Today, New York University costs around $43,000 annually for tuition alone. When I attended over 10 years ago, it was closer to $30,000 annually. If either of those two numbers make you feel short of breath, join me on the floor.
I was able to attend such an expensive school through a couple of scholarships, my parents’ generosity, and student loans. Hella student loans. These days, student loans dominate my entire life. I wish I were joking about that. While I sometimes feel regretful about making such big financial choices when I was young, dumb and 17, I try to remind myself of all the opportunities that I’ve had in life because of those choices. Maybe if I had gone to UCONN, the state school in my home state, I would have gotten a full ride or paid off any loans by now — but I also can’t say how my career would have gone.
But I certainly do wish I had gone through college behaving differently towards money. Here’s a couple of things I wish I’d known so I didn’t have to learn myself the hard way:
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Ahhh, student loans. Or as I like to think of them, that giant hole where I pour hundreds and hundreds of dollars every month. I hope you can buy some fancy couches for the student center, NYU! Imported South African sea salt for the cafeteria? Gold-plated BIC pens for every librarian in the library? Whatever you do with
my your money, I’m sure it’s money well spent. And yes, it will keep coming, probably until I die. The sad truth is that I speak on the phone with the loan servicing lady more than some of my relatives.
Three colleges are not content to just have their loan serving office keep broke grads on speed dial — now, they’re lawyering up. Keep reading »
I’m not even going to sugarcoat it: I’m basically the poster child for the white girl from the suburbs whose dad just took care of all the bills growing up and never taught me anything about finances. They were traditional that way: Dad handled money stuff and Mom handled childrearing stuff. My parents never gave me spending money and I always babysat and worked after school jobs. However, other than generally teaching me that I had to earn my own money, neither of them talked me to at all about saving, investing, 401ks, interest rates, or any of that other its-like-speaking-another-language stuff. I had to read blogs and buy books to myself about money (Nice Girls Don’t Get Rich by Lois P. Frankel is a good one). Still, I wish I’d made some financial decisions differently. (Luckily, I’m only 27, so it’s not too late to start!) Keep reading »
Education is supposed to enrich our lives and make us more worldly and learned. But for many of us, higher ed just brings on thoughts of debilitating debt and crashing credit scores. According to the Project on Student Debt, the average 2009 graduate owes around $24,000 after graduation. But that’s nothing compared to the astronomical amount of school debt Kelli Space has. Keep reading »
You’ve worked hard through grad school, but when you’re ready to graduate there are NO jobs in your field. Should you get a refund on your school tuition? It’s a radical thought, but that’s what one student at Boston College is proposing. The anonymous student wrote a letter to the dean of Boston College Law School, where he is a third-year law student, and lamented that despite doing well in school he’s been unable to secure a position. In the letter, the student outlined the difficulties he and his fellow classmates were having finding a job, and added that his failure to land a gig will make it difficult to support his pregnant wife. Keep reading »
Millions of college students cringe at the word “FAFSA”—-fun to say, not so fun to fill out. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid helps a large number of students pay for college…after they’ve spent hours answering questions, nagging their parents for tax info, and enduring an experience close to torture. But it looks like the financial aid future is getting a lot brighter. Starting today, the U.S. Department of Education debuts a new, less aggravating, shorter FAFSA. Keep reading »
College students in the UK are getting sick of working their butts off and struggling to make loan payments, so more are turning to sex work in order to pay off their debt more quickly (while it may be quick, it’s certainly not painless). The number of students working in the sex industry has risen from about 4 percent in 1999 to an estimated 8 percent today, according to research by Kingston University in London. “What we can definitely say is that as long as student debt increases, so will the numbers of students entering the [sex] industry,” said Dr. Ronald Roberts, the psychologist leading the research. “Since the introduction of tuition fees in 1998 there has been an increase in students undertaking this kind of work.â€ It’s sad, but true that these women could work a legitimate job for much less, but, as Catherine (not me), who works as a prostitute, said, â€œI choose to have a job where you can make a lot of money in a few hours and then actually have time to do my uni[versity] work properly.” Study hard! [Times Online] Keep reading »