Since some people apparently have never heard of Google... The University of Virginia is considered a "public Ivy" - a state-funded university that has a quality of education equal to the Ivy League in many areas. It's sad there are so few.
Times haven't changed much. In 1961, I couldn't afford to go to our state university; I "had to go" to an Ivy League school with a full scholarship. Years later, as a professor at my state's flagship university, we were unable to attract top talent from the inner city. They "had to go" to Stanford with a full scholarship.
A nice romantic piece about Italy. However most of my Italian friends are not so stoic as to be able to reflect on the impermeable state of history and shrug it off. They are more than disgusted. They are desperate as the wheels of government have ground to a halt in face of corruption and political turmoil. The university system has been particularly hard hit where "consolidation" and the suspension of resources has led many talented academics to seek " una porta" or a way to exit to retirement or a job abroad. Yes there will always be the talented barista shuffling espresso and the scrumptuous carciofi and the elegant shops on via Veneto for tourist enjoyment. However even on sunny spring day for most Italians there is a black cloud that shrouds hope for a better future.
Maybe we should funnel all the money that is currently being "loaned" to students and pump it into the State University system with the agreement that each dollar allocated to State U. would be matched by each State. The result would be dramatically lower tuitions and therefore much lower debt burdens for students upon graduation. Our State University system is yet another national embarrassment. No other country in the world charges its own citizens the tuitions we do. Attending even public college is now a high stakes financial proposition. Let private institutions charge whatever they want but we have to make the State systems affordable again.
Two of my friends put themselves through college this way (one at the flagship state university and one at a local private university). It wasn't fun, but as neither of them could expect parental assistance, it was the best option for them.
There is a very simple test for the validity and good faith of voter ID laws - what ID do they accept? If, for example, they accept a State-issued concealed weapons license but they don't accept a student ID from a State University, the goal is voter suppression (younger voters are more likely to vote for Democrats). Really, it's that simple. All around the country, the new "election protection" acts cut out State University - issued student IDs.