Author Topic: Which year did you graduate in and how much debt did you end up with, if any?  (Read 24407 times)

legacyoneup

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looking to review trends in student debt over time.

DebtDerp

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2011: upwards of $115k.

I was naive, I was foolish, I had no concept of the hole I was digging for myself when I took out that first loan in 2007. The good news? I found NMHD and MMM last year and now my debt is down to about $85k. I'm slowly climbing out of that hole :)

imustachemystash

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2005.  $30,000 which includes a master's degree.  Paid off!

Cecil

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2006: None.

Between academic and athletic scholarships, a summer job, and the generosity of my parents, I graduated without any debt.

Baylor3217

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Dang. I'm old, single and debt free.

2000

$33,000

frugaldrummer

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Undergrad - 1977 - no debt (I worked as a waitress, attended a public university and received Social Security survivor benefits from the death of my father)

Graduate school - 1981 - $2,000 debt (I worked for a year in between as a lab tech, was paid as a teaching assistant during grad school, took out just the one loan for $2,000.)

Med School - 1985 - $20,000 debt (I worked for one summer between first and second year.Received some grant money - maybe the equivalent of the Pell grant? - and had one small scholarship for a few hundred dollars. Again,attended a public university. Ate a lot of beans and rice).

Even at the time, it was a very small amount of debt for a medical student - I knew colleagues who owed $100k - $150k. 

I was fortunate in that the University of California was inexpensive and high quality; I worked where possible; I was experienced at stretching a dollar (beans and rice, sewed my own clothes etc); and received the social security money and grants. I only lived at home for my first year of college, but could have saved even more if I had not moved out.


Freckles

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1995- BA Had about $22,000
1997- Teaching program added a few more thousand.

My husband graduated with his BA without ant debt, but then racked up about $23,000 on grad school a few years ago.  :(

Silvie

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Finished my BA in 2006, my first master's in 2008 and my second master's in 2011.

No debt, education in Holland is cheap compared to the US: 2000-2500 per year (2 semesters). We don't pay per course or per credit. We just pay a fixed tuition fee and we can take as many courses as we like.

Charlotte

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Undergrad -- 1996 and $40k
Grad School -- 1999 and another $80k

I paid off $20k, my dad paid off $20k and my husband paid off the last $80k.

Fletch

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2011: $0

Scholarships for tuition and some living expenses, parents helped with remainder of living expenses, I had a part time job for fun money.

lhamo

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BA 1991, $0. 

Paid for with a combination of savings (mostly social security survivor benefits my mom saved for me after my dad died), work earnings (worked 20-30 hours a week in addition to taking maximum course load including honors courses and Chinese), and scholarships (tuition waiver for my sophomore year based on high grades in freshman year).  I did have a cash flow problem in my last quarter due to flying out of state for a friend's wedding -- my sister fronted me some money to pay tuition, and told me I didn't have to pay her back as my graduation gift.  Thanks, sis!

MA 1994, $0.

Paid for with my NSF Graduate Fellowship (3 years full tuition and decent stipend).  Funded a summer fieldwork trip that became the basis for my thesis essay with another NSF grant and a grant from my university.

Ph.D. 1999, $0.

Paid for by teaching + other fellowships. 

DH also completed an MA and Ph.D. in that same time period with $0 debt.  He supported himself by teaching, fellowships, and odd jobs when necessary (worked as a dishwasher his first year in grad school).

Securing funding was not always easy.  Toward the end there were a couple of years when we were both living off of my fellowship stipend.  But I now advise the young people I work with who are contemplating grad school not to consider it unless they get a good funding package from day 1.  Grad school can be great if someone is paying you for it.  Misery if they are not and you are accumulating debt that you may not be able to pay off.






Ishmael

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1997, $6000.

Most of that was car related, as I lived at home but had to travel quite a ways. At first I had my own car, but it died and then I did a combination of biking 10km to the nearest bus stop, and borrowing my parent's car. I worked co-op terms and summer jobs throughout university and mostly paid for everything. I didn't have the best grades, but I did OK.

When I graduated, my parents (whom I borrowed the money from) forgave my debt so I guess I ended up with $0.

Then I made a huge splash into consumerism when I bought a BRAND NEW Toyota Tercel. But I drove it into the ground over the course of 15 years :)

NinetyFour

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1983, undergrad, no debt, thanks for parents.

2000, Doctorate, $16,000 debt, paid off in 2004.

GuitarStv

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2005 - No debt.  I took a year off between high school and university to work full time, worked through all of my summers and crappy (but OK paying) jobs.  I was lucky to be able to have my parents to cover half the costs of housing and food.

grantmeaname

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2015, $0 for three degrees.

davisgang90

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1990 - 0 debt (parents paid) for my BS in finance
2012 - 0 debt MS in National Resourced Strategy - Uncle Sugar paid for this one!

Eleden

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2009 - $13k. Would have been less if I had applied for federal and state aid =(

Russ

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2103 - $0, thanks to scholarships, jobs, and generous parents the first couple years

wing117

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2103 - $0, thanks to scholarships, jobs, and generous parents the first couple years

Guys! I found a time traveler! We're on to you, Russ.

I didn't graduate, so I don't have anything else to really contribute. :) 0 college debt though!

mlipps

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2011, about $24k federal and $12k private

mc6

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Class of 2000 with a BA in English, $18K all federal loans.

I had it all paid off by 2006.

NumberCruncher

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2011 with no debt, thanks to scholarships and my benevolent parents.

lackofstache

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2008; $6K in student loans. I spent 5 years there so I could work more/pay for more. My parents helped w/ books, computers, tuition if I needed it. The $6K came from my first year. It's still not paid off as it's at 2.35% interest.

MissStache

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2004, $0.  A million thanks to my generous parents and a hell of a deal for in-state tuition at a big, public university.

I cannot possibly state how grateful I am that they talked me out of going to Tulane...

MrsPete

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I thought I was one of the oldest here, and this proves it. 

1988 and 1990 -- no debt. 

Few people borrowed money when I was in college, and the rest of us thought they were making bad choices.  Thinking back to my experience and looking at my college daughter today, I see lots of differences in our experiences (though we both chose rather similar state schools in the same area).  Her friends are borrowing more, but from what she says, not many of them have jobs -- she's one of the few who works.  Even in the summer months, many of them aren't working.  They do not seem to have the concept of "borrowing is bad" that we had back in the 80s.   


Grindin' Away

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Me:  Graduated from college in 2005, no SL debt.  (extremely privileged by generous parents, and promise not to take that for granted)

Wife:  Took out around 63k between 2004 and 2008 for undergrad and masters.  (in 1999, her parents spent her college fund on a wood burning stove due to fear of Y2K)

2009:  65k  (a few of her deferments still accumulated interest)
2011:  60k
Now:  around 48k
4-5 years from now:  $0

MMM and all of you on the Forum have given us the ultimate motivation to knock 'em out as soon as possible.

xocotl

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2007, no debt from a combination of going to state university, working part time jobs the entire time, and parents contributing as well.

rubybeth

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Undergrad - 2003 - $0 (parents paid as long as I lived at home and kept my job)
Graduate school - 2009 - $37k - now $0 (paid off after DH's $15k) - kept about $10k of this as our "emergency fund" which was kind of dumb but we weren't sure when we'd be able to get jobs so we started paying back aggressively once we landed full-time work

Gin

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Dh 1994 no debt- he had pell grant and worked part time throughout college.
Me-1997 no debt thanks to parents saving and paying for it.

bogart

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B.A., 1990, $10k (other costs covered by my mom).  Ph.D., 1997, $0K.  Paid off the u'grad loans while in grad school.

If you want actual data, not just message board anecdotes, on the topic, you might look here:  http://www.newyorkfed.org/newsevents/mediaadvisory/2013/Lee022813.pdf , or here:  http://projectonstudentdebt.org/state_by_state-data.php , or perhaps see if you can access the data collected and licensed here:
http://www.petersonsdata.com/

mustachejd

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2002 - $0 debt

I applied for and received a number of scholarships my senior year of high school.  The majority of the programs deposited the money directly into my account at university.  Since I already received full tuition, room, board, and a stipend at my school, the resulting positive balance in my account turned into a lovely check that I would deposit into my personal accounts every semester. 

As I wound up working all four years, I never touched this "school money."   

Paul der Krake

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2012: finished with a Masters degree and 0 debt, thanks to generous parents, some odd jobs, and starting school when tuition rates were still 3,000 and some change per year in the UK.

jba302

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2005: $12.5k.

My sister-
2012 (Physical Therapist) - $115k.

ace1224

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2006 - undergrad 0 debt.  my parents paid out of pocket and incurred 0 debt

2012 - graduate school - 0 debt, my company paid for it and i owe them 2 years before i can leave (which i don't plan on ever doing)

JessieImproved

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I graduated 2004, hubs in 2003.  We married in 2004 (before I graduated) so these numbers are combined.

Student loans: $12,500
Credit cards: $13,000

I'm proud to say all of that is loooong gone. :-)

Avolonte

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Graduated with BA in 2002, $17,000 in student loans--paid back in 18 months. Attended 5 graduate classes in 2006-2007, did not graduate (moved out of state, married and had kid), ended up with $18,500 in loans, with $12,500 still to pay back.

Cinder

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Myself: 2007 - 0 undergrad

My Wife: 2008 - 0 undergrad, gradschool 2012 ~29k  (currently down to 6k remaining)

My father had a nice 529 plan for me that had a little left in it at the end.

My wife had her parents cover a bunch, and had some scholarships for a few things while in undergrad.  For gradschool she took out the SLs before we got married, and finished up her schooling just after we got married.  Been crushing the debt as hard as we can.

giggles

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2008 - $0

Grad school - pay as I go, 1 class per semester.  Paying cash, so no debt.

Psychstache

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2010: a little over 70K for double major BS and MA. not really chipping away at it since I am currently planning on using PSLF in 2020.

legacyoneup

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My sister-
2012 (Physical Therapist) - $115k.

College fees seem to be getting out of hand. This is ridiculous. I sure hope this doesn't become the norm.

Mine :
Graduated in 2001 : Parents paid $400 in college fees altogether (state college); scholarship covered the rest.

Yes, I'm old too....

KulshanGirl

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1994 - $0 student loans.  Thanks mom and dad! 

Also, $8k credit card debt, all facepunchy.  It could have been much, much worse.  It was high enough to feel like an emergency for a 22 year old back then, but low enough that I could get it taken care of. 


SwordGuy

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1981, 1 class short of a masters, $0.

spouse: 2000, phd, $8000.

Theadyn

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I went later in life.  Graduated 2004, $19k in SL's...  paid off in 2007.

clarkm04

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BS: 2000

MA: 2005

Had 42ish in total student loan debt.  Still paying 205/mo.

Wife had 10-15ish in total student loan debt. 

A 2005 BA grad; 2011 Master's. 

Master's = $0.  She got a job at a university that had deeply reduced tuition for employees to pay it off.

Her monthly bill is 140ish.

Both of us are locked in at 3.25%.

ToeInTheWater

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1981, $0

combination of parents + summer internships (in engineering)

ritchie70

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1990, BS, College of Engineering - U of Illinois, $0 (Thanks, Dad.)

Dad owned his own business and in a no-doubt illegal tax dodging move, put me on his payroll as a salaried employee who just coincidentally earned roughly annual tuition + fees + room + board.

I did occasionally do a bit of work for the company a few times a year but certainly nothing worth as much as I got paid.

Wife - BS Math/English, + MBA, finally completed 2008 or so, $100,000+ in student loans. We keep our finances fairly separate because we have very different cash management styles so I'm not entirely sure to be honest.

[Edited to add wife.]
« Last Edit: October 08, 2013, 10:50:44 AM by ritchie70 »

avonlea

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Me--2001: $0 Debt (scholarships, summer jobs, and working as an RA senior year)
Husband--2001: $0 Debt (parents and part-time job)

*Husband's parents also bought us a new car as a graduation present.  It's been the only vehicle we have owned during our marriage.  Starting out married life at age 22 with only needing to pay for rent, utilities, groceries, and gas made having a high savings rate possible (and made the decision for me to stay home with babies an easy one).  We are really grateful and try to tell them so every now and then--they always brush it off, but I think they do like hearing it.

Kriegsspiel

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2008 - $0.

nawhite

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Me: 2009 Undergrad ~20k 2010 Grad was another 40k for a total around 60k

Wife: 2010 $160k OMGWTF?!?! for 4 years of undergrad?!?! *now-mustachian wife reaches back in time and face punches her earlier self*

Fortunately we just got down under 100k of student loan debt between the 2 of us last month and broke $0 of net worth this month. We both have realized that the reason for those decisions when we were in school was due to lack of financial education and plan to teach our kids very differently than our parents taught us!

DebtDerp

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Fortunately we just got down under 100k of student loan debt between the 2 of us last month and broke $0 of net worth this month. We both have realized that the reason for those decisions when we were in school was due to lack of financial education and plan to teach our kids very differently than our parents taught us!

Great job! I too will be stopping the cycle of debt and I'm starting with my little sister who will be heading to college in a few years. I don't care what I have to do, she won't be taking out any student loans.