The majority of all degrees in the United States are granted by public institutions, though private universities grant a fair share of bachelors and masters degree as well. For-profit universities grant nearly 20 percent of all associates degrees in the U.S. An associate’s degree usually takes two years to complete and can qualify a student for a variety of technical or caretaking positions.
In recent history, state tax dollars provided the largest amount of revenue for public institutes of higher education. According to 2010 figures, state appropriations provided 62.5 billion U.S. dollars nationwide to higher education. Student tuition and fees also provide a significant sum of revenue for these institutes, while many institutions also benefit from endowment funds. In 2013, Harvard University had a total endowment fund value of 32 billion U.S. dollars.
The rising cost of tuition in recent years continues to scandalize the nation. Students attending Columbia University, one of the leading universities in the U.S., are expected to pay just over 49,000 U.S. dollars for the 2014 academic year alone. Across the board, tuition costs have increased since the early 2000s. The total individual cost of attending a public university is predicted to be 22,000 U.S. dollars per year on average by the year 2016.