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Beloved Campus Mascots Get Sent off to Slaughter; College Tuition Increases While Student Loans Drop

College Tuition Increases While Student Loans Drop. The College Board Advocacy & Policy Center released reports suggesting that while tuition prices continue to climb, total financial aid for students has reached a stalemate. Not only did tuition increase by 4.8 percent between 2011 and 2012 for in-state public institutions, but the average price tag for room and board rose by $325. Students at private institutions fared even worse as their tuition increased over $1,100 in just one year, making total average cost just under $40,000. Besides increasing tuition prices, unprecedented numbers of students are requesting financial aid. Stafford Loan borrowers nearly doubled and Pell Grant recipients have increased 4.3 to 9.4 percent in the last decade. [Huffington Post]

LSU Photoshops Out Crosses Painted on Student Fans' Chests. LSU photographers snapped a picture of four cheering fans, known as the "Painted Posse," at LSU's October 13 football game against USC. The picture was used on LSU's website, Facebook page, and e-mail newsletter; however, it had obviously been photoshopped. The "Painted Posse," an openly Christian group of friends, are known for not only their intricate body paint, but also for the crosses painted over their hearts–and in LSU's edited shot, the crosses were missing. LSU initially responded by saying that it didn't want to make any religious or political statements by including the crosses, but has since released a formal apology, saying that in the future they would use a different picture rather than make the same kinds of edits. [Huffington Post]

Deferred Action Slowly Getting in Gear. Two months after Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was set into motion, thousands of undocumented students have already applied after living under the radar for so many years under the fear of deportation ingrained into their daily lives. Since the first DACA applications on August 15, nearly 180,000 people have submitted requests, 4,591 of whom have been approved. While these numbers are a good start, they represent just a fraction of the estimated 1.7 million people potentially eligible for the program. In order to reach out to nervous potential applicants, some immigrant rights groups have set up free online screenings and smart phone applications to help undocumented youth figure out if they are eligible. [Reuters]

Campus Mascots Head to the Kitchen. Green Mountain College, an environmentally friendly liberal arts college in Vermont, is mourning over the college's decision to slaughter the students' beloved mascots, Bill and Lou. Grown oxen, Bill and Lou have worked for the last 10 years on the campus's Cerridwen Farm. However, after Lou injured his leg earlier this year, he is no longer able to work on the farm, and because oxen work as a team, both of them will be served at the college dining hall. Although petitioners have gathered more than 30,000 signatures from Green Mountain students and community activists to save the animals, the college has reiterated that "this is not a petting zoo," and that the oxen will provide enough meat for over a month. [NPR]

Jennifer Hicks is a Communications Intern for Campus Progress.

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