Published: Monday, July 9 2012 8:00 p.m. MDT
I finally paid off my Phd student loans by cashing out my 401k. Instead of
retirement, I now drive a truck. Sadder but wiser, at least none of my kids have
any student loans.
Every time they raise the amounts they will allow for student loans the colleges
immediately raise the tuition. Eight years of college taught me that some, and
it is just some, but some of the college professors I had would have thought a
three hour work week was extreme. It's quite the gravy train for a few and
they need to be weeded out and the sooner the better.
The story should mention that the student loans for a liberal arts education are
the majority entering into default. Still can't find a job
with your teaching or micro-biology degree? Look outside of upstate new York.
Nevada is searching for teachers and would give you a nice paying job. And still can't find something? Use IQ92's example and look outside
your field. There are plenty of jobs out there and the degree can give you an
edge.If we learned personal responsibility, more than half this problem
would go away.We might become the most "educated" country,
but that doesn't mean we become the smartest.
About reference to athletics - those budgets are required to be separate. Also,
colleges use sports for "marketing." And "football" funds Title
IX. No football - no Title IX. Consider that.
One has to wonder if for-profit schools targeting working adults should be
charging tens of thousands of dollars for a sub-standard education.Should it cost over $10,000 to learn to cut hair or drive a truck? Absolutely
My experience mirrors Brian's: the cost of my graduate school tuition was
not tied to the average salary of a graduate, but on the amount the federal
government would lend the student. Students are merely a pass-through to get
federal dollars to schools. If we want education costs to drop then
we should stop subsidizing tuition costs.
My husband and I paid back our last student loan the month before our oldest
started college. It just seemed like "free money" and that is how the
financial aid dept at our college encouraged it. We really stressed to all our
kids to not use student loans unless absolutely necessary. All our kids went
through under grad and 1 grad school with no loans. My son did however marry a
girl with 50,000 in loans for dental hygiene school (really for a 2 yr
program!?) which they are now struggling to make the 600 a month payments on
instead of being able to buy a house. It is a crazy world out there today!
The thing that is most telling about this article is that the architects of this
grand federal program were surprised..."How did a once-modest federal
program spiral out of control, weighing down low- and middle-income families
like the Brezlers that it was designed to help?"Yep, they were
surprised. None of the other carefully planned federal programs spiraled out of
control; Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Welfare, the Department of
Education, Affirmative Action, etc. etc. How in the world could a program with
the very best of intentions get out of hand in a country with 300+ million
people and budget in the hundreds of billions (and now trillions) of dollars get
out of hand? How were the architects supposed to see this coming. There is not
way they could see the future. And the program was so well intended.The sad thing is that the government is sure to suggest a new
'program' to fix the old 'program'. Won't that be
This is a great article that explains why we can't continue to pour more
money into the system. We must make hard choices, cut spending, eliminate
entiltlement programs and special interests and stop bailing out CEO's and
green companies that are a farce at best.
College loans should be for tuition only and should be paid directly to the
college. Professors and administrators at State colleges should not be paid
health and welfare benefits.
"Increases in financial aid in recent years have enabled colleges and
universities blithely to raise their tuitions, confident that Federal loan
subsidies would help cushion the increase; Bennett wrote in a 1987 op-ed piece
in the New York Times."That's it in a nutshell. When I
attended private college 1981/85 the *maximum* a student could borrow under a
Federally guaranteed loan program over four years was $10,000. Guess what? My
four year tuition came in at a shade over $15,000 (all in). The difference was
easily made up with summer and part time work. The schools knew they could not
charge a tuition rate of much more than students could borrow; clearly the same
holds true today. Another fine example of the road to perdition being paved with
the government's good intentions.
Part of the problem is that schools have to pay a higher salary to educators
with a Masters Degree than they do a bachelor degree. They were foolish to waste
their money. Once you have a job, you can work on a higher degree to increase
your income. In my personal opinion, master degrees in education are a waste of
time. I thought about getting mine, but the cost and the sheer boredom of
education classes changed my mine. I borrowed money to make it though college,
but I got a degree where I knew they had job openings and was willing to move
anywhere on the Wasatch Front. Why is one of the people getting another degree
in Urban Planning? I don't think there are a lot of jobs in that area. My
cousin got a degree in Foreign Affairs and is so far in debt, her boyfriend
won't marry her. Loans should only be there for the ones who can't get
an education any other way. I had no ability to get a job where we were living.
(Really small town, with few jobs unless I wanted to work in a mine.
We have also encouraged our children to choose a field and study...and pay for
their education and training as they go. So far, with a couple of small
glitches, they are doing so. And they see how it will benefit them down the
road. I woke up to the "student-as-a-conduit for federal money" a while
ago. I teach at a University and see that it is true. The more loan money
available, the higher the tuition...it's a spiral. And Universities go hog
wild with building programs to improve the "country club" appeal of
their campuses, to compete for students...all the while knowing they will be
able to pay for it with laundered federal student loan money. It's truly a
vicious cycle. We should be smarter, more patient, and more self-reliant.Don't get me wrong. I'm all for education. And if we want a
good liberal arts education, we should get it...but we should also know that
such a degree has other purposes than job training and will likely not result in
a good ROI.
The government should not be sponsoring student loans. Private institutions
would perform this function much more efficiently. So long as the government
prints money to fund programs like this an others, there will be false demand
signals given to colleges and universities that their education is valuable
enough to warrant increases in fees, tuition and other costs. Once the false
demand is taken out of the system, education institutions will have to become
more efficient as the demand for their services declines. Of course, this is all
economics - and public policy is not always determined by economics but rather
at the polls. Sad.
Just one comment. Some people make the answer to every single problem, cut,
cut, cut. This may be a good idea, but then again it might not.
Perhaps the answer is more complex and might include a more thoughtful process.
In the article we compared 1965, 1985, 2012 figures with no consideration of
inflation. In 1965 a new car cost $2000 - 3000, so the cost of a year of
college was about the same. In 2012, the average new car costs how much? The
real problem here seems to be steadily increasing costs for everything including
education with stagnant or decreasing wages. Perhaps we need to
look into why our wages are decreasing while our GDP and other indicators are
still increasing. Where oh where is all this money going? I have my opinion on
this issue and it is different than many of yours, but it can't continue or
we will be a third world nation, with a small extremely uber rich wealthy class
and a large and very poor worker class.
Isn't it interesting that anything the government subsidizes the costs go
up and not down?There's a lesson to be learned here.In the 70s, I attended Idaho State University in Pocatello, Idaho for $205.00
per semester. Anybody care to guess what it costs now?$3,035.00 per
shuttdlrl stated, "Professors and administrators at State colleges should
not be paid health and welfare benefits."Why should they be
treated any differently than any other employee?Casey stated that
sports and the university budgets are separate, thus insinuating that students
don't shoulder some of the athletic burden. At the U of U that is not
true, there was about a $110 increase in student fees tied directly to the
U's admission to the PAC12. I think that is shameful. The only
"marketing" that is done goes back into the athletics budget.
We are still fairly well off in Utah, the costs are much lower here than just
about anywhere in the country. I don't think the public schools are so
much to blame as the for-profit schools, the ones constantly advertizing on TV.
Those places are incredibly expensive, their classes are not on par with real
colleges, and for the most part, they don't offer credentials that will get
people to jobs that pay well enough to pay off the loans necessary to
graduate!State colleges offer a lot of options for working adults,
online, evening and weekend classes, with better education and far lower tution
than those almost fraudulent for profit schools.
rvalens2: I heartily agree, in the late 60's I was charged $160.00 per
quarter for full load at the University of Utah, I have no idea what it is now,
but I'm sure it's nowhere neat that
I love that so many people are so willing to blame the victims. It is not the
student's fault that their parents bought houses they could not afford and
that bankers helped create this lousy economy. Students are only trying to do
the best they can. If old people would retire then, there would be job openings
for the next generation.
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