This summer I began my degree for a Bachelors in Communication with a focus in Journalism and dropped it all in the same season. The entire reason being tuition. When it was all said and done I was paying nearly $2,000 a month for one class online. Something that would have totaled the cost of my degree to almost $60,000 not including the cost for my transfer credits.
At twenty years old it was hard to summon the strength to put myself into so much debt at such an early age. Already in the process of moving out on my home and buying a home I knew that the student loans would force me to be over a $100,000 in debt by the time I was twenty-one. By the time I graduated at twenty-two and started paying my loans back I would be forced to move back in with my parents for the foreseeable future or marry up the wealth ladder. One of the two.
I hear the horror stories all the time about someone who went away to school got a good degree and even a job in their field and then had to move back home with their parents for a few years to pay off a chunk of that debt. I love my mom and dad but that’s not happening.
I got curious and looked online and came across a website called American Student Assistance that listed all kinds of scary facts about student loan debt. Like the fact there are approximately 37 million student loans outstanding. That there is over $908 billion dollars in student loan debt.
With all the talk in Washington about the interest rates set to double this has a lot of students going college shy and some stressing about surviving the after college wreckage.
According to a PBS report done on July 1st of this year states that in today’s dollars a tuition rate for a pubic collage in 1982 including room and board was roughly $2,423. Thirty years later that number had a 257 percent increase to around $8,655. Surely the modern technology we use in colleges, computers and the like don’t cost $6.000 a year?
The PBS report already states what most of us know. The student loan debt for people under 30 has forced us to put off buying homes, new cars and taking the risk of starting our own business and instead take whatever job we can get just to pay our bills.
I have received financial aid before. So I hate when people have things on Facebook saying “Pissed I had to pay for college today. Sorry my dad works!” My dad has been disabled from what started as a work accident since I was in grade school allowing me financial aid. However financial aid wasn’t enough to pay for my journalism school. When I attempt to go back to my local community college to get a certificate in medical billing and coding so that I can go to work and hopefully find a way to pay for journalism school down the road the government aid won’t pay for any of my certificate classes. Even though it allows me a way to get to work quicker so that I can help the economy. Go figure.
Currently I have a $1,000 in student loan debt not a lot but considering that was for just one class. And it will take me a few years to pay it off especially when I add to it this fall. The thought of not going back to school has accrued to me. Knowing that even with a pay increase I will have to be working in my field for over twenty years before I pay off my student loan debt and actually start making money has nearly detoured me.
Hopefully that 2003 Cavalier of mine makes it another ten years or so…