Throughout history, the cost of college has increased greatly. The cost of attending a four-year college has increased 1,122% since 1978. On average, each  American household owes $47,712 in student loans, equalling a national debt of $1.21 trillion. Students who pay for school without aid are more likely to drop out, or not graduate on time. The difference in the graduation rate of those paying on their own versus receiving aid is 21%, favoring those who receive financial backing. College education in America should be free because a better-educated society could result in an overall better society, soaring tuitions are placing higher education beyond the reach of many Americans, and student debt reduces a person’s chances of future success.     The nation as a whole, not just the individual benefits from free college education. People in society would better be able to contribute their talents and knowledge because higher education would be provided at no cost. When people receive higher education they are able to get higher paying jobs, increased income results in higher income taxes paid by college graduates. Higher taxes help to build the community, state and country. Less is spent on unemployment compensation, welfare and other social programs when there are more college graduates. College graduates are more involved in and civic participation. A greater percentage of college grads compared to non-grads are active in some form of political process. This leads them to vote in greater numbers. College graduates are more critically thinking, and display more creative attributes that enhance economic development through research programs and partnerships with business and government entities.    The price of higher education has soared to sky-high rates in recent years. In a study done by Harvard, it was found that 48% of students that dropped out did so because they could not afford college. Education should not have to be a burden onto students who just want to survive in society because they need a degree to earn the income themselves. 83% of Americans say they can’t afford the expense of college education in an Edward Jones survey. The costs of college are increasing exponentially and the aid being offered is not increasing at the same rate.    The problem some people may have with offering a free college education for all is the cost to our government and society to fund it. The education fund is approximately $107.6 billion. That is equal to about ? of social security spending, ? of Medicare spending and  ? of military funding. The education and future of our society should be more important. Welfare costs come out to approximately $439 billion, with a better-educated society due to reduced costs, that budget could be cut because the need would be cut. The costs of free higher education would not extend to private universities, but public, and the government is already loaning the students money that they can not repay. But the costs of free higher education would fall back on taxpaying Americans. But the result of a greater educated society would be the increase of higher income positions being filled and more taxes would come from the newly educated masses.     The success of citizens of our society is never guaranteed. But it is likely to increase with the decrease or riddance of student loans. The costs of students loans have become so high that it affects many days to day life.