Walking into the Wren chapel as a freshman on my way to the Great Hall to take my Honor Pledge, I could not help but notice the infamous Wren cross.
It seems hard to realize that such a simple object in a chapel could cause so much controversy in the calm community I have entered — or cost so much.
Last year, the controversy cost the College of William and Mary over $15 million in donations. Though many would like to forget about the whole thing, that kind of loss is hard to overlook.
Coupled with a drop in state funding, the College is having a hard time making up its loss. This year tuition rose 9.7 percent. The Daily Grind has increased prices to stay in business; according to owner Scott Owen, fuel costs are having the most affect.
“If I hadn’t charged more this year, I may not be in business,” he said.
Even laundry costs rose by a quarter.
The College is not the only community facing financial struggles; nearly everyone is, due to the suffering economy. The Virginia Department of Social Services reported a statewide increase of 6.8 percent in food stamp participation.
According to MSNBC, the percentage of unemployed Americans has risen to 5.7 percent. Even President George W. Bush admitted in The New York Times that “jobs are growing at a slower pace.”
Although many of us would like to explain the poor economy with the errors of the Bush Administration, they are not the only ones to blame.
The fact is that after the golden age of the Clinton Administration, when our economy was in one of the best states we’ve experienced, there were few places for it to go but down.
We at the College are feeling the effects of this economy.
As students, we tend to think that the world is very separate from us, but right now the nation’s financial situation is so bad that we are unable to ignore its effects on campus.
Cassie Powell is a freshman at the College.