It’s true as the saying implies, the best things in life really are free. Okay . . . so maybe your idea of a ‘best time’ involves a private jet flying you and your friends to a U2 concert where you’ll be treated to front-row seats and a complementary photo of everyone posing with the famous Irish foursome. Well, unless your Dad owns a jet and also happens to be close personal friends with Bono who just happens to have free tickets to his sold-out show, then yeah, that’s not going to really quality as a ‘free’ ride.
No, I’m talking about other great things that don’t cost money like, say, peace of mind, laughter among good close friends, or standing atop a mountain peak with the horizon stretching out in every direction . . . that sort of ‘best in Life’ free stuff. Oh, and if you happen to live in some countries, add college education to that list too. Say what? Yeah, you heard me right . . .
While not a complete run-down, here’s a few of the nations around the world who offer free – as in: funded through taxation, or charitable organizations rather than tuition fees – college educations: Sweden, Greece, Brazil, Scotland, Hungary, and Kenya. In Denmark, not only do you get a free education (as if that wasn’t enough), but you also get a monthly stipend as well. Pretty sweet huh?
Now before you go racing off to Norway (it’s free there too), please understand that you just can’t waltz in and register for your fall classes. In some cases there are some academic ‘qualifications’ that must be met, as in scholarships etc., but still, according to what I found out, even foreign students can study for nothing in Finland. God bless the Finish.
I know what a lot of you out there are thinking: Why would I want to go to college in another country when all the best schools are in the United States? First off, that’s an elitist position to take and part of the reason why lots of people don’t really ‘dig’ Americans so much. Secondly, where’s your sense of adventure? I know the Euro is still going through its ‘adjustment’ period, but you really wouldn’t want to study classical literature in Athens? Or for that matter, architecture?
Keep in mind: As we all hurtle unstoppably into the second decade of the 21st Century, a college education just isn’t what it used to be. As times change, so do the ways in which we cope with those inevitable changes and they societal implications they bring. Drastic times call for imaginative measures.