Over the past quarter-century, average college tuition prices nationwide have jumped 440 percent; this rate of increase is nearly four times that of the C.P.I. over the same period. To attempt to pay for these historic increases, students and their parents have amassed historic debt– at roughly $1.3 trillion, student loan debt now exceeds even total national credit-card debt for the first time in our nation’s history. Additionally, almost half of those who enroll in college fail to graduate and of those who do graduate, 36 percent show little to no increase in the critical thinking and writing skills that a degree is supposed to signify.