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Around the Internet => Antimustachian Wall of Shame and Comedy => Topic started by: WhiteTrashCash on August 15, 2019, 09:49:11 PM

Title: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 15, 2019, 09:49:11 PM
https://truththeory.com/2019/08/14/these-alarming-posts-shows-how-bad-the-student-debt-system-is-affecting-people-lives/?fbclid=IwAR0_CuwNqKg1DsB8KAV1NpqJPeY4JzGGzbC8ETkzuMl1ugNaSkQPL8wKH2Q (https://truththeory.com/2019/08/14/these-alarming-posts-shows-how-bad-the-student-debt-system-is-affecting-people-lives/?fbclid=IwAR0_CuwNqKg1DsB8KAV1NpqJPeY4JzGGzbC8ETkzuMl1ugNaSkQPL8wKH2Q)

"Please, rich people, step in and save me from having to repay money I willingly borrowed so I could finance the training for my career! It's impossible to ever repay $30,000. This debt will follow me until my dying days!"

Meanwhile, I have personally paid off $41,000 of the $74,000 of student loans I borrowed to finance my education and I'm on track to have it paid off entirely within the next three years.

"Everybody says 'don't buy avocado toast' and 'don't drink Starbucks', but that makes absolutely no difference in paying off debt!"

Yeah, you have to make your own avocado toast, make your own coffee, pack your own lunch, make your own dinners instead of paying for takeout delivery apps, ride a bicycle or walk instead of drive, get movies and books from the library instead of buying them, get clothes at the thrift shop instead of new from fashion boutiques, clean your own house instead of hiring a service, etc. etc. etc.

"It's all the Boomers' fault. Nobody ever had to do anything before our generation. Everyone just had $100,000 jobs handed to them when they graduated from high school and the world was a Utopia before the Boomers came along and burned the nation to the ground before urinating on the ashes."

Actually, a lot of people didn't have the opportunity for education back during the Boomer generation and a lot of people suffered for it, which is why LBJ's Great Society programs were enacted. The Boomers caught the worst of it when all the big industries were shipped overseas between the 1970 and 1990s and they were hit square in the face in their retirement years by the Great Recession (which you probably don't remember because that happened back in 2008-2009 before Snapchat existed.)

"You need to pay my student loan debt for me! I can't possibly be expected to pay my own bills."

No, shut up.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Not There Yet on August 15, 2019, 10:56:03 PM
Quote
"It's all the Boomers' fault. Nobody ever had to do anything before our generation. Everyone just had $100,000 jobs handed to them when they graduated from high school and the world was a Utopia before the Boomers came along and burned the nation to the ground before urinating on the ashes."

THANK YOU!  As a Boomer who came of age during the era of "stagflation" (double-digit inflation, double-digit unemployment), I appreciate someone who realizes we didn't have everything handed to us.  I didn't have any student debt, but I completed my lower-division classes at a community college and completed my degree at a state university.  I also went to night school while working full-time during the day, lived in crappy apartments and drove a crappy Plymouth Horizon that I used to glue back together with three-minute epoxy.  I'm retired now, but I never made $100,000 a year - not even close.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: CarolinaGirl on August 16, 2019, 06:22:41 AM
I’ve also been seeing more comments lately about how the Boomers were a horrible generation.  Just blows my mind...  I couldn’t be more proud of ALL 4 of my grandparents and how they hustled and busted their asses for everything they achieved in life.  Best role models ever!
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Travis on August 16, 2019, 07:02:13 AM
Please tell me whatever it was I just read doesn't count as journalism. It's just a collection of unverified memes and Twitter rants.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: FIRE47 on August 16, 2019, 07:04:06 AM
I was with you until the Snapchat comment - settle down grandpa.

The truth is somewhere in the middle - things are different now but really not that bad compared to most generations in human history. Just worse than the last couple by the few measures relating to student loans. 30k in debt isn’t a life sentence but it sure is worse than none.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: fattest_foot on August 16, 2019, 08:03:36 AM
THANK YOU!  As a Boomer who came of age during the era of "stagflation" (double-digit inflation, double-digit unemployment), I appreciate someone who realizes we didn't have everything handed to us.  I didn't have any student debt, but I completed my lower-division classes at a community college and completed my degree at a state university.  I also went to night school while working full-time during the day, lived in crappy apartments and drove a crappy Plymouth Horizon that I used to glue back together with three-minute epoxy.  I'm retired now, but I never made $100,000 a year - not even close.

This is a story I notice a lot of people with very large student loans don't have. They didn't work a single day in college and they also went straight to a 4 year university (which apparently they couldn't afford).

It's hard for me to have empathy when someone doesn't even try.

There are certainly people that were taken advantage of by the system, and definitely those who got loans for good reasons, but I think they're the minority.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Not There Yet on August 16, 2019, 08:13:07 AM
I actually got into a (pointless) argument with someone on Facebook about this.  He was complaining about having to go into debt to go to college.  I suggested going to community college and transferring to a state school, as well as working during college to reduce the amount of debt he'd have to take on.  The response was, "Well, I have to go into debt anyway, so I might as well enjoy the college experience".  There it is.  It's not about preparing for a profession.  It's about maximizing the "experience". 

The article isn't as bad as the headline - https://nypost.com/2017/11/18/you-can-count-on-getting-squat-when-your-parents-die/

How are boomers screwing their kids?  By having the audacity to live long enough to spend their retirement savings, thus "cheating" their millennial kids out of their inheritance.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Just Joe on August 16, 2019, 08:14:51 AM
"Please, rich people, step in and save me from having to repay money I willingly borrowed so I could finance the training for my career! It's impossible to ever repay $30,000. This debt will follow me until my dying days!"

Meanwhile some of them are paying down one or even two expensive vehicle notes, taking vacations, etc. Some of them. I recognize that there are people who are genuinely struggling without the frivolous spending. We need to separate the two those conversationally.

DW had $45K worth of student loans for an advanced degree to advance her career. We paid it down in about three years by being frugal in ways commonly discussed here in the forums - and while paying on a mortgage and childcare expenses.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: lookingforadelorean on August 16, 2019, 08:16:18 AM
I think anyone can cherry pick anecdotal evidence to support their side of the argument. But when you consider the overall economic picture, it’s easy to see why current students feel disadvantaged. Also from that article:

Since 1987 when adjusting for inflation, the % increase in:

➡️ Tuition costs at public universities : 183%
➡️ Tuition costs at private universities: 142%
➡️ Minimum wage: 20%
➡️ Early career salaries: 3%

Let’s not forget that many (most?) boomers got jobs with pensions. Hell, my grandmother went back to work at a Kraft factory slicing cheese after she raised her six children. She got a pension with that job AND it included lifetime medical benefits! How many people of any generation have that kind of compensation now?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Not There Yet on August 16, 2019, 08:42:08 AM
That type of "corporate socialism" ending in the 1980's.  Unless they worked in government or stayed with the same employers for their entire careers (and those employers had pension plans), boomers are not that likely to have pensions of any consequence.  Medical retirement benefits are rarer still.  If millennials want to blame someone for the student loan crisis, the retirement crisis and the healthcare crisis, they should blame the "greatest generation".  The laws and policies that set these problems in motion began with the Reagan administration. 
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: fattest_foot on August 16, 2019, 08:48:54 AM
Let’s not forget that many (most?) boomers got jobs with pensions. Hell, my grandmother went back to work at a Kraft factory slicing cheese after she raised her six children. She got a pension with that job AND it included lifetime medical benefits! How many people of any generation have that kind of compensation now?

Pensions never went above 50% of the population. I think the high was only around 40% of people were ever eligible for one.

They were also only ever a thing for about 2 generations (maybe 3). Prior to that, retirement as a concept wasn't really a thing outside the aristocracy.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Not There Yet on August 16, 2019, 09:17:05 AM
Quote
Didn't most people make a big deal about the inheritances they were getting back in the 80's and 90's?

I don't know anyone who inherited anything in the 80's and 90's.  As for myself, the inheritance from my greatest generation parents is in a trust that goes to the millennial grandchildren, skipping my (boomer) generation.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: lookingforadelorean on August 16, 2019, 09:27:02 AM
My point in bringing up pensions was to provide an example of how the overall economic picture has changed for millennials. I’m not blaming lack of pensions for their student debt, but I do think it could be considered one of the contributing factors when it comes to millennials or Gen Z (or even Gen X) having a harder time reaching the financial stability of previous generations. They can pull themselves up by the bootstraps, but they’re still walking into a completely different landscape.

https://money.cnn.com/retirement/guide/pensions_basics.moneymag/index7.htm

“The percentage of workers in the private sector whose only retirement account is a defined benefit pension plan is now 4%, down from 60% in the early 1980s. About 14% of companies offer a combination of both types.”
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: dcheesi on August 16, 2019, 09:51:40 AM
Part of the problem is that enough things change between generations that the roadmap kids are brought up with is no longer reliable. To some degree Millenials got blindsided by the student loan issue, in large part because their own parents were encouraging a mindset that made sense for their own generation, without fully considering the changing educational landscape.

By contrast, my gf's daughters are just starting college, and by all accounts they and their generation are far savvier about college costs and the value of different degrees. It seems they've learned from the example of the Millenials. But I worry that they'll inevitably get caught out by some other socioeconomic change, one that's already underway but that we've so far failed to identify.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: partdopy on August 16, 2019, 10:25:10 AM
I think anyone can cherry pick anecdotal evidence to support their side of the argument. But when you consider the overall economic picture, it’s easy to see why current students feel disadvantaged. Also from that article:

Since 1987 when adjusting for inflation, the % increase in:

➡️ Tuition costs at public universities : 183%
➡️ Tuition costs at private universities: 142%
➡️ Minimum wage: 20%
➡️ Early career salaries: 3%

Let’s not forget that many (most?) boomers got jobs with pensions. Hell, my grandmother went back to work at a Kraft factory slicing cheese after she raised her six children. She got a pension with that job AND it included lifetime medical benefits! How many people of any generation have that kind of compensation now?

Your numbers simply show a market propped up by a vast increase in customers and easy financing, in many cases for degrees that shouldn't be gotten at all.

Is the University responsible for telling a student their degree is not likely to be worthwhile, or to persuade them not to take a loan?  No, the student is responsible to research these things.

If people were not able to get loans with any type of tax payer guarantee, and instead forced to self fund or get private loans, there wouldn't be such a huge increase in tuition or number of students.  Students would have to pick degrees that the financier thought would be able to pay back the loan amount, and show aptitude in that area indicative of the ability to actually excel.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: FIRE47 on August 16, 2019, 12:02:03 PM
I think anyone can cherry pick anecdotal evidence to support their side of the argument. But when you consider the overall economic picture, it’s easy to see why current students feel disadvantaged. Also from that article:

Since 1987 when adjusting for inflation, the % increase in:

➡️ Tuition costs at public universities : 183%
➡️ Tuition costs at private universities: 142%
➡️ Minimum wage: 20%
➡️ Early career salaries: 3%

Let’s not forget that many (most?) boomers got jobs with pensions. Hell, my grandmother went back to work at a Kraft factory slicing cheese after she raised her six children. She got a pension with that job AND it included lifetime medical benefits! How many people of any generation have that kind of compensation now?

Your numbers simply show a market propped up by a vast increase in customers and easy financing, in many cases for degrees that shouldn't be gotten at all.

Is the University responsible for telling a student their degree is not likely to be worthwhile, or to persuade them not to take a loan?  No, the student is responsible to research these things.

If people were not able to get loans with any type of tax payer guarantee, and instead forced to self fund or get private loans, there wouldn't be such a huge increase in tuition or number of students.  Students would have to pick degrees that the financier thought would be able to pay back the loan amount, and show aptitude in that area indicative of the ability to actually excel.

Now what though? Even the kid taking something “worthwhile” is facing the increased costs. You think the institutions would survive if the rug was suddenly pulled out?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 16, 2019, 01:24:51 PM
In addition to tuition inflation, I'd also lay this problem at the feet of the yawning delta of responsibility between high school and post sec.  You go from virtually no responsibility, and worrying about next week's coursework, to having your future in your hands and easy access to piles of your own future earnings.  So it's not surprising many students leave post sec feeling ripped off. 

Better financial education should occur earlier, and I believe this is the responsibility of the parents.  (Public education already dispenses far more knowledge than gets recieved).
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: mm1970 on August 16, 2019, 02:17:55 PM
Have I ever been so happy to be Gen X?  Keep ignoring us.

The truth is somewhere in the middle, naturally.

Also, anecdotes:

4 of my boomer siblings are retired.  Two with pensions, two without.

My boomer FIL and 3 of his siblings are retired all with pensions (that's 4 out of 6).  Other 2 sibs not retired, but they won't have pensions.
My boomer BIL is retired with a pension.

My dad retired with a very small pension ($100 a month?)  He lived on <$900/month social security.

Of the four remaining not-retired kids in my family - three of us will not have pensions (including me) and one will (the prison guard).
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: kite on August 16, 2019, 02:21:35 PM
I think anyone can cherry pick anecdotal evidence to support their side of the argument. But when you consider the overall economic picture, it’s easy to see why current students feel disadvantaged. Also from that article:

Since 1987 when adjusting for inflation, the % increase in:

➡️ Tuition costs at public universities : 183%
➡️ Tuition costs at private universities: 142%
➡️ Minimum wage: 20%
➡️ Early career salaries: 3%

Let’s not forget that many (most?) boomers got jobs with pensions. Hell, my grandmother went back to work at a Kraft factory slicing cheese after she raised her six children. She got a pension with that job AND it included lifetime medical benefits! How many people of any generation have that kind of compensation now?

There was never a golden era when most people had fat pensions; it's always been less than half of all jobs. Forty years ago, only 38% of jobs had defined benefit plans.  Today, it's half that number -- largely public sector unions.  The payouts from defined benefit plans are not as generous as it would seem, with median private pensions paying around $9K/year. 

Community College tuition rates have not increased at those rates.  And 17 states offer free tuition to community college students.  If families just said no to paying the inflated prices at state and private universities, the schools would have to lower the price.  But the availability of limitless amounts of loans has obfuscated the costs that families agree to pay. 
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: YttriumNitrate on August 16, 2019, 02:37:26 PM
In case anyone anyone missed it, the twitterer who posted
Quote
I graduated from law school 6 years ago with $250,000 of student loan debt. But after years of hard work and tens of thousands of dollars of payments, I can officially say that I now owe $315,000.Hooray!
also writes a blog called Optimize Your Life. (optimizeyourlife.co) He's a public sector attorney on track for PSLF. (http://www.optimizeyourlife.co/bonus-the-student-loan-tweet-responses).

The author of the article probably should have spent a few minutes checking their sources.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 17, 2019, 07:41:24 PM
I was with you until the Snapchat comment - settle down grandpa.

The truth is somewhere in the middle - things are different now but really not that bad compared to most generations in human history. Just worse than the last couple by the few measures relating to student loans. 30k in debt isn’t a life sentence but it sure is worse than none.

One of my wife's interns tried to submit their paperwork at work by Snapchat, she told them that it was unacceptable and they would have to submit it in a permanent way by e-mail and they cried to her supervisor about it. Like a baby. The intern was smacked down by the boss for their wimpy ways as well. No sympathy.

Probably about 99.99% of all of these so-called important lifestyle apps are complete bullshit and add nothing to anybody's lives. Meanwhile, all the hipster Silicon Valley angel investors pour their money into this nonsense. Remember when someone paid $1 million for an app that only sent the word "yo". It's almost as bad as back in 2000 when half the superbowl commercials were for fake ibusinesses that didn't actually sell any products.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Paul der Krake on August 18, 2019, 12:45:44 AM
One of my wife's interns tried to submit their paperwork at work by Snapchat, she told them that it was unacceptable and they would have to submit it in a permanent way by e-mail and they cried to her supervisor about it. Like a baby. The intern was smacked down by the boss for their wimpy ways as well. No sympathy.
The only takeaway here is that your wife's company hires low-quality interns. Good students have multiple internship offers from desirable companies and pick the best.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: FIRE47 on August 18, 2019, 05:55:58 AM
I was with you until the Snapchat comment - settle down grandpa.

The truth is somewhere in the middle - things are different now but really not that bad compared to most generations in human history. Just worse than the last couple by the few measures relating to student loans. 30k in debt isn’t a life sentence but it sure is worse than none.

One of my wife's interns tried to submit their paperwork at work by Snapchat, she told them that it was unacceptable and they would have to submit it in a permanent way by e-mail and they cried to her supervisor about it. Like a baby. The intern was smacked down by the boss for their wimpy ways as well. No sympathy.

Probably about 99.99% of all of these so-called important lifestyle apps are complete bullshit and add nothing to anybody's lives. Meanwhile, all the hipster Silicon Valley angel investors pour their money into this nonsense. Remember when someone paid $1 million for an app that only sent the word "yo". It's almost as bad as back in 2000 when half the superbowl commercials were for fake ibusinesses that didn't actually sell any products.

I don't really care to argue the merits of snapchat or one seemingly very foolish person at your wife's work, that wasn't the point of my comment. I just don't like broad generalizations of an entire generation.

I don't buy into any if those apps either, and I'm not sure on the merits of any of these products or how healthy they are for young people but if people buy/download and use them I guess there is someone exercising their capitalist right.





Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 18, 2019, 08:05:15 AM
I was with you until the Snapchat comment - settle down grandpa.

The truth is somewhere in the middle - things are different now but really not that bad compared to most generations in human history. Just worse than the last couple by the few measures relating to student loans. 30k in debt isn’t a life sentence but it sure is worse than none.

One of my wife's interns tried to submit their paperwork at work by Snapchat, she told them that it was unacceptable and they would have to submit it in a permanent way by e-mail and they cried to her supervisor about it. Like a baby. The intern was smacked down by the boss for their wimpy ways as well. No sympathy.

Probably about 99.99% of all of these so-called important lifestyle apps are complete bullshit and add nothing to anybody's lives. Meanwhile, all the hipster Silicon Valley angel investors pour their money into this nonsense. Remember when someone paid $1 million for an app that only sent the word "yo". It's almost as bad as back in 2000 when half the superbowl commercials were for fake ibusinesses that didn't actually sell any products.

I don't really care to argue the merits of snapchat or one seemingly very foolish person at your wife's work, that wasn't the point of my comment. I just don't like broad generalizations of an entire generation.

I don't buy into any if those apps either, and I'm not sure on the merits of any of these products or how healthy they are for young people but if people buy/download and use them I guess there is someone exercising their capitalist right.

Yes, their capitalist right to be a dumbass and I'm exercising my 1st amendment right to mock them for being a dumbass. Rights for everybody! Hooray!
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Just Joe on August 20, 2019, 05:04:58 PM
So is email actually harder to use than Snapchat plus going through the trouble to make yourself look like a fool to your supervisor by crying and complaining about following directions? This is on the same level as a 9 year old being told to pick up their shoes and put them in the closet.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 20, 2019, 06:17:38 PM
So is email actually harder to use than Snapchat plus going through the trouble to make yourself look like a fool to your supervisor by crying and complaining about following directions? This is on the same level as a 9 year old being told to pick up their shoes and put them in the closet.
It should be no wonder that student loans are a problem.  Adult children that grew up in an insular, risk-free environment are at a great disadvantage when the training wheels are forced off.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Goldielocks on August 21, 2019, 12:06:22 PM
@WhiteTrashCash  --  You seem like a very "eyes wide open" sort of guy, at least about the realities of finances and debt.

How were you able to accumulate $74k in student loans?   I know that your family was unlikely to be co-signers and this exceeds the federal limits, doesn't it?

Can you break it down?   I just helped my daughter apply for her first (government) student loan, and I can't figure out how students with no income / credit manage to borrow more.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: therethere on August 21, 2019, 12:15:01 PM
There's private student loans to cover the rest. I took out nearly 40k in private student loans on top of federal loans. So did my DH. At least when I went to school it was really easy to get however much money you wanted. Parents are used as cosigners. I made it a high priority to refinance them and remove them as cosigners once I had a salaried job.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 21, 2019, 02:07:03 PM
@WhiteTrashCash  --  You seem like a very "eyes wide open" sort of guy, at least about the realities of finances and debt.

How were you able to accumulate $74k in student loans?   I know that your family was unlikely to be co-signers and this exceeds the federal limits, doesn't it?

Can you break it down?   I just helped my daughter apply for her first (government) student loan, and I can't figure out how students with no income / credit manage to borrow more.

I had to take out both subsidized and unsubsidized loans for both my undergraduate and graduate programs. The price tag was actually much higher than $74,000 for the four years of undergrad and two years of grad school I completed, but I was able to pay for some of the amount with a work study program. (I worked in the campus library.) Obviously, I received no help from Parent Loans and my parents refused to co-sign any loans for me. I also had a couple of small private scholarships. The additional certification program I completed a few years ago to retrain for new skills added nothing to the debt because it was covered entirely by a private professional scholarship.

The price tag did increase over time due to the unsubsidized loans, which unfortunately increased the overall repayment amount because I was unable to pay the interest on them while I was in school.

Overall, though, it was completely worth the debt because now my life is pretty good. Before, there was absolutely no hope. Thank God for student loans.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: mathlete on August 21, 2019, 02:23:23 PM
How are boomers screwing their kids?

In the context of this topic? By deprioritizing funding for public higher ed as the job market gets more and more competitive, and instead, asking them to navigate financial waters that they're ill equipped to handle if they want a degree and a shot at competing in that job market.

Is this all the doing of those evil "boomers"? No, certainly not. But the social media posts in the OP are a backlash at the seemingly endless incredulity over why millennials aren't moving out/buying houses/making me grandbabies.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: economista on August 21, 2019, 03:47:50 PM
@WhiteTrashCash  --  You seem like a very "eyes wide open" sort of guy, at least about the realities of finances and debt.

How were you able to accumulate $74k in student loans?   I know that your family was unlikely to be co-signers and this exceeds the federal limits, doesn't it?

Can you break it down?   I just helped my daughter apply for her first (government) student loan, and I can't figure out how students with no income / credit manage to borrow more.

One way to get higher federal loans is to have your parents apply for the parent plus loan and then get denied for it based upon their credit rating. This raises the amount of unsubsidized loans you qualify for by $4000 per year (or at least it was $4000 per year when I wrote my thesis in 2014). Also, the total amount than can be borrowed per year increases year after year, and there isn't a limit for graduate school. I had only federal loans and when I graduated from undergrad I was right around $80,000. Then I went to grad school. However, if I had to do it all again I would, and I would do it all the same way. I consider my education to be worth much more than that and without it I wouldn't have the job I have today.

On a different topic: Something else no one ever seems to consider when this topic comes up is that if you apply credit requirements to borrowers or stop allowing student loans (that one comes up a lot) then you are saying low income students don't have an equal right to higher education and that is fundamentally wrong in my point of view. I come from an extremely low income family that lived below the poverty level. Without student loans I never would've been able to attend college at all. Living at home through school was not an option for me, and I worked 40+ hours a week just to pay rent and living expenses - paying tuition never would've been possible. However, but the government providing loans to me and allowing me to go to college, I now make drastically more than I would've without a college degree and therefore I pay way more in taxes than I every would have. I truly believe higher education should be free (college and tech/trade schools) and yes it would cost taxpayer money, but when the graduates make more money they pay more taxes, which is the part of the equation that always gets ignored by naysayers.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Goldielocks on August 21, 2019, 04:28:17 PM
@WhiteTrashCash  --  You seem like a very "eyes wide open" sort of guy, at least about the realities of finances and debt.

How were you able to accumulate $74k in student loans?   I know that your family was unlikely to be co-signers and this exceeds the federal limits, doesn't it?

Can you break it down?   I just helped my daughter apply for her first (government) student loan, and I can't figure out how students with no income / credit manage to borrow more.

I had to take out both subsidized and unsubsidized loans for both my undergraduate and graduate programs. The price tag was actually much higher than $74,000 for the four years of undergrad and two years of grad school I completed, but I was able to pay for some of the amount with a work study program. (I worked in the campus library.) Obviously, I received no help from Parent Loans and my parents refused to co-sign any loans for me. I also had a couple of small private scholarships. The additional certification program I completed a few years ago to retrain for new skills added nothing to the debt because it was covered entirely by a private professional scholarship.

The price tag did increase over time due to the unsubsidized loans, which unfortunately increased the overall repayment amount because I was unable to pay the interest on them while I was in school.

Overall, though, it was completely worth the debt because now my life is pretty good. Before, there was absolutely no hope. Thank God for student loans.
Thanks!  That makes sense -- incurred the extra debt based on a thoughtful choice re: Debt vs. Masters...

When you were in your final year of undergrad and making that decision -- do you think that your fellow students around you were equally qualified to understand the consequences of more student loan debt?

Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Goldielocks on August 21, 2019, 04:39:35 PM
@WhiteTrashCash  --  You seem like a very "eyes wide open" sort of guy, at least about the realities of finances and debt.

How were you able to accumulate $74k in student loans?   I know that your family was unlikely to be co-signers and this exceeds the federal limits, doesn't it?

Can you break it down?   I just helped my daughter apply for her first (government) student loan, and I can't figure out how students with no income / credit manage to borrow more.

I had only federal loans and when I graduated from undergrad I was right around $80,000.
Yikes!  I just looked up and the current max for federal loans for an undergrad is $57.5k, $45k over the first 4 years, (where parents do not qualify for PLUS loans or the student is independent)....  Did the rules (max) change or how did you get to $80k?

Quote
On a different topic: Something else no one ever seems to consider when this topic comes up is that if you apply credit requirements to borrowers or stop allowing student loans (that one comes up a lot) then you are saying low income students don't have an equal right to higher education and that is fundamentally wrong in my point of view. I come from an extremely low income family that lived below the poverty level. Without student loans I never would've been able to attend college at all. Living at home through school was not an option for me, and I worked 40+ hours a week just to pay rent and living expenses - paying tuition never would've been possible. However, but the government providing loans to me and allowing me to go to college, I now make drastically more than I would've without a college degree and therefore I pay way more in taxes than I every would have. I truly believe higher education should be free (college and tech/trade schools) and yes it would cost taxpayer money, but when the graduates make more money they pay more taxes, which is the part of the equation that always gets ignored by naysayers.

You have a point here, but there is a LOT of scholarship money and subsidy available for students in this position.  There is the option to work for a couple of years, taking part time community college first, to keep the total loan amount down. 

As you indicate, your work barely covered your living expenses...which is totally fair. So wouldn't $12,500/yr in loans cover most in-state tuition costs for an undergrad?   Especially if you qualify for subsidies based on low family income like you say, for the more expensive schools...  ?  I am not saying it is perfect, but I think it is possible to find a way in the current set up.

I will cop to a bias - I am not neutral -- I do believe that many school degrees are too expensive for the return that a person gets, and are actually a luxury item.  And yep, that means that universal access to a more expensive degree is not in my core set of beliefs.   I do think that everyone should have access to fund an undergrad degree.... but that may be one taken at an average college, e.g. $10k/yr tuition or less.

https://trends.collegeboard.org/college-pricing/figures-tables/2018-19-state-tuition-and-fees-public-four-year-institutions-state-and-five-year-percentage (https://trends.collegeboard.org/college-pricing/figures-tables/2018-19-state-tuition-and-fees-public-four-year-institutions-state-and-five-year-percentage)
(Be happy if you are not on the East Coast!)
   
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: economista on August 21, 2019, 05:57:33 PM
@Goldielocks - I was mistaken - when I went back and looked I had $80k after grad school, but then when the interest on the unsubsidized loans was added in I ended up over $100k - in my mind I kept thinking $80k undergrad and $100k grad school. Although the compounded interest on the maximum that could be taken out probably would’ve put me close to $80k with undergrad alone.

This is such a complicated topic and not all students fall into the general “mold” or statistics. I have my own experience, the experiences of those I know, and the extensive research I have done while in grad school and since then (I studied income inequality, social mobility, and access to higher education). Also - I’m typing this on my iPad so please ignore any typos or formatting issues - it’s hard to preview and edit on here.

In my case I graduated from high school with a 4.0 and the highest ACT score my school had seen in several years. I know that is the case because the guidance counselor called me into his office to go over my scores and told me that was the case. In our school VERY few students went on to college and the teachers were all pushing students to go to a local vocational/tech school or community college. I mentioned to the guidance counselor that I was thinking about doing community college for 2 years then transferring to the state school and he told me that I would be bored out of my mind at the community college and that I was the type of person who needed to be challenged, so he encouraged me to go to the state school right away. That is what I did and for the first semester I lived at home but then my dad took a better job far away and I was on my own to figure out housing and how to live on my own.

At the state school I got the maximum scholarships but the only “free rides” were for athletes. It was a HUGE school where I didn’t get to personally know my professors and the classes were really easy for me. I also worked full time 48 hours a week at a local factory where the overtime was mandatory. At this large state school it usually took students 5-6 years to graduate because it was damn near impossible to get into the classes you needed in the semesters you needed to take them. Due to not getting my classes I needed to be in, I took 2 senior level classes at the beginning of my sophomore year and those classes changed my life. Both professors, separately and unbeknownst to each other, called me into the offices toward the end of the semester and I thought I was in trouble - no other professors had even known I existed before now. In both cases I had written the best term paper of the class so they looked me up, saw that I was an incoming sophomore, and were impressed. They talked to me and found out that I had a 4.0 while working over 40 hours a week and they both gave me the same piece of advice - I needed to get out of that school and go to a more rigorous school where I would be challenged more. One of the professors told me that I was holding myself back by being at that school and that I had to promise him I would investigate other schools.

I wanted to move to Colorado so I investigated schools in Colorado and I decided that I wanted to go to the best program for economics I could get into, and I didn’t care if it was a public or private school, I just wanted to go to the most rigorous, best school I could possibly get into. I ended up at a private school where the tuition was over $50k per year, excluding room and board. They only offered need based scholarships and I received their maximum need-based scholarship, but it was only $35k per year. This school had enrollment levels drastically lower than the state school I had attended, and my ACT score was closer to their average than the state school, where it had been 10-15 points higher. I was challenged. I got 2 Bs and a C my first quarter  mostly from switching to the rigors of a quarter system when I was used to semesters. I also got to know my professors in a way that I never had before. Our classes were much smaller and I truly believe I got a fuller, deeper education because of it.

I chose to stay at that school for grad school and I got a TA position which covered 75% of my tuition and provided me with a stipend. It was luxurious. I was constantly challenged and I’ve never worked so hard in my life. I continued to work outside of the TA position, but I flourished under the hard work. I received the award for the top graduate student in the economics department and I was featured in the university’s magazine as their “student spotlight” for my research. At one point I had a minor panic attack about finding a good job and continuing to pay for school and living expenses and the professor I was talking to told me not to worry. He said that I had impressed him beyond any student before and that for the rest of my life I never needed to worry about having a good job. He would pull any strings necessary and call in any favors possible to make sure I was always employed. I still keep in touch with all of my professors from the economics department. If I had stayed at the state school, I definitely don’t think that would be the case.

So yes, I could’ve done all of this a lot cheaper. I could’ve gone to the community college and passed my classes easily, possibly without loans. I could’ve stayed at the state school and hopefully graduated in 4 years with less loans, but I doubt I would’ve had anyone encouraging me to go to grad school and become an economist. I definitely wouldn’t have made the connections that I have, or have the job that I have today.

On another note, there is one thing I regret - while doing my graduate research I learned about “high-achieving low-income students” which is a category I would’ve fit in. I learned that these students get free tuition at nearly every Ivy League school, and if I had applied to Harvard, Yale, Princeton, etc I would’ve almost certainly got in with a full ride. No one had ever told me that. It was never mentioned to me by my guidance counselor and it’s not something I learned about on my own. My mom didn’t even graduate from high school and I was totally on my own when it came to going to college. I paid for my application fee, I filled out my applications, and I filled out my own FAFSA (after begging my parents for their tax returns every damn year with them arguing about how they didn’t understand why I needed them since I was an adult). Going to college wasn’t even a discussion with them, they never talked to me about any of it, they never asked me questions about it.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: economista on August 21, 2019, 06:10:17 PM
... I cut off the end of my thought....

I was entirely on my own to figure out the college process, how to apply, how to pay for it, etc. I am extremely lucky that I have a high IQ and I am a very self-motivated, high-achieving person. I am outside the average in many ways so I completely understand that while I figured it all out and did it on my own, a lot of other people struggle and wouldn’t be as successful at it as I am. I also have a job where I can make my loan payments and I’m ok, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t have compassion for the people who have a harder time with it. I have degrees in economics and math and a master’s degree in economics. I could work on Wall Street if I wanted to or for a big financial firm and work a ridiculous number of hours for an extremely high salary, and I could pay off my loans in a few years. Instead I chose to have a better work life balance so I work for the federal government  and I made a LOT less than I could in the financial sector. I am enrolled in public service loan forgiveness and an income-based payment plan where I pay $1000 per month on my loans and in another 4 years the balance will be forgiven. I do NOT feel like I am stealing from the tax payers or not upholding my promise to pay back the loans. I am providing benefit to the taxpayers by being a high performer at my agency and working hard at my job. I also make enough money to buy a house, pay $1000 per month on my loans, and allow my husband to be a stay at home dad while still saving. That would not be the case without the education I received.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Goldielocks on August 22, 2019, 01:25:30 AM
^^ Thanks for the update!  I understand what you are saying, especially about the high school student not always getting all the info they need or people support to make fully informed decisions.   


I was especially interested in the question about the total loans after undergrad, simply because my daughter is starting 3rd year, and there are no other loans that she can get without a co-signer beyond the federal  / govt ones.   That means that she does not have a lot of choices on where to study and if I had not presaved for her, she would have had to work for a couple of years if she wanted (or had to ) live away from home.

FWIW, I absolutely believe in the right of a 22 year old to make decisions that are a big mistake....  BUT 20 and unders should have a  little help from adults close to them to navigate.

Aside :I think we made opposite choices at similar branching points -- e.g., I was very focused on being able to graduate without loans and into a career that paid well after 4 years...   This made me choose a local undergrad where I could get a better scholarship and not the one I really wanted, and a program that could be done in 4 years because it was all "track" based (preset cohort schedules) as I had heard nightmares about getting courses for other degrees, which sucks!!.   Although I had worked up to 32hr/wk in high school, I chose not to work at university in order to graduate faster., taking 7 courses a term, with labs.  I was asked by my professor to join his funded research as a Master's student, (only a couple of competitive openings a year)  and declined, only choosing to get a masters 6 years after graduating.. one that I could work while completing, and choosing cheaper and easier version over prestigious school.....  I chose the super long stressful work hours to make bigger dollars early, and then burnt out and now am mostly FIRED.    Yet all valid intelligent choices for both of us, we are now both on MMM and both enjoying our current lives.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Scandium on August 22, 2019, 08:06:05 AM
I know the US education system has issues, but I don't quite understand this so-called "student loan crisis". I'll have to dig it back up, but I believe the median student loan balance on graduation is something like $25-30k? That simply does not sound like a lot to me, when calculations from e.g. the Economist says college degree (vs HS only) earns you a million dollars more over a career! That's an amazing deal, great ROI! So if a career is 40 years, that means you make $25,000 more per year than you would not having a college degree, you should be able to pay it off in a few years. Or at least it should not be a "crisis".. If you only get a "high school salary" from a college education that costs thousands why would anyone do it? The market should shut that down. Either the price would be lowered, or nobody would study there. I don't understand how that could continue.

I wasn't very smart in high school, but knew to have some sense of the earnings potential of the jobs I looked at. I didn't do the best choices and did what I wanted and took out more loans than most, at least twice that median, and my parents helped out, but with a MSc in Civil engineering I got a starting salary of almost $70k (and that was over 10 years ago now). Loans weren't really an issue.

So; if you have to borrow $50k+ to earn $25k; don't do it. If you have to borrow $150k to become a lawyer making $200k+ within a few years; well then you'll be ok and I don't really feel sorry for you. This should all sort itself out.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: mathlete on August 22, 2019, 09:00:16 AM
I know the US education system has issues, but I don't quite understand this so-called "student loan crisis". I'll have to dig it back up, but I believe the median student loan balance on graduation is something like $25-30k? That simply does not sound like a lot to me, when calculations from e.g. the Economist says college degree (vs HS only) earns you a million dollars more over a career! That's an amazing deal, great ROI! So if a career is 40 years, that means you make $25,000 more per year than you would not having a college degree, you should be able to pay it off in a few years. Or at least it should not be a "crisis".. If you only get a "high school salary" from a college education that costs thousands why would anyone do it? The market should shut that down. Either the price would be lowered, or nobody would study there. I don't understand how that could continue.

I wasn't very smart in high school, but knew to have some sense of the earnings potential of the jobs I looked at. I didn't do the best choices and did what I wanted and took out more loans than most, at least twice that median, and my parents helped out, but with a MSc in Civil engineering I got a starting salary of almost $70k (and that was over 10 years ago now). Loans weren't really an issue.

So; if you have to borrow $50k+ to earn $25k; don't do it. If you have to borrow $150k to become a lawyer making $200k+ within a few years; well then you'll be ok and I don't really feel sorry for you. This should all sort itself out.

No one makes the decision to borrow money thinking this will be what happens. Replace a college degree with starting a business.

"Why would anyone borrow money to start a business that didn't make money?"

Well if you knew that ahead of time, of course, don't borrow the money. But there's uncertainty in everything. And we provide ways for people to navigate around being crushed by business debt, because it's a good think to make capital available for people who want to start businesses. Sometimes, it doesn't work, and people (business owners, investors, lenders) lose money. But you don't want it to be so punitive that nobody starts businesses unless they're already rich.

It's the same thing with education. Sometimes you study something you think will be worthwhile, but it doesn't pan out and you end up underemployed. Is servicing $25K of student loan debt on a less than stellar salary the worst thing in the world? No, but it's probably a drag on the economy. It would be better if those people were buying homes or having kids instead of servicing debt and pushing family plans off to the future.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 22, 2019, 09:08:41 AM
I know the US education system has issues, but I don't quite understand this so-called "student loan crisis". I'll have to dig it back up, but I believe the median student loan balance on graduation is something like $25-30k? That simply does not sound like a lot to me, when calculations from e.g. the Economist says college degree (vs HS only) earns you a million dollars more over a career! That's an amazing deal, great ROI! So if a career is 40 years, that means you make $25,000 more per year than you would not having a college degree, you should be able to pay it off in a few years. Or at least it should not be a "crisis".. If you only get a "high school salary" from a college education that costs thousands why would anyone do it? The market should shut that down. Either the price would be lowered, or nobody would study there. I don't understand how that could continue.

I wasn't very smart in high school, but knew to have some sense of the earnings potential of the jobs I looked at. I didn't do the best choices and did what I wanted and took out more loans than most, at least twice that median, and my parents helped out, but with a MSc in Civil engineering I got a starting salary of almost $70k (and that was over 10 years ago now). Loans weren't really an issue.

So; if you have to borrow $50k+ to earn $25k; don't do it. If you have to borrow $150k to become a lawyer making $200k+ within a few years; well then you'll be ok and I don't really feel sorry for you. This should all sort itself out.

The people crying about $30,000 in student loans don't have any issue with paying $35,000 to buy a brand new car. Just don't buy the car and pay your student loans. Problem solved.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: TheGrimSqueaker on August 22, 2019, 09:36:29 AM
I know the US education system has issues, but I don't quite understand this so-called "student loan crisis". I'll have to dig it back up, but I believe the median student loan balance on graduation is something like $25-30k? That simply does not sound like a lot to me, when calculations from e.g. the Economist says college degree (vs HS only) earns you a million dollars more over a career! That's an amazing deal, great ROI! So if a career is 40 years, that means you make $25,000 more per year than you would not having a college degree, you should be able to pay it off in a few years. Or at least it should not be a "crisis".. If you only get a "high school salary" from a college education that costs thousands why would anyone do it? The market should shut that down. Either the price would be lowered, or nobody would study there. I don't understand how that could continue.

I wasn't very smart in high school, but knew to have some sense of the earnings potential of the jobs I looked at. I didn't do the best choices and did what I wanted and took out more loans than most, at least twice that median, and my parents helped out, but with a MSc in Civil engineering I got a starting salary of almost $70k (and that was over 10 years ago now). Loans weren't really an issue.

So; if you have to borrow $50k+ to earn $25k; don't do it. If you have to borrow $150k to become a lawyer making $200k+ within a few years; well then you'll be ok and I don't really feel sorry for you. This should all sort itself out.

This is one thing borrowers do need to be told: the loans do have to be repaid. Society does need writers, dancers, and experts in early childhood education however very few can earn a living income in those fields. Sometimes the market is either very competitive and littered with people who are trying or failing... and sometimes the profession is female-dominated and therefore highly regulated or else the pay is extremely low. Therefore, the only time a person should consider an education targeted at those professions is if their family is wealthy enough to pay for it, or if they are "trust fund babies", or if they can swing it out of cash flow with scholarships, or if they are logistically prepared for the difficulties of starting out in life saddled with major debt, or if they are willing to make a living in an area that doesn't involve the profession they're training for. The first three "ifs" generally don't involve taking out student loans in the first place.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Scandium on August 22, 2019, 10:01:27 AM
No one makes the decision to borrow money thinking this will be what happens. Replace a college degree with starting a business.

"Why would anyone borrow money to start a business that didn't make money?"

Well if you knew that ahead of time, of course, don't borrow the money. But there's uncertainty in everything. And we provide ways for people to navigate around being crushed by business debt, because it's a good think to make capital available for people who want to start businesses. Sometimes, it doesn't work, and people (business owners, investors, lenders) lose money. But you don't want it to be so punitive that nobody starts businesses unless they're already rich.

It's the same thing with education. Sometimes you study something you think will be worthwhile, but it doesn't pan out and you end up underemployed. Is servicing $25K of student loan debt on a less than stellar salary the worst thing in the world? No, but it's probably a drag on the economy. It would be better if those people were buying homes or having kids instead of servicing debt and pushing family plans off to the future.

I don't buy this analogy. Starting a new business is much more uncertain then a college/career. There is plenty of data on earnings of different fields, locations, based on experience level etc etc. I get a salary study from my industry organization every year. How many people with a certain education work in their field, vs say barista, is also published. This data is out there for anyone to look at. And anyone considering college should, why would you not?!

Yes there can be outliers or special events that throw this off, but one can have a pretty good idea what one will earn with job X in location Y. This is not a mystery.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Just Joe on August 26, 2019, 04:19:44 PM
Honestly, the big problem is that you hear the most about exceptional cases in the media (ex., $150,000 for a Masters in English!) which distracts from the real problem of rent being too high and and salaries being stagnate for the past two decades.

I often wonder about these articles. Are they just trying to generate clicks or are they making smoke and mirrors to hide what you detailed - stagnate salaries.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Travis on August 26, 2019, 06:19:00 PM
Honestly, the big problem is that you hear the most about exceptional cases in the media (ex., $150,000 for a Masters in English!) which distracts from the real problem of rent being too high and and salaries being stagnate for the past two decades.

I often wonder about these articles. Are they just trying to generate clicks or are they making smoke and mirrors to hide what you detailed - stagnate salaries.

When you focus on the unique case of a six-figure debt for a Bachelor's degree you can focus your ire on the university and the bank.  The author can also frame the discussion to make it look like that case is the norm.  Expanding the discussion to wages and housing means you have to blame whole industries, local and state governments, and business owners large and small.  Nobody wants to read an article that says they might be part of the problem.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Goldielocks on August 27, 2019, 01:53:08 AM
Statistics2015 reported here that for the 50% of graduating students with student loans, the average loan value was around $25k, and that the majority paid off their student loans within 3 years.  (Yay!  That high interest incentive to pay off is working, I am thinking). 

Student loans for undergrad are harder to get here than in the USA, which may account for the fact that only 50% of students have them.   Or that more people live at home for a year or two if they can.

 The average price for room and board and basic living and tuition for undergrad is assumed to be around $23k per year.   The USA in-state is only about $5k higher.... so the costs are not completely divergent.

I have seen quite a few news reports on the mega student loans, and often the individual just ignored the loan for too long (because they could not pay,  often valid reasons, and they did nothing, and maybe should have started IBR or something).   This is certainly human nature when we are overwhelmed.  Anyway, loans balloon to 3x their original values fairly quickly this way.   Plus of course the out of state extreme tuition pricing and hamstring-cutting blow for people who do not graduate at all.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 27, 2019, 06:19:58 AM
I think if you are smart enough to get into university you ought to be smart enough to do a cost/benefit evaluation regarding student loans. Isn't that what the whole "critical thinking" thing is all about?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Travis on August 27, 2019, 06:54:28 AM
I think if you are smart enough to get into university you ought to be smart enough to do a cost/benefit evaluation regarding student loans. Isn't that what the whole "critical thinking" thing is all about?

I think you may have an incorrect view of what it takes to qualify for four-year degree programs in the United States.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 27, 2019, 08:06:21 AM
I know the US education system has issues, but I don't quite understand this so-called "student loan crisis". I'll have to dig it back up, but I believe the median student loan balance on graduation is something like $25-30k? That simply does not sound like a lot to me, when calculations from e.g. the Economist says college degree (vs HS only) earns you a million dollars more over a career! That's an amazing deal, great ROI! So if a career is 40 years, that means you make $25,000 more per year than you would not having a college degree, you should be able to pay it off in a few years. Or at least it should not be a "crisis".. If you only get a "high school salary" from a college education that costs thousands why would anyone do it? The market should shut that down. Either the price would be lowered, or nobody would study there. I don't understand how that could continue.
The median is $17k and $25k for holders of a bachelors degree. Graduate degrees are $45k, but that also includes medical students and lawyers, which have always been expensive degrees to get (source (https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/08/13/facts-about-student-loans/)). Those really aren't unreasonable amounts and $25k over ten years is $287.70/month which is manageable, but the average pay between 25 and 34 is  $41,951/year which likely means that graduates right out of school are only making around $35k - 40k, depending upon where they live. Figure they have a take-home pay of 70% of that an you are talking $2,041.67/month to live off of if you make $35k. That's very doable for most people on this site (assume COLA as needed).

However, this is really about student loans plus rent - the average rent in the United States is $1,405/month  (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/u-s-urban-rents-hit-all-time-high-at-average-1405-report/) and the median for a 1br/1ba is typically more than 30% of the gross pay (median rents (https://www.apartmentlist.com/rentonomics/rental-data/)). So really most early graduates in bigger cities are living with roommates, but even then, lets assume the responsible budget-er - 30% of the gross is going to rent ($875/mo), $287.70 to student loans, about 6% for groceries (~$150/mo, no dining out!), ~$150 for utilities (electric, gas, water, etc.), ~$50 for telecommunications (cellphone and internet), and we are already at ~$1500/mo budget without any retirement savings (likely ~5% to get a 401(k) match), or rainy day savings, let along "fun money" since most people are going to want to do some "fun things" in their mid-twenties. At that point the $2,041.67/mo is gone and that student loan payment ate up about 14% of the net take-home pay. So really the "student loan crisis" for most students is the squeeze due to high rents, lower incomes, and the payment meaning that major milestones (e.g., getting married, living without roommates, having kids, saving for a house, etc.) are being put off until their income starts to go up more. Which means that you stare setting people in their early to mid thirties that are just starting to catch up with where people in their mid to late twenties were back in the 1970's through early 1990's.

Honestly, the big problem is that you hear the most about exceptional cases in the media (ex., $150,000 for a Masters in English!) which distracts from the real problem of rent being too high and and salaries being stagnate for the past two decades.

So you quote the average rent as being $1405, but in your very next link the median national rent is listed as $959 for a 1 BR and $1,190 for a 2 BR (the average clearly should not apply for new graduates, and even the median is stretching it). So assuming these people have a roommate in a 2BR, and all of your other assumptions hold (including 401k savings), you now have at least $600 per month in fun money, or well over a quarter of take-home pay. So really, I'm struggling to understand where the difficulty lies here for the majority of people who simply have not yet learned how to budget.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Davnasty on August 27, 2019, 08:34:39 AM
I think if you are smart enough to get into university you ought to be smart enough to do a cost/benefit evaluation regarding student loans. Isn't that what the whole "critical thinking" thing is all about?

I think you may have an incorrect view of what it takes to qualify for four-year degree programs in the United States.

Not to mention intelligence in one area doesn't equate to understanding everything.

Even if it was that simple, these aren't just 18 year olds taking in all the information in an unbiased format and making a decision, they're 18 year olds being told by their parents, advisors, teachers, and the media that college = good choice. Then there's all the adults telling you that college was the best experience of their life, wish they could go back. No idea how many times I heard that one.

So the decision comes down to:

a) Do what all the adults are telling me is a good life decision, live on a campus full of attractive people my own age, be able to walk everywhere, play pickup sports on a whim, get drunk on the weekends in a place where it's not frowned upon and relatively safe to do so, have all kinds of cultural events nearby, easy access to various clubs and groups, etc.
OR
b) Get a 40 hour/week entry level job working with mostly older people and continue living with parents or pay my own rent.

Obviously this doesn't cover all the realities but this is probably an accurate representation of the choice for a lot of high school graduates.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 27, 2019, 04:46:25 PM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 27, 2019, 06:16:53 PM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

I read something a while ago where they said that the American public has now decided that people aren't adults until they are 26. Reality is that people are adults when they turn 18 and are legally responsible for themselves. Maybe we should stop babying young people so much and let them handle their own stuff. They'll make some mistakes along the way, but then they can learn the valuable life lessons that everyone learns when they fix their errors.

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Travis on August 27, 2019, 06:49:10 PM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

Need some context. What privilege are you referring to? 

I'll expand on my previous comment to you.  There are many universities in the US. Countless.  Some of them require a broad and deep resume of high-mark academics, extra-curricular work, letters of recommendation from civic leaders, essays explaining why you're the ideal candidate, and maxed-out standardized test scores.  Other universities simply require average or slightly higher than average academics.  The former may offer a full scholarship paying all expenses, while the latter offers assistance in the form of grants or government-backed loans. 

Society and the business world have been beating into our youth the requirement of a four-year degree.  There are far more requirements in the job market for a four-year degree than there are teenagers who can afford to attain those degrees out of pocket.  The universities increase tuition far in excess of inflation.  There is no limit to the supply of banks and state/federal government programs offering loans to fulfill this demand.  There are no checks, filters, or tests anywhere in the system to determine if the loans paying for the degree program will lead to a career commensurate with the debt incurred.  If wages don't rise at the same rate as tuition, then the loans take up an increasing amount of income.  Most public school students receive only a cursory education on the financial obligations and impacts of accepting such a loan.  The concept of "return on investment" is something they'll read for the first time on a financial blog a decade later.  The banks issuing the loans aren't concerned about ROI either since the loans can't be discharged in bankruptcy and many are insured by the governemnt.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 27, 2019, 07:03:43 PM
Just because people don't know everything they need to doesn't mean taking advantage of them is any more ethical or acceptable.

Blaming people for being caught in a trap is fairly heartless and excuses those who create and set them, often profiting off the length and interest of those loans.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 27, 2019, 07:12:58 PM
Reality is that people are adults when they turn 18 and are legally responsible for themselves.
Well, even in the United States you really haven't reached the legal age of majority in all states until you are 21. Plus, that's the federal drinking age so... you are mostly a legal adult at 18 and are really a legal adult at 21.

Parents are no longer legally required to financially provide for their offspring at the age of 18 and that's the legal age to vote. Drinking and renting a car are privileges that have nothing to do with the legal definition of adulthood. Just because someone behaves in a voluntarily immature way, it doesn't mean that they are still children.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Travis on August 27, 2019, 07:18:04 PM

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.

In retirement I want to spend some time in a high school guidance counselor office just so I can tell them this.  Right now the mantra is "get a degree at all costs."  I won't call somebody stupid for doing what everybody that student considers an authority figure is telling them to do.  Carving 30 minutes out of the mandatory macroeconomics class we all get would solve so many of these problems.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Davnasty on August 27, 2019, 07:19:16 PM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

I said nothing about blaming universities. I was simply refuting your statement

I think if you are smart enough to get into university you ought to be smart enough to do a cost/benefit evaluation regarding student loans.

I don't think one logically follows the other and I explained why. Do you stand by this claim?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 27, 2019, 07:26:27 PM

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.

In retirement I want to spend some time in a high school guidance counselor office just so I can tell them this.  Right now the mantra is "get a degree at all costs."  I won't call somebody stupid for doing what everybody that student considers an authority figure is telling them to do.  Carving 30 minutes out of the mandatory macroeconomics class we all get would solve so many of these problems.

Having worked in schools for close to a decade the notion that 'kids just need ME to inject some reality' is really arrogant and unwise.

Plenty of people in kids' lives give them good advice, that doesn't mean they're listening, or that the advice gets through. To a certain extent you've got to live a little to learn a lot.

In this particular case most debt appears moderate, it's the stagnation of wages, the increases in text books, the added costs of going to school being spread over a longer period with less disposable income that makes a bigger problem.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Travis on August 27, 2019, 07:44:00 PM

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.

In retirement I want to spend some time in a high school guidance counselor office just so I can tell them this.  Right now the mantra is "get a degree at all costs."  I won't call somebody stupid for doing what everybody that student considers an authority figure is telling them to do.  Carving 30 minutes out of the mandatory macroeconomics class we all get would solve so many of these problems.

Having worked in schools for close to a decade the notion that 'kids just need ME to inject some reality' is really arrogant and unwise.

Plenty of people in kids' lives give them good advice, that doesn't mean they're listening, or that the advice gets through. To a certain extent you've got to live a little to learn a lot.

In this particular case most debt appears moderate, it's the stagnation of wages, the increases in text books, the added costs of going to school being spread over a longer period with less disposable income that makes a bigger problem.

Maybe it's my anecdotal experience with public school, but the teachers who could/should have imparted these lessons didn't say a word.  They just stuck to the script which didn't include these matters as part of the curriculum.  My guidance counselor was just there for the paycheck.  Talking to students was the last thing on her mind.  In my hometown the same people are still running the show.  To the comment of yours I bolded, we're discussing an expensive lesson to learn the hard way.  I'd love to be wrong and schools are making an effort to educate students on ROI and alternatives to college/loans, but I just haven't seen it. Maybe it is arrogant to think I can help, but if I can impart some wisdom on an impressionable teenager I think it's worth a try.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 27, 2019, 08:57:12 PM
Perhaps.

I also think that there are definitely teachers who do teach those things but the lessons don't sink in. For example, it's always popular to blame schools for not teaching kids to file taxes, but we do, it's just a really boring thing for most teenagers so it doesn't really sink in. That and, in Australia at least, the system is so simple if you're basically literate you can navigate your income tax legally (though not necessarily optimally), so it's not the sort of thing we're spending a week or two on.

Teenagers are impressionable, that's for sure, but a classroom environment isn't always the best place to have an impactful, specific change.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 27, 2019, 09:51:41 PM
Perhaps.

I also think that there are definitely teachers who do teach those things but the lessons don't sink in. For example, it's always popular to blame schools for not teaching kids to file taxes, but we do, it's just a really boring thing for most teenagers so it doesn't really sink in. That and, in Australia at least, the system is so simple if you're basically literate you can navigate your income tax legally (though not necessarily optimally), so it's not the sort of thing we're spending a week or two on.

Teenagers are impressionable, that's for sure, but a classroom environment isn't always the best place to have an impactful, specific change.

Yeah, I'm pretty sure that people who blame teachers for kids not knowing things have very little experience dealing with children. Teenagers are much more interested in Fortnite and sportsball (and YouTuber influencers) than in learning about personal finance and other life skills. Our local high school has mandatory classes in all that stuff for high school students and they still claim they were never taught any of it. They were taught these skills, but they chose not to pay attention or take it seriously.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 27, 2019, 10:34:32 PM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

I said nothing about blaming universities. I was simply refuting your statement

I think if you are smart enough to get into university you ought to be smart enough to do a cost/benefit evaluation regarding student loans.

I don't think one logically follows the other and I explained why. Do you stand by this claim?

Yeah, I stand by the claim. Sure, there might be a few outlier cases of people with 90 IQs getting into Podunk Community College or something. But then I suspect they wouldn't be racking up $150k in student loan debt either. That's not how the market works. According to this article, https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/12/tuition-at-community-colleges-is-3660-a-year-on-average.html

The average tuition fee at a CC is $3-4k per year. Even if we double that, it's hardly at a crushing level. You could go there for one semester, find out that it's not for you/your career, and then withdraw with a few thousand in debt. Which is about how much the average person has revolving on their credit card anyway.

Student loan debt is only going to be crushing if you go to an institution of some repute. And if you have the means to do that, you also have the means to take a hard look at yourself at some point along the process and evaluate the cost/benefit of the situation. At some stage in life you have to accept personal responsibility for your academic choices.

The other thing is, certainly in my country and I suspect in the U.S. too, there are ways to get your semester fees partly or totally refunded (whether or not you withdraw from the subjects in time) due to genuine hardship, unexpected illness, etc. There are always ways around it. Sure, you need to understand how the system works, but that applies to all areas of life: the smart get ahead. And university is for the smart.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 27, 2019, 11:01:04 PM
Bloop bloop expects a lot of 17 year olds!

Teenagers, developmentally, are defined in part by a lack of perspective, or a growing perspective (depending on how harsh one wants to be). It's certainly a bold claim to suggest that someone who is able to follow instructions, jump through hoops, get buoyed along by their dreams and the naivety should also be able to work out exactly what's going on. University is usually the 2nd system a teenager is exposed to, after the grading/examinations in their final year, so many are very confused and don't have a good picture of what the different branches of a University are and what's available. Combine that complexity, the lack of experience with organisations and a limited perspective and that's not a great recipe for self awareness.

More generally, I find there's a bit of a problem with some of your arguments: people are so easily sold snake oil on social media/so easily influenced (as you've argued in another thread) but they should also be aware and insightful enough to see the future and how it will play out for them? If people are rubes then blaming them is condescending and unhelpful. If people are smart then perhaps we should listen to them.

I'm not sure how to reconcile that, especially for people who - in our country - largely 17 when applying for University, and often younger when hearing and deciding about the options.

I'm not a huge fan of how the system works - in terms of finishing school and moving on to post school options - but it needs to be remembered that very, very few 18 year olds are ready to be independent and NONE have as much power as the workplaces that demand degrees, the court rulings that increase the necessity of training, the University boards that choose numbers, the government regulations that set fees, loans, conditions and student enrollment conditions or the feeling that more school is ok because school is a known known.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 28, 2019, 12:40:21 AM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.

Teenagers lack insight, yes. But we let them drive. We let them select university courses. If they want to do that, they're going to have to deal with the consequences. As I said, it's not like you incur a $150k debt immediately after starting your first week of university.

Some people are easily influenced. They unfortunately are going to live a bad life of unexamined spending. Some people are poor at planning. Some of them (although I suspect not many of them) will end up racking up a 6 figure debt. Despite all that, that doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with "the system". It means only that they have to face responsibility for their own actions.

Particularly when it comes to college/university entrants, who purport to have academic ability, I have very little patience for self-pitying arguments to the contrary.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 28, 2019, 06:10:41 AM
I went to an average high school in a small city, and even then it was well known that student loans were a risk-reward proposition.  I graduated 06 and went to a community college for a two year music diploma for this reason. 

However, if you aren't risk averse enough, and perhaps your parents are fond of debt, you might not proceed sensibly.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 28, 2019, 07:10:57 AM
Bloop bloop expects a lot of 17 year olds!

Teenagers, developmentally, are defined in part by a lack of perspective, or a growing perspective (depending on how harsh one wants to be). It's certainly a bold claim to suggest that someone who is able to follow instructions, jump through hoops, get buoyed along by their dreams and the naivety should also be able to work out exactly what's going on.

That's really not the claim. The claim is that people should understand, even at that young impressionable age, that debt is bad and should generally be avoided at all costs. Certainly not all of it can be avoided, but then one should be minimizing discretionary spending, living with roommates, working at a part-time job, riding a bike everywhere, etc.

This is basic MMM 101 in my mind. Sure, some people won't get it and will be maxing hedonistic pleasure for all its worth, but I don't see why everyone else should be required to support their unwise choices.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: BTDretire on August 28, 2019, 09:06:29 AM
I don't know where else to post this, it applies, and, I like it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enTEvon9pbw&feature=youtu.be
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: therethere on August 28, 2019, 09:10:58 AM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.

Teenagers lack insight, yes. But we let them drive. We let them select university courses. If they want to do that, they're going to have to deal with the consequences. As I said, it's not like you incur a $150k debt immediately after starting your first week of university.

Some people are easily influenced. They unfortunately are going to live a bad life of unexamined spending. Some people are poor at planning. Some of them (although I suspect not many of them) will end up racking up a 6 figure debt. Despite all that, that doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with "the system". It means only that they have to face responsibility for their own actions.

Particularly when it comes to college/university entrants, who purport to have academic ability, I have very little patience for self-pitying arguments to the contrary.

You ignored the fact that adults are encouraging minors to take on these loans. Or that marketing on TV is constant ads for cars, leases, and home equity loans? Debt is common in the US and easily accepted and marketed. Or that universities purposefully make a lot of credits untransferable so you're stuck for the full 4 years or get loans without a degree? What about the system that is set up with automatic 3-5% tuition increases once you start making it noticeably more expensive at year 4 versus year 1? I could go on and on... I took on loans when I was 17. 17 years later I'm still paying them. I'm fairly confident in saying I did not have enough worldly experience at 17 to determine the enormity of my school decision regarding loans and the certainty/uncertainty of job prospects along with the 1000x other adult things being thrown at me at the time. I relied on adults advising me at the time.

But no, the system isn't broken, it's just the MINORS who didn't plan enough or are too weak. /s
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 28, 2019, 09:26:21 AM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.

Teenagers lack insight, yes. But we let them drive. We let them select university courses. If they want to do that, they're going to have to deal with the consequences. As I said, it's not like you incur a $150k debt immediately after starting your first week of university.

Some people are easily influenced. They unfortunately are going to live a bad life of unexamined spending. Some people are poor at planning. Some of them (although I suspect not many of them) will end up racking up a 6 figure debt. Despite all that, that doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with "the system". It means only that they have to face responsibility for their own actions.

Particularly when it comes to college/university entrants, who purport to have academic ability, I have very little patience for self-pitying arguments to the contrary.

You ignored the fact that adults are encouraging minors to take on these loans. Or that marketing on TV is constant ads for cars, leases, and home equity loans? Debt is common in the US and easily accepted and marketed. Or that universities purposefully make a lot of credits untransferable so you're stuck for the full 4 years or get loans without a degree? What about the system that is set up with automatic 3-5% tuition increases once you start making it noticeably more expensive at year 4 versus year 1? I could go on and on... I took on loans when I was 17. 17 years later I'm still paying them. I'm fairly confident in saying I did not have enough worldly experience at 17 to determine the enormity of my school decision regarding loans and the certainty/uncertainty of job prospects along with the 1000x other adult things being thrown at me at the time. I relied on adults advising me at the time.

But no, the system isn't broken, it's just the MINORS who didn't plan enough or are too weak. /s

Yes, advertising is a really bad thing and Madison Avenue manipulates people into spending all their money, but we now have DVRs, subscription-based non-advertising streaming entertainment platforms, ad-free satellite radio, Ad-Block internet browser plug-ins, etc., so people really don't need to see advertising unless they really desperately want to. I know that the media and corporations like to push the idea that we're all helpless feathers floating on the wind with no choice to the direction of our lives, but that's manipulation to trick young people into not obtaining power and independence.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 28, 2019, 09:39:43 AM
I don't know where else to post this, it applies, and, I like it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enTEvon9pbw&feature=youtu.be

I enjoyed it too. I'm not sure why it's so hard to grasp that most people (trust fund babies excluded) are poor when they enter college, and should live their lives accordingly. And that they really shouldn't be able to spend much discretionarily, since they should be spending their waking hours 1) studying and 2) working to pay their way.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: mm1970 on August 28, 2019, 11:05:21 AM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

I read something a while ago where they said that the American public has now decided that people aren't adults until they are 26. Reality is that people are adults when they turn 18 and are legally responsible for themselves. Maybe we should stop babying young people so much and let them handle their own stuff. They'll make some mistakes along the way, but then they can learn the valuable life lessons that everyone learns when they fix their errors.

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.
It's a combination of things.
You can vote at 18 and join the military.
You cannot drink until 21.
In some cases, you cannot even rent a car before 25.

...And there is a reason for that - we learn new things all the time, and it turns out that the brain isn't fully formed until about 25 or so, which is why dumb kids do dumb things.

That doesn't mean that SOME people aren't adults by 18, or 16, or 20.  I certainly was but I always was kinda shy, boring, and risk averse.

But it does mean that there's actual science behind why people have adjusted their expectations of 20-somethings.

(Similarly, science shows us that it's safer for babies and toddlers to be rear facing past age 2.  And science shows us that it is not until age 10 that MOST children are safely able to cross a street by themselves.)
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: saguaro on August 28, 2019, 11:54:56 AM
You ignored the fact that adults are encouraging minors to take on these loans. Or that marketing on TV is constant ads for cars, leases, and home equity loans? Debt is common in the US and easily accepted and marketed. Or that universities purposefully make a lot of credits untransferable so you're stuck for the full 4 years or get loans without a degree? What about the system that is set up with automatic 3-5% tuition increases once you start making it noticeably more expensive at year 4 versus year 1? I could go on and on...

I could touch on all these points re: college.   My college's financial office (and I know it's by no means the only one) pretty much had the attitude of "just take a loan" even when told I was working during the school year to help pay my way, because I should be "focusing on my education and not working", wtf.  I remember being shocked how just they were just so nonchalant about it and that the idea of someone trying to pay their way without debt when they didn't have parents who could provide a full ride, seemed almost silly to them as opposed to being responsible. 

I managed to get through college without taking on any loans, but just barely.  I was looking at taking out a loan to help pay for tuition in my senior year because of the tuition hikes that were outpacing my raises at my job.    I didn't but what saved me was that a transferred credit reduced my course load in my final semester, which might have been a fluke given the college was terrible at accepting credits or not giving full credit on transferred ones.  They gave me something like 7/8 of a credit for two core classes taken while in high school, classes that would have allowed me to graduate a semester earlier if fully accepted. 

Getting a loan was my last resort but it was on the table if that is what it took to finish, just wanted to minimize what debt I would have upon graduation, if I couldn't avoid it.  I lived at home, rode my bike to school, except in the winters, I worked part-time during the school year and full-time during the summers and breaks.   
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: TheGrimSqueaker on August 28, 2019, 12:03:29 PM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

I read something a while ago where they said that the American public has now decided that people aren't adults until they are 26. Reality is that people are adults when they turn 18 and are legally responsible for themselves. Maybe we should stop babying young people so much and let them handle their own stuff. They'll make some mistakes along the way, but then they can learn the valuable life lessons that everyone learns when they fix their errors.

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.
It's a combination of things.
You can vote at 18 and join the military.
You cannot drink until 21.
In some cases, you cannot even rent a car before 25.

...And there is a reason for that - we learn new things all the time, and it turns out that the brain isn't fully formed until about 25 or so, which is why dumb kids do dumb things.

That doesn't mean that SOME people aren't adults by 18, or 16, or 20.  I certainly was but I always was kinda shy, boring, and risk averse.

But it does mean that there's actual science behind why people have adjusted their expectations of 20-somethings.

(Similarly, science shows us that it's safer for babies and toddlers to be rear facing past age 2.  And science shows us that it is not until age 10 that MOST children are safely able to cross a street by themselves.)

If the child in question is raised in a foam-padded world where they don't get street crossing practice, it's reasonable to expect them to fail at this up to age 10. If the kid is raised on a farm and is used to handling livestock and driving tractors at age 10, or if the kid is encouraged to walk to school or to the bus stop, they are fully capable of crossing a street safely by age 5 or 6.

It's becoming increasingly acceptable to excuse stupid, short-sighted behavior because a person's "brain isn't fully developed", and to use that as a justification to deprive people of brain-development exercise (that is to say, decision making) opportunities. To my way of thinking-- and I may be the only human on the planet or at least in the United States who has this opinion-- the solution is to let kids have some low-stakes learning experiences so that their brains develop, instead of trying to communicate everything in a classroom. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they borrow a dollar from a friend or sibling and don't repay it. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they don't do their homework, or when they miss the bus and have to walk three miles to school. This involves allowing the child to become uncomfortable, while ideally stopping short of any serious physical danger.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 28, 2019, 05:56:33 PM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.

How is the world better off by making people suffer?

Quote
Teenagers lack insight, yes. But we let them drive. We let them select university courses. If they want to do that, they're going to have to deal with the consequences. As I said, it's not like you incur a $150k debt immediately after starting your first week of university.

But with driving we make them go through significant training. In Victoria we have the most demanding system for gaining a licence to drive anywhere in the world (last time I checked, it's possible other countries have changed). Driving is also very material: you crash, it's bad. It's actually a great teaching tool for teens because of this. Learn responsibility or you'll hurt. And it's easy to grasp by everyone.

But I digress, that's a tangent. The $150k debt is a bit of a furphy/outlier so it's not really a good case to examine.

You're advocating that individuals should be more informed and therefore able to overcome society's flaws and designs. I'm advocating that society should be less capricious and flawed so that someone doesn't have to rise above to not be taken advantage of and that we should vociferously criticise systems and policies that simultaneously baby and hoodwink kids.

Obviously it's great when individuals rise above the mean, great for them, excellent, lovely. That shouldn't be a pre-requisite of attending the next step in schooling and doing ok. Luckily in Australia it's (usually) not because with HECS the majority of courses are reasonable or, at least, not heinous. We're lucky there and should preserve that.

Quote
Some people are easily influenced. They unfortunately are going to live a bad life of unexamined spending. Some people are poor at planning. Some of them (although I suspect not many of them) will end up racking up a 6 figure debt. Despite all that, that doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with "the system". It means only that they have to face responsibility for their own actions.

I don't know - I think most of us in Australia will hit 6 figure debt due to mortgages, regardless of how informed or otherwise we are. I'd also argue that problem (housing prices) is a systemic flaw.

I don't think you can have a meaningful conversation about tertiary education, prices and choices without acknowledging that the Federal and State governments set those things and manipulate them and that decision making process is a system that's outside of our control and, at times, does break and is flawed.

Quote
Particularly when it comes to college/university entrants, who purport to have academic ability, I have very little patience for self-pitying arguments to the contrary.

I've worked with over a thousand kids heading to University, they aren't this arrogant swashbuckling know it alls you're railing against. They are usually excited, nervous, unsure, naive and inexperienced. But hopeful and looking forward to learning and growing. That's a good place for people to be, and it's an easy place to take advantage of, but we do owe our young people at least a social bargain of not saddling them with decades of financial regret because someone takes advantage of that.

It seems you've got little sympathy for the young, but what about the for profit places who are very happy to oversell, lie, cheat and over-charge? Surely these aren't defensible businesses?

What about all the for profit colleges in Australia who take advantage of international students, lie directly to their faces about job prospects, visas, charge, payments, etc, often illegally, make someone miserable for the years they're involved (or longer) - these are systemic flaws and these are, to my mind, indefensible.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 28, 2019, 06:17:35 PM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.

Teenagers lack insight, yes. But we let them drive. We let them select university courses. If they want to do that, they're going to have to deal with the consequences. As I said, it's not like you incur a $150k debt immediately after starting your first week of university.

Some people are easily influenced. They unfortunately are going to live a bad life of unexamined spending. Some people are poor at planning. Some of them (although I suspect not many of them) will end up racking up a 6 figure debt. Despite all that, that doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with "the system". It means only that they have to face responsibility for their own actions.

Particularly when it comes to college/university entrants, who purport to have academic ability, I have very little patience for self-pitying arguments to the contrary.

You ignored the fact that adults are encouraging minors to take on these loans. Or that marketing on TV is constant ads for cars, leases, and home equity loans? Debt is common in the US and easily accepted and marketed. Or that universities purposefully make a lot of credits untransferable so you're stuck for the full 4 years or get loans without a degree? What about the system that is set up with automatic 3-5% tuition increases once you start making it noticeably more expensive at year 4 versus year 1? I could go on and on... I took on loans when I was 17. 17 years later I'm still paying them. I'm fairly confident in saying I did not have enough worldly experience at 17 to determine the enormity of my school decision regarding loans and the certainty/uncertainty of job prospects along with the 1000x other adult things being thrown at me at the time. I relied on adults advising me at the time.

But no, the system isn't broken, it's just the MINORS who didn't plan enough or are too weak. /s

The only adults encouraging minors to take on these loans are parents. And they should know better - and if they don't, it's a culpable failure of parenting.

The rest of your post draws a long bow. What do "buy now, pay later" advertisements for TV and furniture have to do with enrolling in a 4-year degree? Are you saying that 17 and 18-year-olds who are bright enough to want to go to university (given almost no community colleges come with a debt burden nearly as large) also can't understand the concept of debt and interest rates?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 28, 2019, 06:23:33 PM
LonerMatt - the Australian university system is about as fair as you can get (edit - other than the little colleges that exploit international students. No doubt a rort. But that's a special case.) HECS is incredibly cheap, it's regulated (at least at the undergraduate level) and it bears no interest. So I'm sure you agree that our university system, at least as far as payment goes, is fair.

As for Americans, most of the really expensive universities - the ones where the 6 figure debts come from - are not easy to get into. You have to really try. And most of the time you have to have some ability. If you have that ability, and if you want that sort of standing/privilege (it's not like you're going to rack up a $150k debt, or even $50k, by attending your local community college or low-ranked state university), you have to think it through. No one's taking advantage of the students by springing on them a figure, or terms, that they don't know. The reason they wind up in trouble is because they are irrationally optimistic about their own abilities or about the job market.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 28, 2019, 06:59:10 PM
..and - as you've alluded to - there are shady businesses willing to exploit those rose coloured glasses typical of youth.

Hard to blame a young person for being young in the face of someone operating shady and exploitative businesses.

But to return to a previous point, given wage stagnation the effective cost of the debt rises.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: OtherJen on August 28, 2019, 07:09:43 PM
LonerMatt - the Australian university system is about as fair as you can get (edit - other than the little colleges that exploit international students. No doubt a rort. But that's a special case.) HECS is incredibly cheap, it's regulated (at least at the undergraduate level) and it bears no interest. So I'm sure you agree that our university system, at least as far as payment goes, is fair.

As for Americans, most of the really expensive universities - the ones where the 6 figure debts come from - are not easy to get into. You have to really try. And most of the time you have to have some ability. If you have that ability, and if you want that sort of standing/privilege (it's not like you're going to rack up a $150k debt, or even $50k, by attending your local community college or low-ranked state university), you have to think it through. No one's taking advantage of the students by springing on them a figure, or terms, that they don't know. The reason they wind up in trouble is because they are irrationally optimistic about their own abilities or about the job market.

I have to contradict your statement. Here in SE Michigan USA, in-state tuition rates (i.e., only for established Michigan residents) at the local public universities ranges from $11k to $15k per year (this includes the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and Dearborn, Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University, and Wayne State University). That's a total of $44–60k before books, supplies, course fees, and living expenses.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 29, 2019, 06:59:21 AM
How is the world better off by making people suffer?

I think we have different definitions for the word "suffer". Having to skip some lattes and maybe ride your bike around some more has nothing to do with suffering. It's called life.

Staying out of debt or getting out of debt is not hard, as evidenced by the success stories on this site. But it does require a reframing of one's mental outlook. Forgiveness of debts that these people willingly took on* is foolhardy, because they are not learning the bigger lesson.

*As compared to a debt that arose due to poor fortune (and might be associated with actual suffering), something like a medical emergency combined with out-of-network surgeons or an unforeseeable natural disaster.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: DadJokes on August 29, 2019, 07:20:05 AM
I don't know where else to post this, it applies, and, I like it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enTEvon9pbw&feature=youtu.be

I enjoyed it too. I'm not sure why it's so hard to grasp that most people (trust fund babies excluded) are poor when they enter college, and should live their lives accordingly. And that they really shouldn't be able to spend much discretionarily, since they should be spending their waking hours 1) studying and 2) working to pay their way.

One problem is that kids move out and think they should have the same standard of living they had under their parents' roof. I don't really know how to combat this as a society. Sure, it would be great if schools didn't make children think that college is necessary. It would be great if student loans weren't so easily accessible. It would be great if parents taught their kids to always live on less than they make. Since there doesn't seem to be a societal fix to this, the best we can do is ensure that our own children understand these things.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: therethere on August 29, 2019, 08:50:44 AM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.

Teenagers lack insight, yes. But we let them drive. We let them select university courses. If they want to do that, they're going to have to deal with the consequences. As I said, it's not like you incur a $150k debt immediately after starting your first week of university.

Some people are easily influenced. They unfortunately are going to live a bad life of unexamined spending. Some people are poor at planning. Some of them (although I suspect not many of them) will end up racking up a 6 figure debt. Despite all that, that doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with "the system". It means only that they have to face responsibility for their own actions.

Particularly when it comes to college/university entrants, who purport to have academic ability, I have very little patience for self-pitying arguments to the contrary.

You ignored the fact that adults are encouraging minors to take on these loans. Or that marketing on TV is constant ads for cars, leases, and home equity loans? Debt is common in the US and easily accepted and marketed. Or that universities purposefully make a lot of credits untransferable so you're stuck for the full 4 years or get loans without a degree? What about the system that is set up with automatic 3-5% tuition increases once you start making it noticeably more expensive at year 4 versus year 1? I could go on and on... I took on loans when I was 17. 17 years later I'm still paying them. I'm fairly confident in saying I did not have enough worldly experience at 17 to determine the enormity of my school decision regarding loans and the certainty/uncertainty of job prospects along with the 1000x other adult things being thrown at me at the time. I relied on adults advising me at the time.

But no, the system isn't broken, it's just the MINORS who didn't plan enough or are too weak. /s

The only adults encouraging minors to take on these loans are parents. And they should know better - and if they don't, it's a culpable failure of parenting.

The rest of your post draws a long bow. What do "buy now, pay later" advertisements for TV and furniture have to do with enrolling in a 4-year degree? Are you saying that 17 and 18-year-olds who are bright enough to want to go to university (given almost no community colleges come with a debt burden nearly as large) also can't understand the concept of debt and interest rates?

Because you are insinuating that all kids should magically have the insight to know better than to follow societal norms. And the societal norms in the US is capitalism, materialism, and debt. How do you expect a 17 year old to realize it's all BS even though most adults haven't even figured it out yet? 

But you're in Austrailia so I don't expect you to understand.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 29, 2019, 08:53:54 AM
This conversation is getting off-track. Let me help get it back where it needs to be:

1.) Yes, you can pay your student loans.
2.) No, I won't pay your student loans for you.
3.) Yes, you pay your student loans by not buying Starbucks (or takeout or beers at the bar or books at B&N, etc.)
4.) No, the government is not going to change laws to force other people to pay your student loans for you.
5.) Yes, you are going to need to suck it up, buttercup.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Paul der Krake on August 29, 2019, 08:57:03 AM
Because you are insinuating that all kids should magically have the insight to know better than to follow societal norms. And the societal norms in the US is capitalism, materialism, and debt. How do you expect a 17 year old to realize it's all BS even though most adults haven't even figured it out yet? 

But you're in Austrailia so I don't expect you to understand.
You know Australians are basically upside-down Americans with alligators and kangaroos, right?

They're not wearing tweed jackets and reading Sartre in their home libraries.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 29, 2019, 09:02:11 AM
Because you are insinuating that all kids should magically have the insight to know better than to follow societal norms. And the societal norms in the US is capitalism, materialism, and debt. How do you expect a 17 year old to realize it's all BS even though most adults haven't even figured it out yet? 

But you're in Austrailia so I don't expect you to understand.
You know Australians are basically upside-down Americans with alligators and kangaroos, right?

They're not wearing tweed jackets and reading Sartre in their home libraries.

That's completely incorrect. Australia has crocodiles, not alligators.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Davnasty on August 29, 2019, 09:19:09 AM
Because you are insinuating that all kids should magically have the insight to know better than to follow societal norms. And the societal norms in the US is capitalism, materialism, and debt. How do you expect a 17 year old to realize it's all BS even though most adults haven't even figured it out yet? 

But you're in Austrailia so I don't expect you to understand.
You know Australians are basically upside-down Americans with alligators and kangaroos, right?

They're not wearing tweed jackets and reading Sartre in their home libraries.

That's completely incorrect. Australia has crocodiles, not alligators.

What's a crocodile? Is that an upside down alligator?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 29, 2019, 09:34:49 AM
In which case it can't be blamed on the universities, but rather represents a collective failure of the students, their parents, their peers, their teachers, etc.

If you're 18 and you're privileged enough to go to university, you need to take some responsibility for signing on the dotted line.

I read something a while ago where they said that the American public has now decided that people aren't adults until they are 26. Reality is that people are adults when they turn 18 and are legally responsible for themselves. Maybe we should stop babying young people so much and let them handle their own stuff. They'll make some mistakes along the way, but then they can learn the valuable life lessons that everyone learns when they fix their errors.

If they take out $150,000 in student loans and they don't end up as a doctor, then they are just stupid and there is no helping that.
It's a combination of things.
You can vote at 18 and join the military.
You cannot drink until 21.
In some cases, you cannot even rent a car before 25.

...And there is a reason for that - we learn new things all the time, and it turns out that the brain isn't fully formed until about 25 or so, which is why dumb kids do dumb things.

That doesn't mean that SOME people aren't adults by 18, or 16, or 20.  I certainly was but I always was kinda shy, boring, and risk averse.

But it does mean that there's actual science behind why people have adjusted their expectations of 20-somethings.

(Similarly, science shows us that it's safer for babies and toddlers to be rear facing past age 2.  And science shows us that it is not until age 10 that MOST children are safely able to cross a street by themselves.)

If the child in question is raised in a foam-padded world where they don't get street crossing practice, it's reasonable to expect them to fail at this up to age 10. If the kid is raised on a farm and is used to handling livestock and driving tractors at age 10, or if the kid is encouraged to walk to school or to the bus stop, they are fully capable of crossing a street safely by age 5 or 6.

It's becoming increasingly acceptable to excuse stupid, short-sighted behavior because a person's "brain isn't fully developed", and to use that as a justification to deprive people of brain-development exercise (that is to say, decision making) opportunities. To my way of thinking-- and I may be the only human on the planet or at least in the United States who has this opinion-- the solution is to let kids have some low-stakes learning experiences so that their brains develop, instead of trying to communicate everything in a classroom. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they borrow a dollar from a friend or sibling and don't repay it. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they don't do their homework, or when they miss the bus and have to walk three miles to school. This involves allowing the child to become uncomfortable, while ideally stopping short of any serious physical danger.
Bingo.  This is known as "anti-fragility".
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Davnasty on August 29, 2019, 09:43:35 AM
This conversation is getting off-track. Let me help get it back where it needs to be:

1.) Yes, you can pay your student loans.
2.) No, I won't pay your student loans for you.
3.) Yes, you pay your student loans by not buying Starbucks (or takeout or beers at the bar or books at B&N, etc.)
4.) No, the government is not going to change laws to force other people to pay your student loans for you.
5.) Yes, you are going to need to suck it up, buttercup.

I agree it seems there is a disconnect in what is being debated. I think some posters are arguing against specific claims while not necessarily being in favor of student lone forgiveness.

I would be in that group. I'm not in favor of student loan forgiveness and I think the article (which is really just a compilation of social media posts) in the OP is nonsense. However, I also think there are a number of issues that should be addressed including the ease with which we allow 17-18 year olds to spend money they haven't earned and may not have a clear plan for earning in the future.

The argument that kids smart enough to get into college should also be smart enough to figure out the financial side of the equation is odd to me. We can say it all we want but clearly that's not the way it's playing out in the real world. I think it's tempting to determine one's beliefs based on theories that sound reasonable but then when real world data disagrees with those theories, we fail to incorporate it into our beliefs. Rather than acknowledge that there may be other factors at play, we just figure out a way to blame it on the individual. And hey, it may very well be the individuals fault, but that doesn't mean it's not a problem worth addressing.

Here's another way to put this: if I were talking to an individual who had a big student loan to pay off, I would explain the benefits of getting rid of the debt asap and give advice on how to do so because they should operate with the assumption that no one else is going to solve this problem for them. If however, I was tasked with working on a plan to improve the situation at a societal level, I'd focus on what people are doing, not what they should be doing.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Davnasty on August 29, 2019, 09:56:28 AM
Another thought about the bigger picture - I'm very much in favor of giving children the opportunity to fail and learn how the real world operates and making them feel the consequences of failure. The issue I see with student loans is that the potential consequences are drastically out of proportion to the ease with which the mistake can be made.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: DadJokes on August 29, 2019, 10:10:27 AM
Another thought about the bigger picture - I'm very much in favor of giving children the opportunity to fail and learn how the real world operates and making them feel the consequences of failure. The issue I see with student loans is that the potential consequences are drastically out of proportion to the ease with which the mistake can be made.

And if what I read on the internet is to be believed (huge leap of faith there), most of them aren't learning from the mistake anyway.

It's why we as parents need to let them make mistakes and learn from them earlier in life before the consequences are bigger.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 29, 2019, 10:21:03 AM
Here in SE Michigan USA, in-state tuition rates (i.e., only for established Michigan residents) at the local public universities ranges from $11k to $15k per year (this includes the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and Dearborn, Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University, and Wayne State University). That's a total of $44–60k before books, supplies, course fees, and living expenses.

Let's take this figure at face value (I'm not picking on your post, just referencing it for real numbers), and also assume the students are studying really hard so can't get a part-time job, but at the same time are frugal and spend $10k per year for room and board, putting them at $100k debt upon graduation at 22 years old. Don't get me wrong, that's a sucky amount of debt. But when you consider the average college graduate entry level job pays $50k per year (https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305 (https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305)), and if one lived like a Mustachian for four years with $25k annual expenses, they could be debt free within four years.

Here's an interesting table: https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_331.30.asp?current=yes (https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_331.30.asp?current=yes). If I'm reading this correctly, the average cost (including tuition, fees, room, and board) to attend a public 4-year college in the U.S. for students whose parents make no more than $48k (an income above which parents are expected to make some level of contribution) is less than $11,000 annually when considering grant and scholarship aid.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 29, 2019, 10:39:52 AM
Because you are insinuating that all kids should magically have the insight to know better than to follow societal norms. And the societal norms in the US is capitalism, materialism, and debt. How do you expect a 17 year old to realize it's all BS even though most adults haven't even figured it out yet? 

But you're in Austrailia so I don't expect you to understand.
You know Australians are basically upside-down Americans with alligators and kangaroos, right?

They're not wearing tweed jackets and reading Sartre in their home libraries.

That's completely incorrect. Australia has crocodiles, not alligators.

What's a crocodile? Is that an upside down alligator?

And a bogan is upside-down white trash.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: OtherJen on August 29, 2019, 10:46:39 AM
I expect a lot of people, full stop. And I know not everyone is going to hit those expectations, and for those who don't, they're gonna have to suffer the consequences.
That's really not a healthy way of looking at the world, and that's coming from a certified cynic. By all means hold yourself to high standards, but make the bar progressively lower depending on your relationship with other people (e.g., family not quite as high as yourself, friends a bit lower, etc.) and the random person on the street should have an exceedingly low bar to meet.

Of course you will still be disappointed more often than not, but at least there is a chance that people can meet expectations.

I have to contradict your statement. Here in SE Michigan USA, in-state tuition rates (i.e., only for established Michigan residents) at the local public universities ranges from $11k to $15k per year (this includes the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and Dearborn, Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University, and Wayne State University). That's a total of $44–60k before books, supplies, course fees, and living expenses.
Ann Arbor tends to ping-pong back and forth with Michigan Tech as the most expensive in the state as well, just to put things in context.

The lowest average in-state tuition at at a public university appears to be at Northern Michigan University (Marquette), at just under $10K per year. So the average cost of a 4-year degree at a public university in my state, assuming in-state tuition rates, ranges from $40–60K before factoring in fees/books/supplies/living expenses.

Not arguing that $50K of student loan debt is insurmountable by any means, but someone who lives on the other side of the world claimed that it would be impossible to rack up that amount of debt at a public university.

Disclaimer: I have never held student loan debt; my tuition was paid for by a combination of generous scholarships and parental contributions, as I was fortunate to be an only child. Several friends who were the oldest of multiple-kid families got screwed by a combination of parental income and an inability/unwillingness of the parents to make the expected parental contributions. So yeah, loans. In-state tuition was a lot less crazy in the mid to late 1990s, though (at Michigan State, roughly $4-5K per year then vs. roughly $11K per year now).
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: therethere on August 29, 2019, 10:59:40 AM
Here in SE Michigan USA, in-state tuition rates (i.e., only for established Michigan residents) at the local public universities ranges from $11k to $15k per year (this includes the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and Dearborn, Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University, and Wayne State University). That's a total of $44–60k before books, supplies, course fees, and living expenses.

Let's take this figure at face value (I'm not picking on your post, just referencing it for real numbers), and also assume the students are studying really hard so can't get a part-time job, but at the same time are frugal and spend $10k per year for room and board, putting them at $100k debt upon graduation at 22 years old. Don't get me wrong, that's a sucky amount of debt. But when you consider the average college graduate entry level job pays $50k per year (https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305 (https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305)), and if one lived like a Mustachian for four years with $25k annual expenses, they could be debt free within four years.

Here's an interesting table: https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_331.30.asp?current=yes (https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_331.30.asp?current=yes). If I'm reading this correctly, the average cost (including tuition, fees, room, and board) to attend a public 4-year college in the U.S. for students whose parents make no more than $48k (an income above which parents are expected to make some level of contribution) is less than $11,000 annually when considering grant and scholarship aid.

Not to nitpick... But you conveniently excluded taxes and interest rates which make a huge difference. With a 50k salary, and 25k spend rate once you include ~5% rate on the loans and income taxes your repayment length on 100k is actually 8 years, not the 4 you stated with simple math. That's if you're good and have no lifestyle inflation and no job loss.

Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 29, 2019, 11:34:09 AM
Here in SE Michigan USA, in-state tuition rates (i.e., only for established Michigan residents) at the local public universities ranges from $11k to $15k per year (this includes the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and Dearborn, Michigan State University, Eastern Michigan University, and Wayne State University). That's a total of $44–60k before books, supplies, course fees, and living expenses.

Let's take this figure at face value (I'm not picking on your post, just referencing it for real numbers), and also assume the students are studying really hard so can't get a part-time job, but at the same time are frugal and spend $10k per year for room and board, putting them at $100k debt upon graduation at 22 years old. Don't get me wrong, that's a sucky amount of debt. But when you consider the average college graduate entry level job pays $50k per year (https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305 (https://www.thebalance.com/college-graduate-salaries-expectations-vs-reality-4142305)), and if one lived like a Mustachian for four years with $25k annual expenses, they could be debt free within four years.

Here's an interesting table: https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_331.30.asp?current=yes (https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_331.30.asp?current=yes). If I'm reading this correctly, the average cost (including tuition, fees, room, and board) to attend a public 4-year college in the U.S. for students whose parents make no more than $48k (an income above which parents are expected to make some level of contribution) is less than $11,000 annually when considering grant and scholarship aid.

Not to nitpick... But you conveniently excluded taxes and interest rates which make a huge difference. With a 50k salary, and 25k spend rate once you include ~5% rate on the loans and income taxes your repayment length on 100k is actually 8 years, not the 4 you stated with simple math. That's if you're good and have no lifestyle inflation and no job loss.

Feel free to nitpick, I do it all the time. :)  You're right, I should have done the math with interest and income taxes (and social security taxes, etc.). Adding all that together and assuming no major pay increases, I'll concede 8 years for $100k.

However, to nitpick your nitpick, if the average net cost for a U.S. student is $11k (as shown in my second paragraph), bringing the average student debt at graduation to $44k (that's again assuming no job during college), then the timeframe drops back to less than 4 years to pay off the debt.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: mm1970 on August 29, 2019, 01:51:08 PM
Quote
It's becoming increasingly acceptable to excuse stupid, short-sighted behavior because a person's "brain isn't fully developed", and to use that as a justification to deprive people of brain-development exercise (that is to say, decision making) opportunities. To my way of thinking-- and I may be the only human on the planet or at least in the United States who has this opinion-- the solution is to let kids have some low-stakes learning experiences so that their brains develop, instead of trying to communicate everything in a classroom. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they borrow a dollar from a friend or sibling and don't repay it. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they don't do their homework, or when they miss the bus and have to walk three miles to school. This involves allowing the child to become uncomfortable, while ideally stopping short of any serious physical danger.
My friends and I do our best to do this (I mean, the homework thing, and the money thing).  I'm not exactly willing to let my 7 year old cross the street by himself - not in our neighborhood anyway.  That's a fast way to end up without a kid.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 29, 2019, 02:36:15 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 29, 2019, 02:58:12 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!

Do you really want to play the hyperbole game?

kids have it so tough these days. we should make college education free so they don't have to be under any debt. we should also give them $12,000 a year so they won't have to be under any living pressure. oh wait, some people need $20,000 a year? well maybe we should make it fair and give everyone $20,000 per year, we don't want to see any suffering or unfairness in the world. let's make electricity free, since people function best at 72°f and we don't want them to pay huge electric bills. let's issue everyone a bedpan and catheter, sure don't want to make them suffer the long walk to the bathroom.

that's how society shows compassion.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: TheGrimSqueaker on August 29, 2019, 03:53:38 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!

Funny you should mention "feeling like shit".

My daughter once complained to me that she felt like "a real piece of shit" because she'd recently done some cruel, antisocial, and self-absorbed things. I told her that the feeling she was having was the normal and predictable consequence of what she'd done. I said that if she liked that feeling and wanted more of it, then all she had to do is repeat those specific dishonest and irresponsible behaviors. But if she wanted the feeling to go away, she needed to stop giving herself permission to do the things that produced those feelings.

Apparently nobody had ever told her that before. She'd been raised in an environment where everyone told her she was a special little snowflake, that the rules didn't apply to her, that she was a Very Good Person because she believed in an imaginary sky daddy, and that because of her belief she was double-plus-special. Therefore it didn't matter what she did to other people: she could do as many bad things as she wanted and still be a Very Good Person, because her beliefs put her above things like laws, commandments, house rules, and any sort of moral standards. Furthermore, she'd learned that she could get what she wanted if she threw a big enough tantrum and was abusive enough toward enough people.

There were a few years of drama, and my daughter experienced lots of natural consequences from sources besides me, but I now have a young adult who consistently behaves in a reasonably considerate manner toward me. Over the years I did have to help her connect the things she was experiencing with the behavior she'd been dishing out, because she genuinely could not see the connection. Time after time, I asked: "what happened immediately before that?" A normal person does make that connection, just like a puppy does, however not everyone is wired that way. They are genuinely unable to learn by being told, or from other people's experience. They really do have to stick the fork in the light socket themselves.

I would never describe my daughter as weak, however her thinking and reasoning patterns were based on a very reactive world-view rooted in her reaction to trauma and instability. That world-view had to change before she was able to move forward.

I didn't get off on watching my daughter suffer. The destruction of one's world-view, maladaptive though it may be, is never fun or easy.

The "tough love" parenting concept was not my first choice. In fact it was my tenth, due in part to the fact that until my daughter had reached her legal majority I was legally required to continue providing for her and to continue allowing her access to my home. She knew that. Only once she reached her legal majority, when she was no longer entitled to financial support from me in any way, did she have an incentive to lay off the abuse. But it did eventually work. It was the only thing that did. Also, I was the only parent and authority figure to succeed in causing my daughter to act like a civilized person without being heavily medicated. About eleven other households, including professional treatment foster parents, had tried and failed. We're not in danger of becoming a Campbell's Soup happy family, but she truly has changed and my well-being is actually a small and intermittent blip on her radar screen.

The thing to remember about cause and effect parenting is that it's far more effective when the kid is young and can fail on a small scale. As they reach the teen years and beyond, they develop the ability to damage themselves, and others, on a more impressive scale. I got my daughter when she was fifteen and we didn't finalize the adoption and kick the social workers out until she was almost sixteen and a half. I didn't have a lot of time, and some of the legal and logistics aspects of being an adoptive family made it hard to create an environment where cause and effect could really roll.

I suppose that the upshot of all of this is that if you're dealing with a basically normal, well-adjusted young person who's on the right side of the bell curve in terms of opportunity and brain power, all you really have to do is place them in the right environment and they'll bloom where they're planted. It's also reasonable to expect them to understand things like compound interest and the impact of student loans. An individual like my daughter, however, has the same legal right to take out massive student loans at Bullshit U and is legally on the hook to pay them even if she washes out or is socially promoted to the point where she's issued a worthless degree and can't find a job. Because my daughter's difficulties aren't severe enough to put her two full sigmas to the left, she's not legally incompetent and she can and will be held legally accountable if she takes out a loan. Yet she's incredibly vulnerable to snake-oil salespeople, car salespeople, Bullshit U finance departments, and a bunch of other people who make a living selling overpriced and overrated merchandise.

People like my daughter live in the same world as Buff Elvis, who because of his hardcore badassity was able to raise himself out of poverty through a combination of education, hard work, student loans, and a pair of gigantic brass testicles. Now, Buff Elvis is kind of a Horatio Alger wet dream (except he's a fully grown adult and apparently straight). My daughter? Well, she's making outstanding progress but in some respects she's still catching up. Compared to most people her age, her concentration capability's not as intense, she isn't a good credit risk, her impulse control has room for improvement, and her work ethic isn't as well developed and it might not ever be. I won't even get started on the testicle issue. But the same laws and expectations apply to her as apply to Buff Elvis. What created an outstanding opportunity and success pathway for him could easily create a pitfall for her.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 29, 2019, 05:39:56 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!

Do you really want to play the hyperbole game?

kids have it so tough these days. we should make college education free so they don't have to be under any debt. we should also give them $12,000 a year so they won't have to be under any living pressure. oh wait, some people need $20,000 a year? well maybe we should make it fair and give everyone $20,000 per year, we don't want to see any suffering or unfairness in the world. let's make electricity free, since people function best at 72°f and we don't want them to pay huge electric bills. let's issue everyone a bedpan and catheter, sure don't want to make them suffer the long walk to the bathroom.

that's how society shows compassion.

Challenge doesn't equal suffering.

I'm all for challenge.

I am not in any way for suffering.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 29, 2019, 07:09:12 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!

Do you really want to play the hyperbole game?

kids have it so tough these days. we should make college education free so they don't have to be under any debt. we should also give them $12,000 a year so they won't have to be under any living pressure. oh wait, some people need $20,000 a year? well maybe we should make it fair and give everyone $20,000 per year, we don't want to see any suffering or unfairness in the world. let's make electricity free, since people function best at 72°f and we don't want them to pay huge electric bills. let's issue everyone a bedpan and catheter, sure don't want to make them suffer the long walk to the bathroom.

that's how society shows compassion.

Challenge doesn't equal suffering.

I'm all for challenge.

I am not in any way for suffering.

Are you certain you can always tell the difference?
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 29, 2019, 07:18:20 PM
No, of course not. There's always grey areas, and personality at play, and context. However, after spending a decade working with suffering day in day out I really do not think there's a reasonable argument that it promotes growth or ability in any but exceedingly rare (and lucky) individuals.

Even accounting for difference, conceptually suffering's cons outweigh the pros, while hardship can make us more resilient and provide learning opportunities.

So I don't put any stock into the value of suffering. If suffering made us better society would be getting worse and less effective now than it was during times of famine, war, slavery, genocide, but that's not really how things work.

Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 29, 2019, 08:47:56 PM
Suit yourself, but don't forget, the Flood is always coming, and when it hits you, you might wonder if you could have made yourself stronger beforehand.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 29, 2019, 11:02:11 PM
I'm satisfied with my current level of strength. I'm sure if there's an apocalypse I'll be one of the first to go, but it's just not a priority of mine. I'd prefer to try and build a gentler world.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: BTDretire on August 30, 2019, 12:23:49 PM
This conversation is getting off-track. Let me help get it back where it needs to be:

1.) Yes, you can pay your student loans.
2.) No, I won't pay your student loans for you.
3.) Yes, you pay your student loans by not buying Starbucks (or takeout or beers at the bar or books at B&N, etc.)
4.) No, the government is not going to change laws to force other people to pay your student loans for you.
5.) Yes, you are going to need to suck it up, buttercup.
I quoted you on the Remy:All My Love video, hope you don't mind.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Boofinator on August 30, 2019, 03:18:46 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!

Do you really want to play the hyperbole game?

kids have it so tough these days. we should make college education free so they don't have to be under any debt. we should also give them $12,000 a year so they won't have to be under any living pressure. oh wait, some people need $20,000 a year? well maybe we should make it fair and give everyone $20,000 per year, we don't want to see any suffering or unfairness in the world. let's make electricity free, since people function best at 72°f and we don't want them to pay huge electric bills. let's issue everyone a bedpan and catheter, sure don't want to make them suffer the long walk to the bathroom.

that's how society shows compassion.

Challenge doesn't equal suffering.

I'm all for challenge.

I am not in any way for suffering.

I agree. I feel paying off student loans is essentially on the challenge side of the spectrum rather than the suffering side.

Additionally, paying off one's debts (to the extent possible) is essential for a healthy society. The opposite of this sentiment is a form of theft, in that people will believe they can borrow money and not have to give it back.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: TheGrimSqueaker on August 30, 2019, 03:21:22 PM
KIDS ARE WEAK, YOU GOTTA MAKE THEM TOUGH. IT'S WHAT BEING A MAN IS ABOUT. LET THEM FREEZE. LET THEM FEEL PAIN. LET THEM LEARN TO RESPECT MONEY BY GOING IN DEBT. LET THEM FEEL LIKE SHITTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!

THAT'S HOW A MAN TEACHES A LESSON!

Do you really want to play the hyperbole game?

kids have it so tough these days. we should make college education free so they don't have to be under any debt. we should also give them $12,000 a year so they won't have to be under any living pressure. oh wait, some people need $20,000 a year? well maybe we should make it fair and give everyone $20,000 per year, we don't want to see any suffering or unfairness in the world. let's make electricity free, since people function best at 72°f and we don't want them to pay huge electric bills. let's issue everyone a bedpan and catheter, sure don't want to make them suffer the long walk to the bathroom.

that's how society shows compassion.

Challenge doesn't equal suffering.

I'm all for challenge.

I am not in any way for suffering.

I agree. I feel paying off student loans is essentially on the challenge side of the spectrum rather than the suffering side.

Additionally, paying off one's debts (to the extent possible) is essential for a healthy society. The opposite of this sentiment is a form of theft, in that people will believe they can borrow money and not have to give it back.

The more a destructive behavior is normalized, the more people will do it.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 30, 2019, 05:12:19 PM

I agree. I feel paying off student loans is essentially on the challenge side of the spectrum rather than the suffering side.

Additionally, paying off one's debts (to the extent possible) is essential for a healthy society. The opposite of this sentiment is a form of theft, in that people will believe they can borrow money and not have to give it back.

Obviously it depends on the size of the loan and the conditions with which is was organised. Some loans are definitely fine, some are usurious. I'm trying to get contrarians to look at the situation as a whole (in the context of wage stagnation, casualisation of the work force and increasing costs (tuition, text books, rent, etc) and potentially see that there are recipes for long term problems.

I'm not actually arguing for no debt or for people not having to pay for anything - I haven't made that point, nor will I be.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 31, 2019, 08:38:54 AM
I think I agree with you more than it might seem.  Most of the problem of what is being sold to older kids lies at the feet of their educators; their parents not instilling the subtleties of the situation, extraordinary bloat in admin departments, lack of recursion in post sec(do these kids actually get jobs paying in their educated field?  Do colleges even care?)

I think partly it's the blind spot of career educators who also see their path as the recommended one--people that haven't worked in the competitive private sector and seen the ruthlessness of it.

Maybe that's my myopia showing. 

I think more education in high school should be built on an apprenticeship model--do you see the value and challenges of this field?  Does the work feel right for you?

We dispense all this info in a second order attempt to build expertise, and assume the groundwork will build itself.  It's backwards.

Further to this, the universities are ripe for restructuring.  The information is widely available and could be easily distributed at low cost, It's the accreditation end that's still complicated.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: WhiteTrashCash on August 31, 2019, 08:56:20 AM
For what it's worth, I had a friend who was struggling up on Hillbilly Mountain as a very poorly paid high school social studies teacher. He was treated very disrespectfully by people who felt that social studies had no practical value and eventually fired because he didn't want to change athletes' grades for eligibility reasons. During all these troubles, he used the library and websites to learn to build computers and manage software and earned multiple certifications online in various types of systems. After he was fired by the high school, he packed up everything he owned and moved to the West Coast where he easily found work with just the certifications he earned online.

Recently, he sold his West Coast home for a massive profit and he's taking two years off from work to spend time with his kids after moving to his dream home in the country.

So... there is some merit to those who talk about learning a trade. People just need to focus on 21st century trades.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Wrenchturner on August 31, 2019, 11:22:07 AM
Most trades haven't changed that much since the 20th century.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: SwordGuy on August 31, 2019, 03:13:00 PM

If the child in question is raised in a foam-padded world where they don't get street crossing practice, it's reasonable to expect them to fail at this up to age 10. If the kid is raised on a farm and is used to handling livestock and driving tractors at age 10, or if the kid is encouraged to walk to school or to the bus stop, they are fully capable of crossing a street safely by age 5 or 6.

It's becoming increasingly acceptable to excuse stupid, short-sighted behavior because a person's "brain isn't fully developed", and to use that as a justification to deprive people of brain-development exercise (that is to say, decision making) opportunities. To my way of thinking-- and I may be the only human on the planet or at least in the United States who has this opinion-- the solution is to let kids have some low-stakes learning experiences so that their brains develop, instead of trying to communicate everything in a classroom. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they borrow a dollar from a friend or sibling and don't repay it. Let them have the experience of finding out what happens when they don't do their homework, or when they miss the bus and have to walk three miles to school. This involves allowing the child to become uncomfortable, while ideally stopping short of any serious physical danger.

You are not alone @TheGrimSqueaker !

Not only that, but if they learn how to deal with disappointment when it's just small stuff, they're less likely to off themselves when The Real World (TM) kicks their ass for a bit.    Resiliency can be taught and it can be learned, but not in a classroom.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Bloop Bloop on August 31, 2019, 06:46:11 PM
Resilience can be taught and learned in a classroom, but the trend towards not focussing on winning/losing and not providing criticism or constructive feedback at a young age (so as to nurture "esteem") means that resilience is not being as taught as effectively. Ideally you want children "losing" (i.e. not getting what they want, immediately when they want it) as much as they are winning - whether it's in academics, sports, toys or debating - so that they don't get complacent or distorted view of how the world works.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: LonerMatt on August 31, 2019, 08:27:51 PM
All of which is challenge and none of which is suffering.

I worked in classrooms for 10 years, none of the things you're mentioning are as present as the internet makes them seem.
Title: Re: Waah! It's impossible to ever pay off student loan debt! (Article)
Post by: Just Joe on September 02, 2019, 01:48:46 PM

I think more education in high school should be built on an apprenticeship model--do you see the value and challenges of this field?  Does the work feel right for you?

....

Further to this, the universities are ripe for restructuring.  The information is widely available and could be easily distributed at low cost, It's the accreditation end that's still complicated.

I agree. Vocational classes at our local HS were often throw away students who didn't aspire to accomplish anything but waste time. The quality of instructor varied a great deal too. If only they put as much energy and quality into that program as they did college prep.