"Generation Debt": College Costs, Uncertain Job Market Threaten Young Futures - Page 2 - U2 Feedback

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Old 02-22-2006, 05:46 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally posted by randhail
I disagree with the not working while you're in college. Unless you're a science major with labs, you're in class for 3 or 4 hours a day tops. The workload isn't the same for all classes, but there is still an abundance of free time even with all the studying. If a student wants to work a couple hours a day at Best Buy for the discount or for beer money, all the power to him.

The biggest thing college teaches you is how to manage your time because so much of it is spent outside the classroom. Some people can handle it and others can't. I think that alcohol is much more of a reason for people fucking up and not graduating on time than working too much is.

My sense of things could be skewed though because I attended a liberal arts school where an extremely high percentage of students graduated on time and had parents paying for most of the tuition.
if you're working a job or more and trying to juggle classes, sometimes time management issues are totally out of your hands regarding class scheduling or work scheduling, and not even having your priorities 100% in order can help. jobs aren't always flexible, flexible jobs aren't always available.

i'd like to see clearer details regarding time it takes to graduate in relation with hours kids are working. this country is full of idiots who can't pass basic math or write a simple paragraph for history 101. most of the "super-seniors" i've met aren't here because they had to balance 3 jobs, it's because they've spent all their time drinking, which they can afford because mommy and daddy are paying for everything. and i go to a state university where, in theory (my thoughts on how true that is notwithstanding), there are a larger percentage of kids not here on their parents' dime.
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Old 02-22-2006, 05:51 PM   #17
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thanks for the advice.

just to clarify...I didn't mean to imply that UGA is a "second choice" or lower level college or anything. It's a great school and not that easy to get into anymore from what I'm told ( ), and yeah Athens is pretty cool.

but obviously everyone thinks they want to go out of state when they're in high school.
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Old 02-22-2006, 05:52 PM   #18
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This statement stood out:

Quote:
A college degree is now a crucial pass
A couple of generations ago, a high school diploma was meaningful for entry into the job market - now a college degree is practically essential.

Another factor is the downward pressure of consumerism. Prior generations deferred purchases by years - today, we can finance and get what we want, when we want it.

As for my responsiblity as a parent - I may never own a house or have nice things in life, but I will do my absolute best to pay for my children's education.
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Old 02-22-2006, 05:57 PM   #19
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As for my responsiblity as a parent - I may never own a house or have nice things in life, but I will do my absolute best to pay for my children's education.


After my own experiences, I feel the same way.

My mom raised me on her own and was able to save a little money to help me with college, but it was nowhere near enough. Not everyone has the ability to pay for their children's education, and those who can are lucky! If I ever have children, I hope to be in the position financially to pay for their educations.
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:02 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
but obviously everyone thinks they want to go out of state when they're in high school.
Well that's true, I did too, and I did actually, because I went to college in NJ whereas our family home (well, apartment) was in Brooklyn. But it was still close by, and I chose that largely so I could commute home on weekends and help my mother out, which of course I pitied myself for tremendously at the time. But the thrill of "getting away" just isn't worth saddling yourself with an extra $20,000 in debt. It's nice to get out of your hometown if you can, but you do what you have to do.

That said, I have to admit had we still been living back in Mississippi...eh...now Oxford has its virtues, but I can't really see myself having been anything but suicidal at the prospect of 4 years at Ole Miss.
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:22 PM   #21
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What school you go to matters in some professional degrees - MBA, law, etc. There, the prestige and reputation of a school nationally are huge intangibles. As far as undergraduate degrees are concerned, I have not noticed much of an advantage in drowning yourself in debt just for the prestige of a name.
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:27 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
What school you go to matters in some professional degrees - MBA, law, etc. There, the prestige and reputation of a school nationally are huge intangibles. As far as undergraduate degrees are concerned, I have not noticed much of an advantage in drowning yourself in debt just for the prestige of a name.
The value of professional degrees from certain schools essentially operates on tier system.

For law schools, there are about 5 schools on the top tier, and about 40 some schools on the next tier.

The degree itself is essentially fungible. The connections you make from the school (which come in part from the reputation) are the real value obtained.
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:37 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
The connections you make from the school (which come in part from the reputation) are the real value obtained.
I forgot to mention that when I was responding to VertigoGal--letters of reference and other forms of "connections" are crucial in the humanities as well, and one more reason why cultivating a network of mentors is very important.
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fungible
Wow, I had to look this one up! Fun new word And it's not even in the American Heritage Dictionary!
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:41 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland

I forgot to mention that when I was responding to VertigoGal--letters of reference and other forms of "connections" are crucial in the humanities as well, and one more reason why cultivating a network of mentors is very important.
If you're applying to grad school in the arts or sciences, recommendations (how good they are, and especially *who* writes them) are easily the most important part of the package. Obviously going to a big-name school helps in this regard, but if you happen not to go to one of these schools, you want to connect with the best-known profs in your department, and try to work your way up into a stronger graduate school.
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:41 PM   #25
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Yes, most programs are tiered that way. You have your Top 5 MBAs as well, and so on. I think there you have a definite advantage to attending the school in the highest tier/grouping you can get into. Within the tier itself, you may have personal preferences and probably no matter which one you end up at, you haven't made a mistake.

But with undergraduate schools, I really don't see an advantage so huge in attending a top tiered school vs. a respectable state school, particularly if your studies will go beyond your bachelor's degree. Get a solid GPA, some good relationships with profs willing to be your recommenders, and a good score on whatever entrance exam you need (GMAT, MCAT, LSAT, GRE...), and you will be just fine in your continuing studies, and your debt load may be significantly lower by electing to remain in-state for 4 years.
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:43 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by IWasBored

i'd like to see clearer details regarding time it takes to graduate in relation with hours kids are working.
At MIT, the published workload is 48 hours/week for 4 years. YMMV.
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:10 PM   #27
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i finished my bachelor degree in may of 2005. the best opportunity i had following graduation was another internship in philadelphia. i jumped at the chance since most people graduating with my degree don't find work in their chosen field. i began this internship with the understanding, as expressed by whom i would be working with, that after a short period of training on his equipment that it would turn into a part-time job. i was ok with this. the field i was persuing required real world experience and i had no qualms about working two jobs to get things started. by september of 2005 i had made $200 in total from this internship/part-time "job" and had relied heavily on my parents for support (something i am none too proud of). i was forced to take more hours at my second job to make myself at least 80-90% independent from my parents. the guy who i was working with wasn't so interested in getting me work after my availability tightened up. i guess a flexible free intern is more appealing than paying someone for part-time work. i now carry the lowest opinion of this man and have become disillusioned with my original plans. luckily, while in school i developed other interests that gave me ideas for new paths. unfortunately i have been unable to find a job in this new path since my degree did not aptly prepare me for a different career. despite going to a liberal arts school and taking a variety of courses in a variety of topics (SOMETHING I BELIEVE VERY STRONGLY IN FOR EVERYONE), my degree was rather specific.

i now stand waiting on financial information for grad school. at this point i might as well add an additional $40,000 of debt to the $20,000 i have from my undergraduate studies. but i won't. if i don't get substantial financial aid from either school i can't go.

plan b. i hope to return to a state school in new york to finish a second bachelor's. not my ideal plan but it seems to be increasingly necessary. this would hopefully only add another $10,000 in debt.

plan c. alternate-alternate career path. again, i'm not even sure i am qualified for a position.

i now view my original degree as a waste of my time and my parent's money. how was i to know 4 years ago? i went to school and studied what i was interested in and what i loved. i changed a lot over those 4 years though and had a suspicion going into my senior year that i might be going in the wrong direction.

it's hard not to regret it. without those 4 years at that school i wouldn't be who i am today. i'm proud of who i am. i'm not proud of the situation i've found (put?) myself in.

the educational system in this country is a joke and most private universities are no more than corporations. $$$ is the bottom line. period. president bush wants this country to crank out more scientists who can propel our society into the coming decades. good luck with that. our economic system will collapse under the weight of their personal debts.

i wish i could do it all differently, but i can't. i've got a $20,000 bill to show for it. probably more.
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:14 PM   #28
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If I think about all the student debt I have, I will get angry. Very angry.

Then when I think about all my Canadian friends who have no student loan debt and seemingly lots of disposable income, I will get furious. It doesn't make me "proud to be an American."

But, on the bright side, all my student loan debt is with the U.S. Dept. of Education, and they have infinite forbearance / deferment for those who qualify, unlike all private student loan lenders that usually limit it to 2-3 years over the lifetime of the loan.

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Old 02-22-2006, 08:17 PM   #29
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Can we talk about the elephant in the room?

"[US] Military spending relative to other countries

A comparison of the budgets for the world's greatest military spenders. Note that this comparison is done in US dollars and thus is not adjusted for purchasing power parity.

The current (2005) United States military budget is larger than the military budgets of the next twenty biggest spenders combined, and six times larger than China's, which places second.

The United States and its close allies are responsible for approximately two-thirds of all military spending on Earth (of which, in turn, the U.S. is responsible for two-thirds), and spend 57 times more than the seven so-called "rogue" nations combined (Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Sudan and Syria). Military spending accounts for more than half of the United States' federal discretionary spending, which is all of the U.S. government's money not spoken for by pre-existing obligations. [1]

According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, in 2003 the United States spent approximately 47% of the world's total military spending of US$956,000,000,000.

Relative to the total GDP of the United States, however, the total spending on the military was only 3.7% in 2003. This spending rate has been in a slow decline since peaking in 1944 at 37.8% of GDP. Even during the peak of the Vietnam War the percentage reached only a high of 9.4% in 1968. As a percentage of discretionary spending, the US outlays for defense are also at a relatively low level. In 1972, for example, the percentage was 72.9%."
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:27 PM   #30
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[i]the educational system in this country is a joke and most private universities are no more than corporations. $$$ is the bottom line. period. president bush wants this country to crank out more scientists who can propel our society into the coming decades. good luck with that. our economic system will collapse under the weight of their personal debts.[/B]

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