data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that "Americans with college degrees can account for all of the net new jobs created over the last decade. In stark contrast, the number of Americans with high school degrees or less who are employed, in this ninth year of economic expansion, has fallen by 2,995,000."

Think about that. Since the end of the Great Recession, the U.S. economy has improved and job growth has increased, specifically in certain fields of science and technology. But jobs for those without college degrees have decreased nonetheless.

By the way, Alabama -- the state, not the university -- continues to rank near the bottom in rankings of the affordability of four-year college degrees in America. Even with last week's about the Toyota-Mazda factory site in Huntsville, that's a terrible sign for our state's long-term job prospects.

-- Phillip Tutor