When I was in high school I knew there was no way I could afford to go to college. I knew I couldn’t afford it and I knew there was no way my parents could afford to foot the bill for me to go to school. The only option for me was a scholarship.

EKU offers great scholarships for in-state students, and with a 3.8 GPA and an ACT score of 32 I was eligible for the Excellence Scholarship, a $52,000 scholarship distributed as $6,500 per semester. That’s enough to cover the cost of a dorm, tuition and books. It was the full ride I needed to be able to go to college.

I lived in Martin Hall, one of the cheapest dorms on campus, which cost just under $2,000 per semester, and my tuition was just under $4,000. That left about $500 for books, which meant my finances were set and I could afford to attend school.

Three years after I lived in a dorm, Martin has been torn down and the cheapest dorms on campus are being replaced with suite style rooms in the new Martin Hall. Those are $500 more per semester than Martin’s tiny rooms, which I was willing to live with to be able to afford books.

If I was put in a dorm today, on the same excellence scholarship, I wouldn’t be able to afford textbooks.

Since I’ve been at EKU, Commonwealth and Martin have both been torn down and soon two of the cheapest dorms on campus, Dupree and Todd, will be demolished.

The cheapest dorms on campus are being torn down and replaced with dorms that cost hundreds more to live in. It won’t be long before the scholarship that I got that was the only reason I could afford to attend college and get books won’t even cover the cost of tuition and housing.

If EKU continues to tear down the cheapest dorms and replace them with dorms that rival or exceed the cost of the most expensive dorms on campus it will prevent a group of hardworking students from attending college. Students who devoted themselves to education and strived to attend a local university and earned scholarships that could cover the costs needed for them to get a college education will be denied the opportunity to get a degree and succeed in the career they are willing to work to be a part of.