Prejudice against poverty: the bias of Pierce College

Griffin Silver
Reporter
A single mother is caught in desperation as she discovers that one of the bus runs she depends on daily is eliminated. When she can get to school, from someone who is kind enough to carpool, she is left in constant disappointment when she sees how expensive the products are in the bookstore and in vending machines.
That’s on top of tuition and textbook costs. She is overwhelmed.
It’s apparent colleges are not places that always have their low-income students in mind.
In 2010, the U.S. poverty rate was 15 percent. This caused some students to start depending on the public transportation. As of Oct. 2, Pierce Transit has dropped 16 bus routes—affecting student transportation—because of budget cuts.
In the bookstore, prices are inflated. Students can go on the Internet and buy the same textbooks at a fraction of the price. Also at the bookstore, 100 sheets of paper can cost $3.29 and for one pen it can cost up to $1.79.
Many classes require computers and Internet access to complete assignments. Although Pierce College does encourage access to computers in the library and computer centers, if students don’t own a computer and can’t get to Pierce easily to use its computers, then a bus run being canceled could have a negative effect on their grades.
To use the Health Education Center, students are required to pay an additional membership fee of $15. Some of the people who are barely able to pay for tuition may find even this to be a nuisance.
The removal of the bus routes, the dependency on technology, the prices in the student store, vending machine prices and the prices of extra facilities create additional financial hardships for poverty stricken students.

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Prejudice against poverty: the bias of Pierce College

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