The first one is from Joanne's site:
A Missouri high school teacher owes the federal government $410,000 for student loans. Liz Kelley, 48, hasn’t made a single payment, so the interest keeps mounting.She got a bachelor's degree in English in 1994. She enrolled in law school, adding to her debt. She quit law school and took on more debt to get a teaching credential. Upon becoming a school teacher she went to grad school in order to get a pay raise. When the 2008/2009 recession hit, she and her husband lost their home and their marriage broke up; this allowed her to defer paying for three more years. She can't defer any longer and now owes over $400,000. She currently teaches at a parochial school.
If she found a public school job, she could use income-based repayment, which would link her payments to her income and erase the remaining debt after 10 years. “But that would still mean a decade of what she describes as ‘futile’ payments that won’t even cover her monthly interest expenses, leaving nothing to put away for retirement.” Carey writes.I don't think I'm hard-hearted for having no sympathy for her--she hasn't paid a cent on her student loans, and interest has been accumulating for 21 years now. I think she should pay her bills. That doesn't make me hard-hearted, that makes me an adult. Her sob story is straight out of this Toad the Wet Sprocket video (from 1:00-1:07). She probably wants Uncle Sugar to forgive her debts and cleanse her of her bad decisions, to that I say boo-freakin'-hoo and no-freakin'-way.
Our next story, which is slightly more sympathetic, comes from CNN/Money:
For the past 20 years Susanne Walsh has been dreaming of a retirement where she'd travel the world.Does it surprise you that one of those sons majored in something ending in "studies"? And he's having a hard time of it with his career in Hollywood.
Unfortunately, those retirement plans are now on hold -- indefinitely.
That's because Susanne and her husband Bill helped pay for their two sons' college education and even cosigned on some of their student loans. Despite graduating with four-year degrees, neither of them have found stable jobs.
Now Bill and Susanne are shouldering the brunt of roughly $189,000 in combined student loans.
To help support their sons, the couple also has a side business providing editing support for a technical engineering journal.I just don't understand how college students can be adults--they can vote, they can sign contracts, they can join the military--but they're not held responsible for paying for their own college degrees. Why, for chrissakes, are parents expected to pay for college? Why does a parent's income factor into financial aid at all, just because the colleges can get away with it? That just sounds like a racket to me. That's bad enough, but Bill and Susanne also cosigned for their sons' student loans, which makes them financially responsible for those loans.
This, boys and girls and parents, is why the only people who should go to college to self-actualize are those who can afford to. The rest of us should get a degree in something that will allow us to be financially responsible, contributing members of society.
Yes, college costs are too high. They aren't going to get any lower by forgiving student loans, making college "free", or any other of the wacky ideas that many people, mostly on the political left, are tossing around lately. If you can't afford Expensive Private University, they you don't go to EPU. End of story. By the way, for those who worry about a "quality" education, the two most intelligent people I've ever known both went to state schools here in California. Both got engineering degrees, and both have been very successful--including financially--in their respective fields. There's more to it all than the school name listed on the sheepskin.
In closing: make good decisions. Pay yo bills. Be an adult.