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Student Debt strangling our youth


Replies to: Student Debt strangling our youth

  • BCEagle91BCEagle91 Posts: 154
    edited May 2013
    > My younger D took an art class at our local CC
    > last summer so she could free up a space for an
    > AP class during the school year and it was $500
    > for the class (we are charged by the credit and it's
    > almost $100 per credit). That's pretty expensive for a CC.

    Just checked my daughter's CC (MA) and the in-state rate is $176/credit hour. New England rate is $188 and outside of NE is $382. I think that rates are similar in our state (NH). CC costs vary widely - I think that they're very low in CA and are a lot more expensive in other states.

    There is the refundable tuition tax credit of $2,000 per year, up to four years and I think another $500 credit of a further $2,000 in expenses. In some states, this is probably a lot of money. In other states, it helps but doesn't cover everything.
  • mommamochamommamocha Posts: 1 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    I do not know of any student who is taking large loans. Most students I know were all concerned with cost. That was an important factor in their choice. As was true for our family. Choose the college list carefully, cast a wide net, evaluate the "catch" and choose what you can afford.

    A dream school is not a dream school if you are saddled with $60K or more in debt. I am sorry but that it not wise. Why would parents encouarge this approach? I can see where markets change and parents allow a certain amount of debt but the amounts described are enormous.

    I know when my D was applying and was accepted to schools I needed to keep my ego, and hers, in check. She was accepted to a few schools that garner the oohs and awwws. But we could not afford the bottom line.
  • yanniboy24yanniboy24 Posts: 4 Harvard Champion
    edited May 2013
    I hope this opens up some eyes to those applying to colleges soon. As a junior in high school, it certainly opened mine...
  • TheBankerTheBanker Posts: 4 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    This is a nonissue. We're talking about a very small minority with 100k+ (or even 200k+) in debt and I bet that very few of those students attended a school or majored in a field that justified the price. There are always cheaper alternatives and there are always some situations where large debt is acceptable. Debt is an unavoidable part of attending college today and the media does no favors by making it seem like everyone is taking on 100k+ debt for a degree in art history.
  • kypdurronkypdurron Posts: 26
    edited May 2013
    This type of article comes up every month at least twice on CC.
    It is getting tiring
  • CatriaCatria Posts: 111
    edited May 2013
    Will making student loans dischargeable under bankruptcy really keep tuition in check?
  • Niquii77Niquii77 Posts: 81
    edited May 2013
    I hope they don't make them dischargeable.
  • arco222arco222 Posts: 12 Harvard Champion
    edited May 2013
    Debt is an unavoidable part of attending college today and the media does no favors by making it seem like everyone is taking on 100k+ debt for a degree in art history.

    I believe you are missing the point. Students are taking on debt, graduating, and are unable to find reasonable jobs paying a living wage. Under those circumstances, any debt is oppressive, and if a student goes into default, that debt can be exponentially increased. When the "bankers" lobbied congress to make student debt non-dischargeable in bankruptcy, they took all of the risk off of the bank in making prudent loans and put the risk on the student and her co-signing parents. Debt can destroy a student's ability to get credit in the future, rent property, buy cars, get married, have children, i.e., it can destroy a good quality of life in the making.

    I recently received an offer from Discover Card to provide all the loans necessary to for my child to attend college under an educational certified loan. It was simple as pie. My daughter would apply for the loan and I would simply cosign. Then Discover would send the funds directly to the school. Nowhere did the document warn me about the hazards of default, of co-signing, or of the non-dischargeable nature of these loans. Its just business as usual for the banks and lending institutions. Take advantage whenever and wherever possible of the financially illiterate, especially eighteen year old children just starting out in life.
  • TheBankerTheBanker Posts: 4 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    I don't work in commercial banking so I wouldn't know. Good attempt though.

    I do acknowledge that debt *CAN* be detrimental but there aren't any other alternatives unless you're willing to take some extreme measure such as selling your house or forgoing an education altogether. Rising tuition (and hence rising debt) is another issue altogether and outside of the control of students. But the level of debt a student takes on IS in his control to an extent. There's the CC route, for instance. Or the in-state public route. Going to college is an investment and there is RISK involved, something that isn't always mentioned but should be because the risk-reward ratio is growing. Some colleges are not worth the 200k+ investment but students take the risk anyway (and then they cry about it on national news when it doesn't work out for them). My point is that debt is generally normal within constraints and of course you will have students with, say, 50k in debt who don't get a job after graduation. That's normal too.
  • arco222arco222 Posts: 12 Harvard Champion
    edited May 2013
    ^^^ I know some disagree, but I'm very much of the opinion that all of this easy money is primarily to blame for the fact tuition at many or most schools far outstrips inflation . . and has made it easy for States to cut back without the outcry that would otherwise ensue.

    I also believe that if students could not borrow the money to attend the expensive schools, they would attend much less expensive schools and probably be that much better off in most circumstances.
  • fractalmstrfractalmstr Posts: 12 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    I agree with others here that people who can not afford college should not go to college.

    College should be difficult to attend, and should be difficult to afford. It's our economy's natural way of maintaining the proper proportion of jobs. Those that really want the types of jobs that college graduates have will work hard to get them. Instead, the entilement mindset seems to be growing ever larger, where an increasing number of kids graduating from high school think they have the *right* to a cushy, glamorous job for the rest of their lives. It's just simply not right.

    The other issue is that our society tends to look down upon vocational jobs, or jobs that don't require degrees, thus exacerbating the problem of high-demand to go to college. We need to stop with this elitist mentality and instead encourage kids that aren't naturally college-inclined, that these jobs can provide rewarding, respectible careers for them. I think once our society fixes this problem, we will start to see more and more kids following their true passions, rather than false passions fed by false hope...

    Oh yeah, and let's get rid of for-profit schools, and/or 4-year schools with open admissions policies while we're at it! (pipe dream I know...)
  • Ghost73Ghost73 Posts: 8 College Search & Selection Champion
    edited May 2013
    The thing that gets me is that all these baby boomers were able to go to college for almost nothing, yet proceed to blame the kids for having student loan debt.
  • romanigypsyeyesromanigypsyeyes Posts: 77
    edited May 2013
    I agree with others here that people who can not afford college should not go to college.

    Hold up. I don't think anyone is saying this. They're saying go to an AFFORDABLE college not forego it all together. That's how we keep the poor poorer and get the rich richer.

    There is a way to go to college for 99% of people who want to go. It might just not be the "traditional" route of 4 years at the same place.

    I have no sympathy for people with high loans. I really think by 18 and if you're going to college, you should understand what this kind of debt means. I'm sorry if people failed you along the way and you didn't understand that (in which case I blame the parents but still have no sympathy... I know that is rude and crabby) I come from an extremely poor family and because of it, chose somewhere that gave me significant aid even if it meant picking a "lower" college. I didn't have the stats to get in to a full ride based on need college and I had a significant scholarship from a private foundation if I stayed in state. I got a great education and graduated with low debt. Others can do this too or go the CC and work route. Either way, no one should be going in to crippling debt and most AREN'T.

    ETA: Also, most students who are in this situation must come from above-poverty families (ie they're likely not kids from the inner city who have zero guidance) or else they likely wouldn't qualify for loans above federal loans.
  • GladGradDadGladGradDad Posts: 29
    edited May 2013
    The thing that gets me is that all these baby boomers were able to go to college for almost nothing, yet proceed to blame the kids for having student loan debt.
    Why would you say that? I paid back my student loans over the course of 7 years or so - i.e. it certainly wasn't 'almost nothing'. However, I didn't complain about it, never felt anyone else should pay it (including my parents), and never felt I should be able to declare bankruptcy and stick the debt to the lender. I'm not alone - many people, even 'baby boomers' did this.

    Not all colleges are ultra expensive. No one needs to attend an expensive private U and generally don't even need to attend the expensive state flagship U. It might be nice but it's not necessary. People need to live within their means and this includes being reasonable about any debt taken on for any purpose.

    Carrying a reasonable amount of debt can be enabling, such as enabling one to go to college, buy a house, buy a car, but there's a threshold beyond which the debt load is unreasonable - leveraging to the max to get a Mercedes instead of a Toyota, buying a $1M house when a $500K house would be fine, taking on >$200K for undergrad (with a cosigner of course) when one can attend undergrad for substantially less than that.

    Any 'blame' is squarely on the borrower (including the cosigners and often the parents) - not the lender. No lender forces the loan on the borrower.
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