Even as studying in Kenya is becoming more and more costly, Universities in Germany are now free of tuition fees for all including international students. Yesterday, Lower Saxony became the last of seven German states to abolish their tuition fees, which were already extremely low. Kenyan universities have for the past two months been looking for ways of pegging fees on a given programme a student takes.
Just like in Kenya, German universities had been charging for tuition since 2006. But immediately after a few years the measure proved unpopular, and German states began dropping them one by one. It is now all gone throughout the country, even for foreigners. This measure which proved to be a major stumbling block especially for African students from poor backgrounds will see students flock to the country to pursue their careers.
The measure means that now, both domestic and international undergraduate students attending public universities in Germany will be able to study in Germany for free. The students will only be required to provide just a small fee to cover administration– usually between €150 and €250 (US$170-280) – and other living expenses costs per semester (food, transport, accommodation, entertainment, course materials and other necessities).
Germans barely had to pay for undergraduate study even before tuition fees were abolished. Semester fees averaged around €500 ($630). It is now gone.
Free education is a concept that is embraced in most of Europe with notable exceptions like the U.K., where the government voted to lift the cap on university fees in 2010, and tripled the tuition fees thereafter. The measure has reportedly cost more money than it brought in. The Guardian reported last March that students are failing to pay back student loans.
Maybe for now, learning in German might be the best financial choice an high school student can make.
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