California's Out-Of-State Tuition Premium: NC Student Says It's Reasonable, Iranian-American And Hindu Think It's Discriminatory
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In a recent blog entry,’s Brenda Walker wrote about the surge of out-of-state and international students piling into the University of California system because, unlike California residents (including California’s bounteous crop of illegal aliens), the non-Californians are billed full freight to attend, a major attraction for the cash-strapped, big-spending system.

Brenda focused on a current Los Angeles Times story [A record number of out-of-state students brings windfall for UC system, by Larry Gordon, August 17, 2014], but she didn’t remark on several of the story’s intriguing details, so I will.

First, a student from North Carolina who has an American name expresses an opinion about the steep tuition he’s paying:

During a break at UCLA’s freshman orientation, Eric Rosenbower of Greensboro, N.C., said the surcharge is reasonable because in-state residents have paid “their hard-earned money” in taxes to support UC.[ note: Rosenbower, like Eisenhower, is a  German-American name indicating 18th or 19th century immigration—no one respells their name  for the convenience of English-speakers anymore.]

Seems like a straightforward, realistic view, no?

Compare that with the complaint from a student with a distinctly non-traditional name who grew up in Texas:

UCLA economics major Farhan Mithani, who grew up outside Houston and passed up the University of Texas at Austin, feels differently.…

Mithani, 21, estimates that he will owe $120,000 in student loans by his graduation next year. Now he said he wishes he had stayed in Texas and been debt-free even though he said UCLA “is a great school.”

UC, he said, uses “out-of-state students as a kind of bank. And I think it’s wrong because I have no control over where I grew up.”

So Mithani is apparently a senior in economics who only belatedly has applied economics to his own situation.  More striking, though, is his complaint that he’d had no control over where he grew up.  Does that even rise to the level of non sequitur?

I’ll assume — and it is merely an assumption — that Mithani is a child of immigrants and, perhaps, an immigrant himself.  Then his bleat brings to my mind recent work by the Hudson Institute’s John Fonte about the breakdown of patriotic assimilation among immigrants to the United States. [America's Patriotic Assimilation System Is Broken, John Fonte,   April 18, 2013]

Although Fonte doesn’t write directly about such matters, Mithani’s complaint seems to reveal a noisy sense of entitlement that suggests such immigrants (and offspring) actually are assimilating, but only to America’s growing culture of grievance.

Then there’s an international student quoted in the Times’s article:

Utkarsh Pandey, 20, came to UCLA from Gurgaon, India, to study materials science and engineering. UCLA, he said “has given me educational, professional, and cultural experiences that I don’t feel I could’ve gotten in India or any of UCLA’s rival schools in the U.S.”

As an international student, he does not qualify for UC financial aid, and his family is paying all costs. Charging non-Californians so much extra, he complained, is “hypocritical in today’s day and age of egalitarianism.”

Pandey may not be a strong candidate for a technical career, given his weak sense of logic: How is UCLA’s tuition policy hypocritical, and what does any of this have to do with egalitarianism?  But if he does manage to remain in the U.S. after graduating, he clearly has a head start on the grievance-and-entitlement trajectory!


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