Economy forces 2009 grads to dump dream colleges

UNDATED – UNDATED (AP) - More than 70 percent of high schools report in a new survey that more of their graduates are giving up on their "dream" colleges this year than in previous years.

The survey conducted by the National Association for College Admission Counseling found that the sour economy had parents less willing to shell out for prestige school unless they offered top-of-the-line assistance.

Sixty percent of high schools surveyed said they were seeing more students enroll in public instead of private universities. More than 70 percent of public universities said applications were up.

But more than half of private colleges also saw applications rise, indicating students are trying to give themselves more options.

Public universities stand to gain as students stay closer to home, but may also lose students to even less expensive community colleges; 37 percent of high schools reported more students attending two-year schools.