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LSU's Alexander plays role in Obama college plan

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BATON ROUGE - Four years after making the trek all the way from Minnesota, LSU grad Col Erlandson has returned to campus to move his little sister in.

Besides football, money was a factor in his decision to don purple and gold.

"LSU is a relatively cheap school compared to everything back at home," said Erlandson.  "At the University of Minnesota, the in-state tuition is about $15,000, and when I came down, it was about $9,000 for me to be out of state."

He graduated with some debt, but says it's manageable.  Relieving that burden is on President Obama's to-do list.

He detailed a plan Thursday to reward schools that keep tuition down, and reduce federal funding for institutions that don't.

LSU president Dr. F. King Alexander has been working with the White House for about six years on the system that would rate colleges according to cost, compared to the graduates' earning potential.

Alexander says he wants transparency, so parents and prospective students can make informed decisions.

"They end up picking institutions with very high tuition and fees, very low employment rates, very high in default rates, and they don't know a thing about that," said Alexander.  "So these rating systems would apply to institutions and determine which institutions are in it to make money, and which institutions are in it to help students succeed in life."

President Obama wants the new rating system in place before the 2015 school year.


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