College Students Debate Higher Education with McDonnell - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

College Students Debate Higher Education with McDonnell

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Bob McDonnell took his campaign for governor to the University of Virginia Tuesday. He sat down for an intimate talk with students and professors about accessibility and affordability of higher education. Students were glad to have the opportunity.

"Get a feel for where our state's headed, you know what that direction is," said fourth year Wes Siler.

"In terms of the economy being the way it is, new opportunities have to be looked at, new options, and for him he seemed open to those new options," Siler added.

During the talk McDonnell applauded the Darden School of Business for using Kindles, electronic reading devices, to cut back on textbook costs. He was also open to the idea of work study program to cut tuition costs.

"We've got great universities in Virginia, but more and more, tuitions doubled over the past 12 years," said McDonnell (R).

McDonnell wants to see 100,000 more students go to college each year. The initiative carries a price tag of around $30 million.

"The nation needs an educated populous in order to stay competitive," said fourth year Kevin Tschirhart. "At the same time you run the risk of sort of lowering the standards at UVA."

While students and professors were optimistic about McDonnell's openness, some say higher education issues are getting too big for anyone to tackle.

"Personally, I'm not sure that the state government can handle it, that the federal government can handle it, because everyone is people, and we're trying our best, but there are too many problems right now," said Tschirhart.

Reported by Jenn McDaniel
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