Spelman asks graduates to help students pay tuition

Spelman College officials have asked alumnae for donations to help students struggling to pay their fall semester tuition bills.

When the e-mail was sent last week, about 700 students — about one in three of the college’s nearly 2,150 students — couldn’t pay their balances. Donations started coming in and by Monday the number of students in need was down to about 400, said Reshunda Mahone, director of annual giving for the historically black women’s college.

Some students have trouble securing their finances because of the recession and the tighter restrictions many banks and lenders have placed on loans, according to national reports.

As a result colleges are seeing a rise in students struggling to pay tuition. About 65 percent of those who responded to last year’s survey from the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers said they had seen an increase in unpaid tuition bills.

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