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A recent survey of 284 schools conducted by The National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU) revealed a projected drop in student enrollment and reduction in tuition deposits at approximately 30% and 44%, respectively. David L. Warren, president of NAICU, attributes the drop to financial strains felt by students across the nation. Reduced savings plans, limited home equity access, and lost jobs are just a few of the recessionary effects facing families. The survey found requests for financial aid up 83% at the private institutions. Colleges answered with higher institutional aid awards and favorable responses to student aid appeals. The majority stated that increases in federal aid programs ( Pell Grant, Stafford Loan and Work Study) also made a positive difference. Private colleges remain strongly committed to helping families afford a college education despite the pinch felt from lower enrollment and endowment losses. Will the price of a private school affect your decision to apply and or attend? Send me your comments.