My Master's Degree Wasn't Worth It: Students Tell Their Stories

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by overedge, Feb 2, 2013.

  1. Prancer

    Prancer Ray Chill Staff Member

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    I believe, although I might be wrong, that student loans are handled separately. If you want to get the debt reduced, you have to go through the student loan agency, not the bankruptcy court. The fact that student loan debt can't be erased by bankruptcy is often cited as one of the reasons that loaning agencies are disinclined to work with struggling debtors.

    OTOH, you can go through bankruptcy in the US without losing everything.

    I think that's very true. I thought that was especially true in the case of the first guy in the link, who got an MBA and another master's and then applied for jobs only in New York.

    Just on principle, I would expect someone with an MBA to make better business decisions.

    Personal experience always varies, but with all due respect, if you didn't get your master's in the US in this economy, I don't think your experience is particularly applicable to the situations faced by the people in the link.

    I think the same is true of undergrad education. I never know whether to laugh or scream when people here post things like "When I got my degree (30 years ago), I paid my own way by working summers and it was good for me and what's wrong with kids today who move back in with your parents because you can't stand to give up your big screen TV and free laundry?"

    College costs in the US have increased 1,120% in the last 30 years and it is much harder to get scholarships and aid than it used to be. That's a lot of what's wrong with kids today.
  2. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    Not only can they not be reduced or forgiven via bankruptcy, but they often can't be reduced or forgiven by death! The student loan companies continue to go after the parents when the former student dies in many, many cases. (There are petitions all over change.org about this.)
  3. escaflowne9282

    escaflowne9282 Well-Known Member

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    How is that possible? In most states, under Trust and Estates law, one cannot inherit a debt. Loan companies can sue the Estate of a decedant; however, if the decedant either has no Estate or no sufficient assets within the Estate to cover said debt, and the person is not a minor, the loan company would be SOL. The only caveat I can think of is if the parent co-signed the initial loan, in which case they agreed to assume that responsibility.
  4. *Jen*

    *Jen* Well-Known Member

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    :eek: :scream:


    Actually, I've checked and you can in the UK too, especially if there are kids involved or that some of your assets might help you claw your way out of debt in the future, i.e. tools for work. Many lenders will secure their loans in the first place so that they get money ahead of other creditors in bankruptcy but student debts, even at their new inflated value, are much lower than in the US so might be paid off at some stage.

    Of all the issues I have with my home country, I can't find much fault with the Australian education system. The secondary system is SO much better than the UK, and the tertiary system, at least at the time I went through it, meant I could defer payment of ALL my undergraduate fees and as long as I'm not working in Australia and paying Australian tax, I'm not paying it off. It's frozen. There's inflation, but no interest, and if were unemployed and broke it would be no big deal. The loan is from the government and they'd get it back from me when I was able to pay.

    I have an American friend who doesn't think she can have kids because she can't afford them with all her debt obligations. I find that pretty sad :( I'm glad I'm not in that position, because looking at 20 years of loan repayments for a degree like her is just frightening. By the time she's paid them off, most of my friends in Europe will have paid off their mortgages!
  5. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    I'm one of the ones who got a college degree 35 years ago and while I agree tuition is higher now I'm curious as to why. One article I read said that schools are adding too much fluff such as sports teams, jacuzzis, health clubs etc. because the competition to attract students has increased.

    Rising administrative costs are also cited as a reason. I would think technology would help administrative overhead and yet it seems to have done the reverse.

    I also see colleges hiring many instructors as part-time independent contractors. That should reduce costs. It isn't increasing job opportunities for their graduates.

    Perhaps colleges and universities have become too big and are trying to offer too much. If they aren't affordable to the majority of students what good are they?

    The article also stated that easy availabilty of student loans is what has fueled the increased competition for students and the increased expenditures by universities to attract them.

    As a tax payer I am thinking that defaults on student loans is another debt crisis getting ready to explode.
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
  6. Anita18

    Anita18 Well-Known Member

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    Some undergrads end up paying five-figures, six-figures for their bachelors. That is inexcusable. But yes, graduate school is even worse!

    One has to wonder what kind of research they did on the program. Owing $50-60K at the end of a master's is not unheard of (it often assumes that you weren't able to pay ANYTHING during the few years you were there), but twice that is just befuddling to me. I suppose there are always outliers (again, never know who might end up in the hospital and unable to go to school), but I agree it really is not normal.

    Exactly. I'm not sure which school the guy in the article went to, but they must have told him NOTHING about scientific careers.

    Determine if she likes going out in the field vs staying in and teaching. At many places, you can do both, but if she doesn't want to teach, she should go into industry right away. Sure, a PhD gives you more time to "figure things out," but if you decide to not go into academia, you're often overqualified (and thus unhireable) for anything else.

    Might be different in Canada though. I would still encourage her to take an internship somewhere, even if it's unpaid. Even when I was in undergrad and the economy had not yet gone down the crapper, most lab internships were unpaid. Experience doing science is extremely valuable if you're a fresh grad.

    And it's harder in general to get into the schools which are need-blind and have enough money to give to their students as grants. And even those institutions who have that policy, have decreased funds too so they can't give as many grants as they used to. When I graduated in 2006, there was talk of a financial aid war (of sorts) between a lot of the top universities, to see who could give more grants to low-income students. Stanford even proposed that any student whose parents earned less than $60K would go to Stanford for free. When the economy went bust, of course that proposal did too.

    So I think many institutions understand that it's difficult to pay for college now, and want to help, but the economy has affected them as well. It sucks all around.
  7. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    Ding, ding, ding. We have a winner.

    The vast majority of student loans are co-signed by a parent because the vast majority of students have no assets or income. But most parents aren't thinking "this means I have to pay this loan off for 10 years if my kid dies" because who thinks their kid is going to die? You figure you are signing in case your kid is out of work for a while and you might make a few payments until he gets another job, not 10 years of payments for a dead kid, every month you write the check being reminded that you outlived your child and that you are paying for something he's never going to use.

    It may be legal, but I think it's inhumane.

    Don't believe everything you read. ;)

    When I was in school, it was emphasized over and over that our tuition didn't even begin to cover the real costs of our eduction. The difference was made up through alumni contributions, government grants, corporate donations, etc. Those sources aren't what they once were and tuition has to be raised to make up the difference.

    This isn't to say that colleges are perfect and don't waste money. But the institutions I'm personally familiar with certainly aren't country clubs that are wasting tuition money right and left. Most of them are struggling.
  8. 4rkidz

    4rkidz GPF Barcelona here I come

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    I wasn't commenting in reference to the link but to the other poster.. but I do have a question.. can't students today do their degree or your master's part time (thus pay as they go) ? I did (technically don't graduate till the spring) my Master's part time in my 40's .. my undergraduate part time in my 30's and my diploma part time in my 20's .. college costs all over the world have increased - fair enough not as much as in the States.. but when I'm hiring social workers I would much rather the staff have a BSW and years of experience than MSW with no experience.. I'm not as familiar with the education field having joined it fairly late (6 years ago).. but I don't see a graduate school education paying off so much in Canada (well other than keeping teachers in jobs ;) ).. the exception being the science field where the field is constantly changing..
  9. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Maybe:

    The linked article on hardship discharge gives some actual examples of successful and unsuccessful attempts to get the bankruptcy court to discharge student loan debt under this provision. (So likely bad news for MacMadame's ex-boyfriend, were he to have filed for bankruptcy because he was struggling financially and wouldn't take a job with the tobacco industry, because the court could tell him to suck it up.)

    Even when they're not low from private lenders, with rare exceptions, the interest is compounding while it is deferred, unless the interest is paid during the deferral period. Here's one example from an online interest calculator.

    From the article above, for a private loan,

    This is critical, because lenders for other things know that there's someone above them in the pay-back hierarchy, if the borrower has financial issues.

    For the private loan in the article above,

    Not only was the co-signer someone who made $21K/year as a gardener, they loaned money for an education in music, not a profession that generally has particularly high salaries that would support the equivalent of a mortgage payment before an actual mortgage payment or rent without a high-earning spouse, independent wealth, or inheritance.

    I'm not sure what the regulations are for all types of student loans, but the petitions I saw used Reymoso case as a call to action; here, the father co-signed the private loan, and struggled with the help of lawyers to find out how much his son owed and to whom. Co-signees normally aren't absolved of debt if the other co-signer(s) die, unless there are specific provisions. From the Reymoso article linked above:

    I'm guessing the private student loan lenders who do offer debt discharges have default insurance in place in case of the death of the student, and I suspect this is built into the loan rate.
  10. centerstage01

    centerstage01 Well-Known Member

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    Basically what I'm taking away from this thread is that there's no point in getting any advanced degree unless you are 100% guaranteed you've got a job waiting for you once you've got that diploma. Or unless you are so financially well-off that you can absorb those costs regardless of field of study and can sit back and enjoy the learning process.

    I got my bachelor's degree 15 years ago but am wanting to make a career change because what I'm doing now is no longer personally fulfilling. I have been considering going back to school to get a second bachelor's but after reading all the posts here why bother? The economy blows, I have no desire to get thousands of dollars in debt only to discover there are no jobs available, or get (or keep) a job in something I do not like or enjoy just so I can keep a roof over my head. That thought is so soul-sucking depressing. It doesn't help when I see friends and family losing their jobs because of downsizing or "corporate restructuring" or just closing their doors altogether. I'm not going to lie, I'm not seeing a lot of positives for the future and that's frightening. So when I read about people saying their advanced degree isn't worth the paper it's printed on, why should anybody bother?
  11. Anita18

    Anita18 Well-Known Member

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    It depends if you need the degree to make that career change. I'm making a career change too, but my new field (graphic design) does not require a specific degree. You only need to prove experience and the ability to do the work. Now, if I wanted a position at a renowned design firm, a degree from RISD or SVA would be preferable, but it's only a shortcut to get my foot in the door. If I put in enough time and prove myself with my work and network out the wazoo, I probably wouldn't need the degree even in that case.

    Now, if your career change involves being a doctor or lawyer or some other position where you need to have the degree/certification to practice, obviously you have no choice. But most people do have the choice, and the degree no longer guarantees anything. Ability, experience, networking, and referrals will get you MUCH farther than a degree will.

    I'm still taking classes because I think I need to learn more about design, and more practice is always better. If you feel you need to learn more, you should take classes at a community college to learn the basics. But IMO another bachelor's isn't worth it. There isn't enough real-world practice in a bachelor program to make it worthwhile. And I sure am not going to shell out $100K to get another bachelor's at an art school. Not when I'm 10 years behind the graduates already.

    It doesn't have to be depressing. You just have to choose well and be adaptable. Alf has quit jobs twice in the past 4 years, and now he's freelancing. Now, his current chosen field is booming and pays a good wage even for fairly inexperienced freelancers, and not everyone can do it (he's a iPhone app programmer), but it is possible and the future doesn't have to look so bleak. :)
  12. MacMadame

    MacMadame Internet Beyotch

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    Because not everyone is a stoner who blames their inability to get job interviews on having got a masters in science? ;)

    Seriously, there are people out there finding jobs and there are people out there losing jobs. If you want to change careers, you need to find people who have done it and figure out what they did that is different from the people in this article. And learn from any mistakes that the people who lost jobs or didn't change careers successfully might have made.

    One thing that is different is that most of them don't go into massive debt. That doesn't mean they don't go into any debt or their re-education was free. But they are realistic about what the new career pays and use that to guide their educational choices.

    Another thing that is different is that most people who are successful at changing careers get a lot of work experience in the new career as part of the change-over even if they have to do unpaid work via volunteering or internships. Sometimes they can even convince their current job to give them job duties that get them closer and closer to the new career as well.

    Or you can bitch and moan about how impossible it all is and let fear keep you from making any move at all. Right now that's the choice I'm making but I figure I'll start job hunting again soon enough. :lol:
  13. madm

    madm Active Member

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    An alternative to getting a master's degree after completing the bachelor's is to go to a junior college to get a certification in a field you want to work in. This is a pretty cheap way to get additional training or to be re-trained. My daughter did this to get a veterinary technician certification after her bachelor's in biology, and she worked full time as a vet assistant at the same time. Sometimes it makes sense to get a certification in something so you can get hired. If she had stayed at the vet clinic instead of starting vet school, she would have made an additional $5/hr just by being a certified vet tech. The bottom line is that you may need to get a license or other credential in your field in order to get hired. Having only a bachelor's degree doesn't automatically make you qualified for jobs in many fields.
  14. susan6

    susan6 Well-Known Member

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    Well, it depends on how much the degree is going to cost. As people have mentioned, graduate school in many of the hard sciences is "free"....you will be supported as a teaching assistant or a research assistant, which involves the department or your research advisor paying all your tuition and giving you a stipend on top of it. That stipend is going to be small, but you can live on it, as long as you don't have several kids and a spouse who is not working.

    As for the 100% guarantee of a job....that's not available for anyone in any field, really, unless you have a relative who is hiring and doesn't mind nepotism. Even in the hard sciences, grad students have to realize that you will have to apply to many companies/schools/whatever and be willing to relocate.
  15. Prancer

    Prancer Ray Chill Staff Member

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    It depends on whose argument you most believe, but I think all would agree that it is a combination of factors. Some blame government aid, some blame admin cost, some blame retirement and benefit packages for faculty, some blame student demand, some blame the cost of technology, etc., etc. All colleges are suffering from a drop in non-tuition funding, whether it be endowments or state funds. Education is expensive at all levels, but the higher the level, the higher the expense.

    Issues also vary from school to school; some are administered better than others. One of my friends used to teach for a private college that charges very high tuition, but she was always having to watch her cash flow carefully because the same school often couldn't meet payroll.

    Well, you may not be thinking that, but you sure should be thinking "I will have to pay this off if for any reason my kid can't--or won't." Death is not the only reason that student loans don't get paid and if you co-sign, you are on the hook.

    Or you can find someone else to pay your way through. Or you think the odds are in your favor and you will earn more. Or you can afford to take the hit if the degree doesn't translate into more money.
    Maofan7 and (deleted member) like this.
  16. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    It really depends on the program. There are quite a few graduate programs in Canada that you can attend part-time, but in some of them you're paying up front, or a good chunk of the payment up front, regardless of how much of the program you're actually doing at the time.

    I don't know if you're talking about graduate programs in education or graduate programs generally. But despite the stories in the article, IMO in Canada there are a lot of fields where a graduate degree is really helpful. And not just to have some letters to stick after your name. And even in education specifically, there is a lot more changing than just science, e.g. online learning, administration skills.
  17. madm

    madm Active Member

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    I disagree. There is value in getting a master's degree if you want to pick up more education in a different field (e.g. to combine two disciplines like science and writing), or if you want to further your knowledge in a specific area. Not all undergraduate degrees prepare you for a specific career, like dietician or physical therapist. In those fields, you have to go on to get more education after the bachelor's degree. In psychology, you have to get a PhD to practice as a clinical therapist.
  18. flowerpower

    flowerpower Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, professordeb and 4rkidz, for the helpful information.
  19. nlyoung

    nlyoung Active Member

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    Sorry to be picky, but Dalhousie University is in Halifax, NOVA SCOTIA ;)
  20. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    I must admit, the photo of the guy in the last story on p. 2 (the chemist who is making furniture) - seriously? There's a story on a major website about your troubles getting a job, and you can't even be bothered to provide a semi-professional looking photo of yourself? If that's how much effort you put into presenting yourself as a credible potential employee, I wouldn't hire you either.

    And the first guy in the story - I work in a post-secondary business school program, and I've never heard of either of those schools or their master's programs. When school reputation/visibility plays a BIG part in the impact of a business-related master's degree on your career/earnings....I feel bad for the guy being $120K in debt, but I also can't help but feel that maybe he didn't do enough research on these schools before shelling out that kind of $$$. Both of his programs might have been really good programs, but if the schools/programs are not well known, that's a lot of wasted money.
  21. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

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    In the US, you don't have to prove that you're credit worthy to get government backed student loans. As another poster said, this is because historically, it was a good bet for lending institutions to give loans to students, as they'd get that money back in most cases, and for the rest, they'd cover via the interest charged to all lendees.

    In addition, the government backed students loans are guaranteed by the US government. Private student loans are not, but things like the Stafford are.

    US students cannot use federal financial aid to pay for degrees they get abroad. However, they can use private student loans to do so. And as you said, the cost of foreign masters degrees is significantly less than those from a US university. For example, I looked at a specific masters in the US. The unis around me offer it for about $80,000 total tuition, not including living expenses. If I did it from the U of Leicester in the UK, even paying international student rates, it would cost me $10,000 total tuition.

    Both his bachelors and his masters are from schools with poor reps in the NY area. I'm sure that's not helping him.

    As has been said, you've hit the nail on the head. Debt of this size requires private student loans. Private student loans require a co-signer, which will normally be your parents. If you die, and don't pay this debt off, your co-signers are responsible for it. In fact, a lot of financial advisors advise parents who co-sign to take out life insurance on their student, in an amount that would cover this debt should the student die.
  22. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

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    They *really* are not.
  23. ross_hy

    ross_hy Active Member

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    I definitely see every side of this. I don't know if my MBA will ever pay for itself in my field (retail), but it does have two upsides. One, it didn't cost me anything; I'm very fortunate that my mom worked for the school. Second, it allowed me to respectfully get out of my first post-undergrad job that I hated.

    I would definitely recommend to anyone in undergrad to use internships and part-time jobs to help decide what you want to do after you graduate. whether it's a career or further study. I wish I had done more of the same. Some job paths are so hard to break into even if you have education and experience in other fields; it seems like undergrad internships would be a great way to get your foot in the door. I've said in other threads that I want to be a retail buyer but since I don't have a fashion-related degree or corporate office experience, it's been really hard to get noticed. I've seen online programs I could do, but I really don't want to go $30K in debt to do it, especially when they're only AA or BA programs.
  24. Anita18

    Anita18 Well-Known Member

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    So his claim that he was overqualified is perhaps a bit overstated? :saint:
  25. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

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    You don't need to have majored in anything specific to become a buyer. So maybe an undergrad certificate in a related field would be enough to nudge your resume in that direction. It'd certainly cost a lot less than $30k.

    The Fashion Institute of Technology, which is a highly respected fashion school, offers both credit and non-credit certificates online, related to different aspects of fashion. They also offer classes which you can take on their own and add to your resume. What I like about them is that you don't need a ton of classes to get a certificate, and even if you're out of state, their tuition is fairly reasonable.
  26. mrr50

    mrr50 Well-Known Member

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    I need to explain myself a little more. My Master's was earned 34 years ago in physiological chemistry(think Krebs cycle etc.) my bachelor's was in clinical dietetics. The hospital decided I was going to be the metabolic unit dietitian therefore, the masters. I enjoyed doing it, but would have been quite happy to remain in the position I had. The most amusing part of my story is that the masters degree program i took, no longer exists.

    The reason I wanted to explain things a little more it that it appears my story is not fitting today's master's degree problem.
  27. professordeb

    professordeb Well-Known Member

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    You are absolutely correct and I don't know why on earth I typed that in except to say my SIL lives in Moncton NB. Thanks for the wake-up call. My daughter would never let me live that down if she had read such :D
  28. Japanfan

    Japanfan Well-Known Member

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    I believe that exceptions can be made when the circumstances are extremely extenuating - such as being completely paralyzed in a car accident. There used to be a system in place for getting a loan forgiven in Canada, but I don't think it is in place anymore.

    Some efforts are being made to include student loans in bankruptcy - or so says Suzie Orman. But in my experience part of the problem is that *some* students don't see student loans as legitimate debt in that they don't think they should pay it back unless they get the job and salary they believe they should get from their education. Of course, it doesn't help that student loans are so easy to get.
  29. cmchan

    cmchan New Member

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    Do you have retail/factory level experiences? If not, it will be very difficult as you will start out as an assistant with very low pay. You do not have to go to school for this, although it will be harder. But as far as I know, most people that works in this field started out this way, designers excluded. There are specific reasons for this as you will need the experiences to do the job, majority of the experiences are "as things happen" you learn the mistakes. You can PM me if you have specific questions, I been in this field for few years. I am pretty much the exception though, didn't graduate in this field but just stumble in worked from the bottom up.
  30. NinjaTurtles

    NinjaTurtles Teenage Mutant

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    Community counseling woman really only has herself to blame; a little research into the industry would have alerted her to a better path for being in the "counseling" (or mental health) professional. I can appreciate that the many different types of degrees out there for counseling can be confusing, but it's pretty foolish to take on debt without having good working knowledge about the field you're tying to get into.
  31. modern_muslimah

    modern_muslimah Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure about Canada, but before the law was changed to exclude student loans from being discharged in bankruptcy, the number of students who were abusing bankruptcy laws to get out paying their student loan debt despite having adequate means to pay them was minuscule. I haven't met anyone who thinks that they shouldn't pay back their student loan debt because they don't have a job making $100,000 or higher. Still, it's very difficult to pay back tens of thousands of dollars of debt if the only job you can get pays minimum wage or is part time. For people in this situation, there are hardship deferments that postpone payments until a time when a student is financially able to pay back the debt. People know they will have to pay their debt back. It's one of the reason why young people like my niece are postponing college. As for certain student loans being easy to get, I think other posters have already pointed out the reasoning for this: it's assumed that students will be able to get employment to be able to pay the debt back. Of course, the current recession is making it harder for graduates to get employment or employment that pays enough to start paying off the loan right away.
  32. madm

    madm Active Member

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    For students going to U.S. professional school (e.g. veterinary, medical, law), getting a Federal Stafford Loan is the most sensible way to pay the $20K+ (in-state) or $40K+ (out-of-state) tuition per year. These students cannot work during school due to the full-time course load. To get the loan, all one has to do is fill out a FAFSA form and send the result to one's school. The school sends out a financial loan eligibilty email to the student, he or she accepts or declines the loan offer(s), and voila, the school gets the tuition money from the government each term and the student begins a life of massive debt. The student has to pay interest during the four years in school, and has 6 months after graduation to start making payments per several payment plans. Hopefully these students do have a realistic chance of getting gainfully employed at a decent salary!!!

    The only fully funded professional school option I know of is to commit to work for the military after graduation. I believe there is a four year commitment required. And then there's the loan forgiveness program, which allows students who've made 120 monthly loan payments post graduation and who work in a public service job to "forgive" their remaining debt after 10 years.
  33. 4rkidz

    4rkidz GPF Barcelona here I come

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    deleted...
  34. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    According to this article in salon.com, Students loans: The next housing bubble", in this example of funding law school,

    If this is true, then a school could make a student eligible for all kinds of money without needing to go for private loans.

    The main author of the study cited is the Director of the Center for College Affordability & Productivity, Richard Vedder, who's also an adjust scholar for the conservative think tank, the American Enterprise Institute.
  35. altai_rose

    altai_rose Well-Known Member

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    Nope, there's also my program (Medical scientist training program) for combined MD/PhD. Fully funded tuition + stipend for living expenses. Well, in the US, most (all?) PhD programs in biological sciences are completely funded with stipends.
  36. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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  37. Anita18

    Anita18 Well-Known Member

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    Correct. "Stipend for living expenses" is definitely right, though. You don't get a lot of money, but you also won't go into debt.

    Although, the postdocs get paid less than I do, and I am a tech with only a BA. I won't get the degree at the end, but eh, I'm lazy. :p My boss finally got a salary higher than Alf, an engineer with a BS, when he became a PI and got an NIH grant when he was nearly 40. It isn't exactly lucrative, but at least you won't be drowning in debt. Unless you decided to get a master's before your PhD, in a separate program. :lol:
  38. ioana

    ioana Well-Known Member

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    That would depend on people's spending habits ;). Several students in my Applied Maths Masters program lived off campus, instead of our grad dorm and that meant they had to pay more their house shares/apartments and they had to own a car. I know at least two of them took out $5,000 loans (per year) mostly because they didn't want the stress of living from paycheck to paycheck. Of course $10,000 for a Masters degree is a reasonable amount, but it still seemed like an unnecessary expense that could have been avoided.
  39. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    Feb 1, 2007
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    11,072
    Between grants and stipends one of my friends made so much while she was getting her PhD (medicinal chemistry) that her post doc pays her HALF of what she got here, and now she live in a more expensive city. Post docs get screwed, I'm so glad my husband found a 'real' job and got to skip that!

    My husband was on a decent stipend or grant (he lost his stipend when he got his grant, his advisor wasn't as generous with the money as the friend above) when he got his PhD- as much as I made at my first job. I got my Master's degree when he finished- paid cash, and figured with his new salary, if we didn't change our living expenses we wouldn't notice the money flying out the door because of the increase in income (I kept working full time.) Plan worked and I was able to get a new job with the Master's (I literally had the degree conferred the day I started the job, they wouldn't have considered me without the degree) and the increase in salary will pay off the master's in two years (assuming I don't also increase my spending, which probably won't happen as we are tired of student living.)
  40. Anita18

    Anita18 Well-Known Member

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    We don't have a grad dorm here, so everybody's screwed. :lol: