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  • graduate school debt nytimes article

    We should be thankful physicians have a high paying job after incurring debt.

    Academy of Art San Fran average total debt after master's = $100k. USC debt for masters in social work = $109k.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/03/upshot/student-debt-big-culprit-graduate-school.html

    Market forces messed up thanks to federally guaranteed student loans.

  • #2
    Many times masters grad school is the backup plan when the result of the bachelors degree is “unemployment “.
    Hmm, so you can’t find a job might as well incur some debt.

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    • #3
      So my kids class watched this in preschool and he wanted to do it at home. I appreciate that it is a fun activity that gets them moving even though they think they are watching TV. However I keep thinking that this is what you end up doing with a 100k theater major degree.

      https://youtu.be/dNL6RwymoNg

      They also do dance videos to pop songs and such. I thought it was odd when my 5 year old asked to listen to Footloose.

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      • #4
        I still have no idea what about social work requires a masters. Not hating on social work at all, I just don't understand how more school would make you good at it

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        • #5
          https://www.socialworkguide.org/degrees/masters/

          Maybe a bachelors degree gets you a job like probation officer or children’s protective services or a state job processing assistance programs for elder care. Hey, it’s online and you get to work in a hospital or schools or a clinic. Credentials.

          I don’t mean to be snarky about the work. Teachers run into the same. A masters automatically pays more, you have the credentials.

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          • #6




            Market forces messed up thanks to federally guaranteed student loans.
            Click to expand...


            I agree that the guarantee of loans makes it easier to get them, but the market is skewed by far more than that. The student has to take some responsibility here, and the graduate schools should be offering counseling and stats on likely job opportunity and salaries. Sites like Glassdoor make this information relatively accessible.

            So, why do students keep taking on the debt? The bottom line is that our trending progressive culture makes it more acceptable for twenty somethings to be in college and grad school than learn a trade, regardless of economic facts of life.

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            • #7
              A lot of the issue stems from the narrative of the 70s 80s and 90s where if you have a college degree of any kind you will get a reasonably decent job. This narrative is no longer true, yet I'm not sure some parents understand that.

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              • #8
                Most people either do not understand or ignore big numbers.  They look at 100K of debt on a 40K salary and barely think twice.  Monthly payments seem a little more real to the average person but even those can be skewed by extending the debt out over 30 years and income based repayment programs.

                When someone signs up for more debt maybe attaching what the added monthly repayment cost will be might help make it more real?  Maybe if students could not defer payments until after their education is complete it would help make it more real?

                This is how people get into credit card debt.  When you do not have any immediate consequences it is easy to push it off to next month and then you are underwater.  Students can do this for year and "wake up" with hundreds of thousands in debt.

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                • #9
                  Okay, so we've established that it seems foolish to sign up for $100k+ of debt for a job market that doesn't pay enough to justify the costs (even though most jobs demand higher education).  SO..what do we do about it?  Are we seriously going to start telling all of our kids that their only option is to either go to trade school or no college at all?  They can't all be doctors either.  As a society we kind of need educated people in certain roles right?  I mean, we NEED teachers, psychologists, social workers, etc.  We can't expect them all to just disappear and turn into plumbers and electricians.

                  Personally, I see the problem as two sided.  One, the federal government probably shouldn't be in the student loan business as they are now. And two, the schools themselves are to blame for jacking up their prices to take advantage of all the federally backed debt being thrown at students.

                  So, what do we do about it knowing that we need educated people in our society?  I don't know.  Perhaps the feds need to regulate how much debt they are willing to guarantee? Right now the sky is the limit and people can borrow stupid amounts of money with absolutely no care in the world as to what they'll be making when they graduate.

                  This is a big problem that could directly affect all of us as we age.  It's already almost gotten to the point where medical school is not worth the costs unless you can get into a sub-specialty making big bucks.  The result is we now have nurses taking over the role of primary care docs and this will continue.  Most of us will need medical care at some point in our lives.  Do you really want a nurse to be your PCP?  You might not have a choice in the near future.  And that's just one example.  Don't you want your kids going to schools where the teachers are actually bright, brilliant people?  Why would a bright, brilliant person sign up for a life of crushing debt?  We're steering our best and brightest away from vital roles in society.  We should all be very alarmed by this.

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                  • #10
                    You tell your kid to examine the costs and potential pay of any job. Going to school for 4 years doesn't have to cost 100k. Go to your in state, state university, get a job during school and you can go for 10k/ yr probably. So if you're 40k in debt for a 40k/yr starting job, not so bad.

                    Are you going to go to random fancy liberal arts college for 200k to make 40k? No but IMO these are crappy schools anyway and I still have no idea why anyone goes to them. Microscopic expensive private colleges seem almost inherently pointless to me. Bad academics, decreased opportunities, I really don't see any positives.

                    And no I don't think it takes a bright brilliant person to teach kids out of a book. I also don't think it takes a bright brilliant person to be a doctor.

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                    • #11


                      A lot of the issue stems from the narrative of the 70s 80s and 90s where if you have a college degree of any kind you will get a reasonably decent job. This narrative is no longer true, yet I’m not sure some parents understand that.
                      Click to expand...


                      I am not sure a new graduate can comprehend that that things will change again. For example, changing majors. Was it dorm talk, twitter or facebook? Congrats class of 2019! One persuasive post or article does not provide "recency" from being overweighted.

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                      • #12




                        Personally, I see the problem as two sided. One, the federal government probably shouldn’t be in the student loan business as they are now. And two, the schools themselves are to blame for jacking up their prices to take advantage of all the federally backed debt being thrown at students. So, what do we do about it knowing that we need educated people in our society? I don’t know. Perhaps the feds need to regulate how much debt they are willing to guarantee? Right now the sky is the limit and people can borrow stupid amounts of money with absolutely no care in the world as to what they’ll be making when they graduate.
                        Click to expand...


                        I can see this point of view.

                        Get feds from trying to give loans and guarantee it. Education should be priced differently for different disciples. Let us start seeing colleges start taking some risk and having a skin in the game.

                        I like the approach Mitch Daniels, president of Indiana University. Pay back the loan when you start earning income, as a % of your salary. So an engineering degree will cost you 3% of your income per year for the next 10 years. The liberal arts degree holder will pay 10% per year, since his earning potential will be less.

                        The colleges can set their loan limits. They will find that people will want to pay less and enroll in the the programs that lead to higher paying jobs. As less people want to take up sociology or psychology or some other field that pays less, the colleges may have to cut the tuition costs of those programs, prune some of them, consolidate some of them into one campus to make it cost efficient.

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                        • #13




                           

                          Are you going to go to random fancy liberal arts college for 200k to make 40k? No but IMO these are crappy schools anyway and I still have no idea why anyone goes to them. Microscopic expensive private colleges seem almost inherently pointless to me. Bad academics, decreased opportunities, I really don’t see any positives.


                          They exist and flourish because people are willing to pay it.

                          I went to a big state U.  My tuition and fees was about 6-7K a year.  Room and board cost more.  I just looked it up and it is now 10K a year.

                          A friend from High school went to a small liberal arts college because they gave him a full ride scholarship.  However tuition was over 40K.  His education was no better then mine.  He has less debt then I did because he had the scholarship but many of his friends did not have assistance and are in major debt or had wealthy parents who foot the bill.

                          I realize that there cannot be a spot for every kid at a state school but if you are not able to get in maybe that is a sign that higher education may not have the ROI you are expecting.  Education is important for a society and I do not think the government should decide who gets one and who does not but we need to do a better job of deciding for ourselves.

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                          • #14
                            The Department of Education recently released 2015-2016 educational debt data.  Attached is a quick sort of highest debt.  It's my understanding that this captures principal only - probably added another $60k to $70k accrued interest for those around $400k.

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                            • #15
                              I knew a guy from undergrad who went to Ross and got hosed.  He did not match and gave up after a few attempts.  I loss contact with him but I cannot imagine what you do with 300-400K in debt and no job.

                              I urge caution to those considering the Caribbean schools.

                              400K debt with a 200K salary is one thing.

                              400K debt with a 40K salary is something else.

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