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Sunday, August 01, 2004

There's also that pesky problem of reorganizing bureaucracies

Guest Blogger Paul Parker

Tom Ridge will likely join Powell and Rice among Those Who Won't Be Back. According to MSNBC,
Ridge, 58, has explained to colleagues that he needs to earn money to comfortably put his two children, Tommy Jr. and Lesley, through college, officials said. Both are now teenagers. Ridge earns $175,700 a year as a Cabinet secretary.
What's it take to send a child to college? That may be an odd question from a college prof, but how do other families do it? Extrapolating from 1998 census data, the income places Ridge in the top 5% of Americans, at nearly three times the 2002 median income for a family of four. Is this an issue of the difference between income and wealth? Or do more common families rely on financial aid (which, with work, helped me to attend a private a couple decades ago)?

Here are a couple other suggestions for the Ridges: consider a public university well recognized for providing educational value. Might I suggest Truman State University? A number of our students are grateful for our quality / affordability combination. And for others, the parents struck a bargain to pay for a public undergraduate education, with a promise of some more help for graduate or professional school.

Alternatively, many schools have ROTC programs that Tommy and Lesley might check into. My kid went to dental school on the Navy's dime (he tells us San Diegohas nice weather, but lots of traffic).

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