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Should College be Free?


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#51 Coops

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Posted 25 January 2016 - 10:50 PM

I don't understand why people think that all colleges have to cost the same. People have a choice. If they want to go to a school where they have to go into debt, it is their prerogative, but they sure as hell have to pay for it. If they want one that wont cost them money (or as much money) thats fine. For example, I had lots of scholarship options to upper tier undergrad universities, could have attended an ivy (and paid through the nose) but I chose to stay in state, and go to a college where they paid my tuition, books and then wrote me a check for $11,000 every year. The scholarship was only slightly more than 20k/year, but it was still much more cost efficient than going to the other schools offering me 25-40k a year (because their tuition was stupid high). You never have to pay that much money for school.

Actually, some people do. Take me for example -- I've been forced to move twice since my husband is in the military. Not being a resident in any state I live in, or having any contacts at a new university really cuts down your chances at getting specific types of scholarships. It eliminates me attending universities that award scholarships for graduating in-state, or for being a student for multiple years, etc. It also means I lose credits with each move and subsequent transfer. It means my previous grades mean shit-all. I tried getting the military spousal assistance for tuition, you know what they told me? No. Because I wanted a bachelor degree. Like how dare I actually wanna get a four year degree?

I had a scholarship in the town I graduated in for freshmen year. But see, my dumbshit parents planned for my eldest sister (and no one else) to go to college. But she dropped out. And my scholarship, for my banging SAT score only covered half my tuition cost, that's in-state, by the way, at a low level shit university. The rest, I paid for by working full-time at Walmart, while doing chemo and school full-time. I didn't get a dime of government assistance because my parents "made too much" (even though they were, at that time, on the lower end of middle class).

When I moved to Alaska, it was great. I managed to get three years of my degree done with only 12k of debt. I didn't get scholarships because well, there aren't really many unless you're native or you graduated in-state. But then we got relocated to VA. Now my tuition is 3x what it was in Alaska at a public, state funded university (not one of the good ones either). My new university is 40 minutes away (that was the closest one with the program I needed) and it's 4 thousand+ for 12 credits of lower-level courses. And because we're just barely over the line to qualify for Pell Grants, I may not be able to finish school. I sure as fuck can't work. I just had brain surgery. Even if I could, it would be damn hard to find a job with a wage to afford 4k per semester.

I'm not saying it should be free. But it should not be this goddamn hard. There are circumstances, believe it or not, that make getting scholarships very challenging or that make school very inaccessible. And the government is making fucking bank off my desperation and the desperation of people like me, who just want so dearly to change their lives, or fulfill themselves through their passions (mine happens to be science, I feel bad for you artists and musicians out there). 



#52 testing321123

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Posted 26 January 2016 - 07:43 AM

Currently in university/college, have a study debt of approximately $20,000...
One side of me wish that it would be free, so i wouldn't be so burdened by the debt.

 

The other side of me wishes it wouldn't be free, else the country's min. education would go up again.

Not that it's bad generally speaking, but the job market is so competitive right now. If the min. education goes up again, it'll be even harder to get a proper job.
And the next "tier" of attaining a good job, would probably require you to get a Masters :\

 

It's a never-ending chase. Most of us go into college to get a degree, so that we can get a better job. (Since we're above average compared to others)

But if more people get into college and get a degree, having a degree becomes the norm. You wouldn't stand out from having a degree, job market becomes even more competitive...

 

So...
Yes and No.

Yes, for lesser burden

No, so the job market would not be even more competitive.



#53 Kaddict

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Posted 31 January 2016 - 09:48 PM

Actually, some people do. Take me for example -- I've been forced to move twice since my husband is in the military. Not being a resident in any state I live in, or having any contacts at a new university really cuts down your chances at getting specific types of scholarships. It eliminates me attending universities that award scholarships for graduating in-state, or for being a student for multiple years, etc. It also means I lose credits with each move and subsequent transfer. It means my previous grades mean shit-all. I tried getting the military spousal assistance for tuition, you know what they told me? No. Because I wanted a bachelor degree. Like how dare I actually wanna get a four year degree?

I had a scholarship in the town I graduated in for freshmen year. But see, my dumbshit parents planned for my eldest sister (and no one else) to go to college. But she dropped out. And my scholarship, for my banging SAT score only covered half my tuition cost, that's in-state, by the way, at a low level shit university. The rest, I paid for by working full-time at Walmart, while doing chemo and school full-time. I didn't get a dime of government assistance because my parents "made too much" (even though they were, at that time, on the lower end of middle class).

When I moved to Alaska, it was great. I managed to get three years of my degree done with only 12k of debt. I didn't get scholarships because well, there aren't really many unless you're native or you graduated in-state. But then we got relocated to VA. Now my tuition is 3x what it was in Alaska at a public, state funded university (not one of the good ones either). My new university is 40 minutes away (that was the closest one with the program I needed) and it's 4 thousand+ for 12 credits of lower-level courses. And because we're just barely over the line to qualify for Pell Grants, I may not be able to finish school. I sure as fuck can't work. I just had brain surgery. Even if I could, it would be damn hard to find a job with a wage to afford 4k per semester.

I'm not saying it should be free. But it should not be this goddamn hard. There are circumstances, believe it or not, that make getting scholarships very challenging or that make school very inaccessible. And the government is making fucking bank off my desperation and the desperation of people like me, who just want so dearly to change their lives, or fulfill themselves through their passions (mine happens to be science, I feel bad for you artists and musicians out there). 

That is a rough set of circumstances to say the least, things I hope on no one. I do think that the way the state should help is by providing more subsidized loans (where you don't have to make payments and no interest accrues until you graduate). I feel that way it relieves burdens of students, but isn't going to cost the country so much stupid money. They don't even have to worry about it until they are able to work full-time (if they can find a job in the already saturated market that is). Also, I think people (not everyone, just many) tend to take their education for granted when they don't pay for it.



#54 Bone

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 07:44 AM

Currently in university/college, have a study debt of approximately $20,000...
One side of me wish that it would be free, so i wouldn't be so burdened by the debt.

The other side of me wishes it wouldn't be free, else the country's min. education would go up again.
Not that it's bad generally speaking, but the job market is so competitive right now. If the min. education goes up again, it'll be even harder to get a proper job.
And the next "tier" of attaining a good job, would probably require you to get a Masters :\

It's a never-ending chase. Most of us go into college to get a degree, so that we can get a better job. (Since we're above average compared to others)
But if more people get into college and get a degree, having a degree becomes the norm. You wouldn't stand out from having a degree, job market becomes even more competitive...

So...
Yes and No.
Yes, for lesser burden
No, so the job market would not be even more competitive.


That's horribly selfish.

As a person who ended up with more than $100,000 in debt after receiving more than $25,000/year in scholarships, yes I think college should be free. It's a must for a just and equitable society.

There are universities I probably would have been accepted to, and would have loved to attend, that were out of the question to even apply to because I knew I wouldn't be able to afford them. I would consider going to grad school or joining the Peace Corps or doing something other than full-time work, but that won't be an option for me for at least ten years because of my debt burden.

All this for my economically illiterate 17-year-old self wanting to leave my hometown (I probably would have killed myself by now if I didn't) and to get a quality education. If that's not fucking depressing I'm not sure what is.

#55 ortin

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 08:38 AM

Why has the cost of higher education, even adjusted for inflation, been going stratespherically up?

#56 Romy

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 08:42 AM

Why has the cost of higher education, even adjusted for inflation, been going stratespherically up?

Because public universities realized that government funding is not enough to keep themselves running.

The government has opted to gut higher education instead of increasing the level of funding it needs. So who pays the difference? We do.



#57 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:14 PM

That's horribly selfish.

As a person who ended up with more than $100,000 in debt after receiving more than $25,000/year in scholarships, yes I think college should be free. It's a must for a just and equitable society.

There are universities I probably would have been accepted to, and would have loved to attend, that were out of the question to even apply to because I knew I wouldn't be able to afford them. I would consider going to grad school or joining the Peace Corps or doing something other than full-time work, but that won't be an option for me for at least ten years because of my debt burden.

All this for my economically illiterate 17-year-old self wanting to leave my hometown (I probably would have killed myself by now if I didn't) and to get a quality education. If that's not fucking depressing I'm not sure what is.

 

Isn't joining the Peace Corps supposed to help get into grad school?

Maybe I read about it wrong.

 

We don't have it here but I wish we did I'd join in a heartbeat. 

 

I've heavily considered joining the Armed Forces here to get lower tuition but then I have to learn to shoot a gun which terrifies me. 

 

My grandparents have always reinforced that if/when I graduate they'll pay off my student loans but I never wanted to go to a school that was super expensive or one that I had to move for because they'd take that cost on themselves.

I was accepted into a few schools in the US and two in Australia. I applied because I didn't realize just how expensive it would actually be.

The Australian schools offered really cool scholarships because of my grades and international status but it would still be WAY more expensive than staying where I am. 

As for going to the US, to go to any of the schools I looked at well I could get a full undergraduate degree, masters and PH.d for the cost of a year at one of these schools. Some of them charging well over 100k and that's before you even want to feed yourself.

What a joke. Especially when I see some of the stuff schools spend money on that is just so unnecessary when you know students are suffering to even live and study. 



#58 Ali

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:21 PM

Useful degrees, yes. People should be encouraged to be doctors, scientists, engineers etc. at universities with a teaching quality that will set them up for a decent career.

 

Nobody should have contributed to me dicking about playing violin for 4 years. I'm an entirely useless member of society.

 

I quite like the way UK student loans work. Tuition gets paid directly to the uni, you get a "maintenance loan" to your bank account on a termly basis, you start paying it back as a percentage of your salary once you earn above a certain amount. If you haven't paid it back after a certain amount of time (25 years?), the remainder of your debt is written off. Economically, it's not that sound as plenty of people won't finish paying it back but it does afford basically everyone the opportunity to go to whatever university they want.



#59 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:26 PM

Useful degrees, yes. People should be encouraged to be doctors, scientists, engineers etc. 

 

Nobody should have contributed to me dicking about playing violin for 4 years. I'm an entirely useless member of society.

 

I quite like the way UK student loans work. Tuition gets paid directly to the uni, you get a "maintenance loan" to your bank account on a termly basis, you start paying it back as a percentage of your salary once you earn above a certain amount. If you haven't paid it back after a certain amount of time (25 years?), the remainder of your debt is written off. Economically, it's not that sound as plenty of people won't finish paying it back but it does afford basically everyone the opportunity to go to whatever university they want.

 

So do you pay off just the maintenance loan part? Sorry I kind of don't follow xP

 

Our student loans get paid directly to the school also, most of the time. Mine always have been and the first year I didn't know that so I paid the school twice and thought I was gonna be SO poor and starve the first term of uni. lmfao. 



#60 Ali

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:29 PM

So do you pay off just the maintenance loan part? Sorry I kind of don't follow xP

 

Our student loans get paid directly to the school also, most of the time. Mine always have been and the first year I didn't know that so I paid the school twice and thought I was gonna be SO poor and starve the first term of uni. lmfao. 

No, you pay both tuition and maintenance back, it's just you never see the tuition part yourself. Tuition is currently a max of £9,000/year which was a big increase a few years ago. When I was at uni (2007-11), my tuition was slightly over £3,000/year. The maintenance loan varies, you get a much bigger loan if you live in London.

 

We essentially have a graduate tax that kicks in at a certain salary threshold.



#61 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:31 PM

No, you pay both tuition and maintenance back, it's just you never see the tuition part yourself. Tuition is currently a max of £9,000/year which was a big increase a few years ago. When I was at uni (2007-11), my tuition was slightly over £3,000/year. The maintenance loan varies, you get a much bigger loan if you live in London.

 

Ohhh okay I just was just wanting clarification.

 

That is a massive increase from 3k to 9k *_* wtfffff



#62 Ali

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:37 PM

Ohhh okay I just was just wanting clarification.

 

That is a massive increase from 3k to 9k *_* wtfffff

Tuition fees only came in in 1998, until that point university was free. They came in at £1000, tripled to £3000 in about 2005 (@Waser Lave, were you on cheapy fees?) and then tripled again to £9000 in 2010.



#63 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:40 PM

Tuition fees only came in in 1998, until that point university was free. They came in at £1000, tripled to £3000 in about 2005 (@Waser Lave, were you on cheapy fees?) and then tripled again to £9000 in 2010.

 

I started Kindergarten in 1998 lmfao. 

 

Also I just remembered the exchange rate and holy sh!t. I could not be in school for how much it is there.

 

@Emily is your masters hella expensive!?!?!



#64 Waser Lave

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:42 PM

Tuition fees only came in in 1998, until that point university was free. They came in at £1000, tripled to £3000 in about 2005 (@Waser Lave, were you on cheapy fees?) and then tripled again to £9000 in 2010.

 

Sadly no, I'm a mere babe, I'm afraid. Mine were around £3k and I ended up with about £15k of student loan debt when graduating. Then I got a full scholarship for my masters along with a £6k stipend which kept me in noodles for the year.


@Emily is your masters hella expensive!?!?!

 

She'll be paying even more because she's an international student, probably upward of £10-15k a year I suspect.

 

 

I started Kindergarten in 1998 lmfao.

 

I started high school in 1998. <_<



#65 Ali

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:47 PM

Sadly no, I'm a mere babe, I'm afraid. Mine were around £3k and I ended up with about £15k of student loan debt when graduating. Then I got a full scholarship for my masters along with a £6k stipend which kept me in noodles for the year.


 

She'll be paying even more because she's an international student, probably upward of £10-15k a year I suspect.

You must have been the first year to pay our increase, no?



#66 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:54 PM

Sadly no, I'm a mere babe, I'm afraid. Mine were around £3k and I ended up with about £15k of student loan debt when graduating. Then I got a full scholarship for my masters along with a £6k stipend which kept me in noodles for the year.


 

She'll be paying even more because she's an international student, probably upward of £10-15k a year I suspect.

 

 

 

I started high school in 1998. <_<

 

I didn't know badgers lived into their 30's or that they ate noodles.

 

Damn. I am learning so much from this thread why am I in school?



#67 Waser Lave

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:57 PM

I didn't know badgers lived into their 30's or that they ate noodles.

 

Damn. I am learning so much from this thread why am I in school?

 

Cheeky wench, I ain't 30!

 

You must have been the first year to pay our increase, no?

 

No idea, first or second year I think. I wasn't paying much attention at the time. :p



#68 Ali

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:04 PM

Cheeky wench, I ain't 30!

No Methuselah, you're much older. <3



#69 Rocket

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:06 PM

I really wish college was more affordable or even free would be fantastic. I would consider going back in a heartbeat to get a degree in Accounting or something related in that field. But as it stands, it's not worth it to put myself in so much debt. 

After I graduated high school when I went to college, for all of one year, I paid myself (not my parents) out of pocket (while working full time) because I didn't qualify for assistance and wasn't looking to take a loan at that time. I worked full-time and ended up learning everything I know by on the job training/experience. If I had a degree I could be paid more definitely and would broaden my options job wise, but as far as what I know and what I've been doing for the past 10 years, I think I'm doing well without any formal college training.



#70 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:08 PM

Cheeky wench, I ain't 30!

 

 

No idea, first or second year I think. I wasn't paying much attention at the time. :p

 

If you started high school at 15/16 and that was 18 years ago, you are indeed in your 30's. 

I am very bad at math but not that bad!!!!!!!!!!!



#71 Waser Lave

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:09 PM

If you started high school at 15/16 and that was 18 years ago, you are indeed in your 30's. 

I am very bad at math but not that bad!!!!!!!!!!!

 

We start high school at 11!! You had me worried I was going senile there...



#72 Emily

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:11 PM

I started Kindergarten in 1998 lmfao. 

 

Also I just remembered the exchange rate and holy sh!t. I could not be in school for how much it is there.

 

@Emily is your masters hella expensive!?!?!

 

Worth it. 



#73 Waser Lave

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:19 PM

Worth it. 

 

You'll probably think differently after you graduate and you compare the A4 piece of paper certificate you get at the end with your bank statement. :rolleyes: I didn't even get a stupid t-shirt. <_<



#74 Emily

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:20 PM

You'll probably think differently after you graduate and you compare the A4 piece of paper certificate you get at the end with your bank statement. :rolleyes: I didn't even get a stupid t-shirt. <_<

 

Even when I'm broke and homeless, still worth it. 



#75 Padme

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Posted 01 February 2016 - 01:25 PM

We start high school at 11!! You had me worried I was going senile there...

 

Ohhhh so you're ALMOST 30 :p .

 

Can we have a birthday party????

 

I'll buy you a muff diver. :) 




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