Economic uncertainty is influencing the colleges prospective students choose to attend, according to an annual report by the University of California–Los Angeles, which surveyed more than 190,000 first-time, full-time students, U.S. News reports. Nearly 68 percent of these students said the ability to finance their education was a concern, and close to 10 percent passed on a first-choice school in favor of a less expensive option, the report states. Students may find the sticker price of a private education difficult to swallow, especially at elite institutions such as Columbia University and Vassar College, both in New York. Each school landed among the top 10 in their respective categories in the 2013 Best Colleges rankings, but they also hold court as the two most expensive private schools in the country. Tuition and fees at Columbia totaled $47,426 for the 2012-2013 school year…

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