How much does a college education cost?

Grigori Reznichenko ::: Young people in the USSR. Answers to questions

Nothing to the student. But it costs the state be­tween six and eight thousand roubles to train one student. Economists have calculated that on the average the annual cost for the state of providing for a student at a day college is 1,200 roubles; that does not include expenditures on capital con­struction. In some colleges, especially the arts col­leges, the sum is even bigger-1,885 roubles a year per student.

Most of the money the state spends on education goes to paying the salaries of faculty members and other college employees and the maintenance grants to students, to financing students' practical work and scientific research, and to purchasing books for college libraries. Other expenses are related to purchases of study and other equipment, capital investment in the construction of new colleges and student hostels and their maintenance and repair.

To that one should add the cost of such free services as medical aid, holiday facilities, and sports facilities and sports gear which students can use free of charge.

As for the maintenance grants, more than 70 per cent of the students studying full-time-or at day colleges as we say-get a monthly grant.

Students who get top marks in their exams receive a higher monthly grant-25 per cent above the usual one. And the most brilliant students are awarded scholarships named after outstanding scientists and top public and state figures, writers, producers and artists. The Literary Institute, for instance, has a Maxim Gorky scholarship-in honour of the famous writer.

The top honour to be won by a student is a Lenin scholarship. It is awarded to students with excellent results in their studies, who do scientific work and are active in the college's social work.

Students' maintenance grants are paid all through the year, covering not only study time, but holidays as well.

Each year the state spends 1,600 million roubles on grants to students of higher and specialised sec­ondary educational establishments.