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Old 02-24-2006, 05:34 AM   #61
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon
You know, maybe it's time for this generation to become better organized and more politically active. I mean, you can see what "waiting our turn" has left us with: poor job prospects and tons of debt.

And really...partisan pride aside, does anyone REALLY have any optimism for the 2008 election? You're just going to have the same idiotic "baby boomers" running as always. They promise you the world, but, in the end, they only think of themselves. We should be organizing to take over Congress and, likewise, getting a constitutional amendment to lower the minimum age for the presidency. I mean, these current losers have done nothing but waste our time and money. So let's take over!

Melon
also, i know this is going to sound quite out of place, but did you guys consider looking abroad for education? there was this american (ok, floridan) girl i met when i was in the netherlands, she was 18 and she just moved there to study. i mean, even the best colleges in europe and asia are a whole lot more affordable than the US. something i always hear about the US higher education is that it has the best and the worst schools in it. to be fair, there are a couple of schools ive applied to for my graduate degree over there, but i cant help but feel the pain of having to pay 38.000 dollars for tuition.

this is especially high considering the tuition for my school, bilkent university, is around 8000 dollars. its not a very big school, around 10,000 students. lots of faculties, from business to archeology or drama. the school also offers lots of scholarships if you have a high GPA. (25% of the undergrad students have full scholarships, 80% of grad students have fellowships). i am very happy with it since it also allowed me to go on exchange last year. i live at home (the school is just 1 mile away) so my only costs are the tuition and what i spend for other stuff. i am one of the lucky ones, admittedly, since my family can afford the tuition. there are also several international students enrolled here, and it costs them a grand total of around 20 K yearly, 8 K tuition and 12 K everything else. the education is also the best in the country, we have exchange programs with lots of top schools like berkeley, mcgill, copenhagen etc.

i am sure that there are lots of other similar examples from around the world. i guess you guys just have to look a little further to get a better deal on education.
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Old 02-24-2006, 08:25 AM   #62
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International education is usually expensive, only because foreign nationals haven't contributed to the tax base that subsidizes that affordable education. But I'd be interested in some examples to the contrary, if anyone has some.

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Old 02-24-2006, 08:52 AM   #63
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Not to the contrary but the generous HECS student loan structure in Australia is definitely not extended to foreign students.
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Old 02-24-2006, 10:47 AM   #64
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International students will pay hefty fees in Canada and the UK, but you can still go to the top universities there for far less than the top schools, or even terrible private schools in the US.
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Old 02-24-2006, 12:47 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

there seemed to be the "rich kids" who's parents could pay for everything, and the "poor kids" who were there through grants and loans and sometimes full scholarships. so you have half the population who aren't affected, really, and the other half who are in theory, not all that affected because they get the money they need. and then the middle class kids who feel the genuine squeeze are too busy working their assess of day and night to have much time to organize.

just a thought.
Not a thought, Irvine, you're spot on there! That's how it is at my school. The majority of the kids are "rich", meaning they've gone to private schools their entire lives, live in large houses, have their own cars, don't pay anything for their rent, etc. Then there's the people in my situation, who's parents aren't considered poor, but aren't going to pay for their kid's college even if they can. So I'm missing out on a lot of need-based aid because they're looking at my dad's income, which doesn't help me one bit because he's still putting two younger kids through the top high school that costs over $7000 a year per kid. Then, this is what really pisses me off about my school, there's the kids that are considered the poor/minority kids, but the truth is they're not. We have this Mosaic program for kids that are anything but white (being a Dutch college, we basically have to pay people that aren't white to come to our school). To get the Mosaic scholaship, you have to be not white and have a 2.5 GPA. This scholarship is worth $3500 a year. If you are white, you're not elligable so they are looking only at academic merit. To get the same $3500, you have to have a 3.5 GPA, a full point above the Mosaic. Now, I'm ALL FOR setting aside scholarships for minorities, but I don't understand why everyone is not held to the same academic standards. Also, most of the Mosaic kids, while not white, were either adopted from India or Korea and raised by Dutch CRC families exactly like mine, or they are from very wealthy families in Asia or Africa and they've had no problems affording boarding schools in London, etc. before coming to college.

It's just so frustrating that they never seem to be considering the right criteria when determining aid. Why does my dad's income matter? Why not mine? Why do I have to be a full GPA point ahead of everyone else to get the same about of academic scholarship as my friend who was raised in the same community with the same religion and the same Dutch names just like the rest of us, except she was adopted from Bangladesh when she was 7 weeks old?

And now I'm even more pissed off because our new issue of the school paper says tuition will be another $3200 more next year for a grand total of $27,510 per year. Not that I need another reason to be glad I'm on my last semester.

Also, in response to going international, I'm sure the schooling is cheaper, but there are the added costs of visas, passports, plane tickets, probably higher rent prices, utilities, health insurance, trying to get a job in a foreign country, etc. that all add up. Through my school, we can spend a semester pretty much anywhere we want in the world and the school sets it up so that we pay normal tuition to them, but they make all the arrangements with the local school. We have programs that regularly go to Honduras, China, Korea, the Netherlands, France, Spain, London, and Ghana, but you can apply for other places. I went to Tanzania for a month and my friends have gone to Italy, Belize, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic, Tibet, Australia, etc. So there are plenty of opportunities that certainly don't cost MORE tuition-wise, but the travelling expenses really add up.
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Old 02-24-2006, 01:11 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
another thought on Melon's post and the lack of generational organization -- it seems to me that there's very little of the middle left

....

and then the middle class kids who feel the genuine squeeze are too busy working their assess of day and night to have much time to organize.
That pretty much describes the middle class in overall society, not just school. The smaller ruling class has always depended on the much larger working class to be too busy eeking out existence to change the rules.

Although I would say American middle class numbers are still HUGE. It just takes more, much more to stay there these days because the drop below middle class is steeper and faster without many ways to get back up.
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Old 02-24-2006, 02:10 PM   #67
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Quote:
Originally posted by AliEnvy


Although I would say American middle class numbers are still HUGE. It just takes more, much more to stay there these days because the drop below middle class is steeper and faster without many ways to get back up.
In some of my business classes, I've heard articles say that many middle-class families are only a paycheck or two away from poverty.
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Old 02-24-2006, 02:24 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally posted by LivLuvAndBootlegMusic


In some of my business classes, I've heard articles say that many middle-class families are only a paycheck or two away from poverty.
take a look at this little piece from newsweek:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7936464/site/newsweek/
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Old 02-24-2006, 09:09 PM   #69
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And when you're done with schools, you get to buy a house.

With affordability at it's lowest level on record.

http://www.nahb.org/news_details.aspx?newsID=2093
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Old 02-24-2006, 09:39 PM   #70
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I go to public school but in a lot of ways I'm surrounded by the same type of people you describe LivLuv...it's a rich county in general and a lot of the kids feel so entitled, don't even think twice about getting a car the day they turn 16, and know their parents will pay for whatever college they can manage to get into. Whatever I may resent them for, I have to say that my parents have struggled A LOT to keep us in this school system. And yet I think that just going on income level I doubt I'll be eligible for anything aid based, from what I've heard about what's necessary to qualify. Even if I have to completely pay for my own education as I'm assuming I will.

I just feel like it's going to be frustrating to possibly not go to the best college I could be admitted to, in trying to plan ahead financially...and to see kids who I can compete with academically have no trouble affording it, not even having to worry about it.
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Old 02-24-2006, 10:50 PM   #71
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Quote:
Originally posted by LivLuvAndBootlegMusic


In some of my business classes, I've heard articles say that many middle-class families are only a paycheck or two away from poverty.
That can happen at quite a large range of incomes. It is more a function of spending at or above income levels.
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Old 02-25-2006, 11:40 AM   #72
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Very interesting topic. Thanks for bringing it up. I'm happy to read all of the responses.

"Generation Debt" is nothing new. It's been a concern ever since Generation X went to college in mass numbers over twenty years ago.

As many of you know, I went back to college as a non-traditional student. I'm now paying of huge student loans and am trying to find a decent job somewhat in my field and having a great deal of difficulty.

Liv, you brought up a good point about need-based aid and scholarships going to minorities. I really don't have too much of a problem with this. I went to a college with a strong minority population and I'm better for it. I'd hate to go to a "princess school" where students get everything handed to them on a silver platter.

Though I had and still have a modest income, I couldn't get a great deal of grants to help with my tuition (mostly due to the fact I don't have dependent children). Most of my tuition was paid through student loans and a small scholarship the school provided. Plus the bank of Mom and Dad helped out a wee bit. I did look into scholarships for non-traditional students but most of those were for single parents including single moms who have as little as a 1.5 GPA. WTF? Why is a GPA that would land any childfree person on academic probation rewarded if you're a single mom? Plus what an insult to single moms with stellar academic records!

Anyway, I digress.

What's really sad that the good, promising entry to midlevel jobs that were so plentiful to newly minted grads a couple of generations ago are so far and few between these days. Furthermore, new grads have to jump through so many hoops just to get any type of job-drug tests, background checks, "personality" tests, etc. Thirty, forty years ago all a new grad had to bring was a pulse.

Plus, I'm sick of going to interviews where there is thinly veiled contempt for me going to college late in life and working as a temp. Yes, this coming from people who did nothing more than drink the bong water in college. Even my extracurricular activities mean nothing to some interviewers.

What's going to happen to America, if it doesn't tap into the intelligence, skills, creativity, and ambition of educated people of all ages? I shudder at the thought.

Recently, a local news program featured a segment on well-educated women leaving Milwaukee because they can't get the jobs and promotions they deserve. I may join them. What's going to be left in Milwaukee if this happens? A lot of confused men and bimbos?

Another good point brought up, is people needing to be more politically active and making sure our politicians are aware of these situations. During the 2000 Presidential election I wrote an opinion piece on how the media should examine why so many young people don't vote. If anyone would like me to post it, I will.
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Old 02-25-2006, 04:48 PM   #73
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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.


When I was an undergrad, I worked weekends (Fri. nights, Sat. and Sun.) at restaurants - often long hour shifts. So my weekends were gone for the most part. Sometimes I'd have off on a Sat. afternoon. But I usually had the week off to study. After I turned 21, I also had some fun.

I didn't get straight A's by any means, but I did well enough to pay for my own schooling (did take 5 years as I had to go part-time one year to get more $$), get a car, have a "B" average (which was good enough to get me into grad. school) and have a B.S. in science - where there were long labs! Plus, I still had some time for fun.

If a student wants to drink 4 years away, that's their choice. I know of some who did plenty of drinking, yet still had good grades and are smart people. But not everyone is like that.

That said, I would contend that if I had weekends off, I probably would've done better in school as an undergrad. So I will argue that working, more than drinking, hurts.
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Old 02-25-2006, 05:59 PM   #74
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon
International education is usually expensive, only because foreign nationals haven't contributed to the tax base that subsidizes that affordable education. But I'd be interested in some examples to the contrary, if anyone has some.

Melon
Scottland.

University of Abberdeen, University of Edinbouugh, Glasglow...

All very cheap by american standereds and all amazing schools.

I was seriously considering them but then a waitlist came through and I just narrowly decided to stay in the states.
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Old 02-26-2006, 08:55 PM   #75
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
I go to public school but in a lot of ways I'm surrounded by the same type of people you describe LivLuv...it's a rich county in general and a lot of the kids feel so entitled, don't even think twice about getting a car the day they turn 16, and know their parents will pay for whatever college they can manage to get into. Whatever I may resent them for, I have to say that my parents have struggled A LOT to keep us in this school system. And yet I think that just going on income level I doubt I'll be eligible for anything aid based, from what I've heard about what's necessary to qualify. Even if I have to completely pay for my own education as I'm assuming I will.

I just feel like it's going to be frustrating to possibly not go to the best college I could be admitted to, in trying to plan ahead financially...and to see kids who I can compete with academically have no trouble affording it, not even having to worry about it.
The one piece of good news is this, if you won't qualify for need-based aid based on your parent's income, chances are you WILL qualified for co-signed student loans.

What I did was accept all the student loans from the gov't that my school sets up automatically and then look elsewhere. I have about $15,000 in loans from CitiAssist and I think they're the best because you're not locked into an interest rate, you can defer payments until 6 months after graduation, they have low interest rates, and you get interest breaks when you pay automatically or pay a certain number of times on time. I've borrowed from them 6 different times (with my dad as co-signer, so it's based on my parent's credit) and only once was rejected because my dad had changed jobs very recently for the third time in two years (what they didn't realize on paper was that there was a series of acquisitions, etc. that changed his company's name and his status).

If you're in my boat, my advice is, you know you're already screwed financially, so I just say fuck it and do what you want with your education because you don't get a second chance. Go to the good school you want to go to and do the program abroad even if you have to borrow more. I had to borrow $3600 for my month-long study in Africa and it was worth every penny.
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