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Student Loan Debt Hell: 21 Statistics That Will Make You Think Twice About Going To College

Is going to college a worthwhile investment?  Is the education that our young people are receiving at our colleges and universities really worth all of the time, money and effort that is required?  Decades ago, a college education was quite inexpensive and it was almost an automatic ticket to the middle class.  But today all of that has changed.  At this point, college education is a big business.  There are currently more than 18 million students enrolled at the nearly 5,000 colleges and universities currently in operation throughout the United States.  There are quite a few “institutions of higher learning” that now charge $40,000 or even $50,000 a year for tuition.  That does not even count room and board and other living expenses.  Meanwhile, as you will see from the statistics posted below, the quality of education at our colleges and universities has deteriorated badly.  When graduation finally arrives, many of our college students have actually learned very little, they find themselves unable to get good jobs and yet they end up trapped in student loan debt hell for essentially the rest of their lives.

Across America today, “guidance counselors” are pushing millions of high school students to go to the very best colleges that they can get into, but they rarely warn them about how much it is going to cost or about the sad reality that they could end up being burdened by massive debt loads for decades to come.

Yes, college is a ton of fun and it is a really unique experience.  If you can get someone else to pay for it then you should definitely consider going.

There are also many careers which absolutely require a college degree.  Depending on your career goals, you may not have much of a choice of whether to go to college or not.

But that doesn’t mean that you have to go to student loan debt hell.

You don’t have to go to the most expensive school that you can get into.

You don’t have to take out huge student loans.

There is no shame in picking a school based on affordability.

The truth is that pretty much wherever you go to school the quality of the education is going to be rather pathetic.  A highly trained cat could pass most college courses in the United States today.

Personally, I have had the chance to spend quite a number of years on college campuses.  I enjoyed my time and I have some pretty pieces of parchment to put up on the wall.  I have seen with my own eyes what goes on at our institutions of higher learning.  In a previous article, I described what life is like for most “average students” enrolled in our colleges and universities today….

The vast majority of college students in America spend two to four hours a day in the classroom and maybe an hour or two outside the classroom studying. The remainder of the time these “students” are out drinking beer, partying, chasing after sex partners, going to sporting events, playing video games, hanging out with friends, chatting on Facebook or getting into trouble. When they say that college is the most fun that most people will ever have in their lives they mean it. It is basically one huge party.

If you are a parent and you are shelling out tens of thousands of dollars every year to pay for college you need to know the truth.

You are being ripped off.

Sadly, a college education just is not that good of an investment anymore.  Tuition costs have absolutely skyrocketed even as the quality of education has plummeted.

A college education is not worth getting locked into crippling student loan payments for the next 30 years.

Even many university professors are now acknowledging that student loan debt has become a horrific societal problem. Just check out what one professor was quoted as saying in a recent article in The Huffington Post….

“Thirty years ago, college was a wise, modest investment,” says Fabio Rojas, a professor of sociology at Indiana University. He studies the politics of higher education. “Now, it’s a lifetime lock-in, an albatross you can’t escape.”

Anyone that is thinking of going to college needs to do a cost/benefit analysis.

Is it really going to be worth it?

For some people the answer will be “yes” and for some people the answer will be “no”.

But sadly, hardly anyone that goes to college these days gets a “good” education.

To get an idea of just how “dumbed down” we have become as a nation, just check out this Harvard entrance exam from 1869.

I wouldn’t have a prayer of passing that exam.

What about you?

We really do need to rethink our approach to higher education in this country.

Posted below are 21 statistics about college tuition, student loan debt and the quality of college education in the United States….

#1 Since 1978, the cost of college tuition in the United States has gone up by over 900 percent.

#2 In 2010, the average college graduate had accumulated approximately $25,000 in student loan debt by graduation day.

#3 Approximately two-thirds of all college students graduate with student loans.

#4 Americans have accumulated well over $900 billion in student loan debt. That figure is higher than the total amount of credit card debt in the United States.

#5 The typical U.S. college student spends less than 30 hours a week on academics.

#6 According to very extensive research detailed in a new book entitled “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses”, 45 percent of U.S. college students exhibit “no significant gains in learning” after two years in college.

#7 Today, college students spend approximately 50% less time studying than U.S. college students did just a few decades ago.

#8 35% of U.S. college students spend 5 hours or less studying per week.

#9 50% of U.S. college students have never taken a class where they had to write more than 20 pages.

#10 32% of U.S. college students have never taken a class where they had to read more than 40 pages in a week.

#11 U.S. college students spend 24% of their time sleeping, 51% of their time socializing and 7% of their time studying.

#12 Federal statistics reveal that only 36 percent of the full-time students who began college in 2001 received a bachelor’s degree within four years.

#13 Nearly half of all the graduate science students enrolled at colleges and universities in the United States are foreigners.

#14 According to the Economic Policy Institute, the unemployment rate for college graduates younger than 25 years old was 9.3 percent in 2010.

#15 One-third of all college graduates end up taking jobs that don’t even require college degrees.

#16 In the United States today, over 18,000 parking lot attendants have college degrees.

#17 In the United States today, 317,000 waiters and waitresses have college degrees.

#18 In the United States today, approximately 365,000 cashiers have college degrees.

#19 In the United States today, 24.5 percent of all retail salespersons have a college degree.

#20 Once they get out into the “real world”, 70% of college graduates wish that they had spent more time preparing for the “real world” while they were still in school.

#21 Approximately 14 percent of all students that graduate with student loan debt end up defaulting within 3 years of making their first student loan payment.

There are millions of young college graduates running around out there that are wondering where all of the “good jobs” are.  All of their lives they were promised that if they worked really hard and got good grades that the system would reward them.

Sometimes when you do everything right you still can’t get a job. A while back The Huffington Post featured the story of Kyle Daley – a highly qualified UCLA graduate who had been unemployed for 19 months at the time….

I spent my time at UCLA preparing for the outside world. I had internships in congressional offices, political action committees, non-profits and even as a personal intern to a successful venture capitalist. These weren’t the run-of-the-mill office internships; I worked in marketing, press relations, research and analysis. Additionally, the mayor and city council of my hometown appointed me to serve on two citywide governing bodies, the planning commission and the open government commission. I used to think that given my experience, finding work after graduation would be easy.

At this point, however, looking for a job is my job. I recently counted the number of job applications I have sent out over the past year — it amounts to several hundred. I have tried to find part-time work at local stores or restaurants, only to be turned away. Apparently, having a college degree implies that I might bail out quickly when a better opportunity comes along.

The sad truth is that a college degree is not an automatic ticket to the middle class any longer.

But for millions of young Americans a college degree is an automatic ticket to student loan debt hell.

Student loan debt is one of the most insidious forms of debt.  You can’t get away from student loan debt no matter what you do.  Federal bankruptcy law makes it nearly impossible to discharge student loan debts, and many recent grads end up with loan payments that absolutely devastate them financially at a time when they are struggling to get on their feet and make something of themselves.

So are you still sure that you want to go to college?

Another open secret is that most of our colleges and universities are little more than indoctrination centers.  Most people would be absolutely shocked at how much unfiltered propaganda is being pounded into the heads of our young people.

At most colleges and universities, when it comes to the “big questions” there is a “right answer” and there is virtually no discussion of any other alternatives.

In most fields there is an “orthodoxy” that you had better adhere to if you want to get good grades.

Let’s just say that “independent thought” and “critical thinking” are not really encouraged at most of our institutions of higher learning.

Am I bitter because I didn’t do well?  No, I actually did extremely well in school.  I have seen the system from the inside.  I know how it works.

It is a giant fraud.

If you want to go to college because you want to have a good time or because it will help you get your career started then by all means go for it.

Just realize what you are signing up for.

  • recent grad

    I agree with your assessment.

    I graduated with highest honors from one of the top 10 or so schools in the country.

    They are indeed indoctrination centers, especially the humanities and “social science” departments.

    As anyone who’s seen the financial collapse documentary “Inside Job” knows, the Economics departments might possibly be even worse – their propaganda is disseminated in direct exchange for cash from the top tiers of global finance. It is an utter shame. Late stage collapse kind of corruption and decline going on.

    I know many, many college graduates who cannot express coherent thoughts in English.

    I saw many affirmative action cases and athletes allowed to cheat and generally devalue my degree, for which I’m now 30k in debt, in front of my face.

    Don’t go into anything academic other than a STEM field, and, if you do, make sure you know what you’re signing up for and how you’ll pay for it.

  • pete bromley

    So true.I graduated magna cum laude with a BA in Political Science back in 1988 that I have essentially never used,except as a prerequisite for going to Marine Corps ocs back in 1989.I graduated in 3 instead of 4 years,won 2 scholarships and worked nights and weekends to pay for a degree that has served no real purpose.After serving in the Marines, I sold cars and managed car lots for 16 years,then did an apprenticeship/distance learning program and became a NC licensed/nationally board certified hearing instrument specialist.College was really just a waste of my time;everything I learned there I could have just as easily have learned reading on my own.The degree looks good on the wall though;hard to justify the waste of money and time,though college is a great place to get laid alot by a variety of young sexy girls…….

  • VegasBob

    Yes, college is a huge scam. I went to grad school in the late 80s – in a PhD program.

    I quickly learned that it was a scam – like a fraternity where the pledges (graduate students) do all the work (research) so the frat boys (professors) can stay drunk.

    A couple of professors stopped my dissertation proposal because they found out I had no student loans. Apparently, they resented the fact that I knew how to stay out of debt. So I walked away with a Master’s degree, and went back to corporate America.

    I never regretted that decision.

  • Shoal Creek

    Look into “Income Based Repayment.” See the details at http://studentaid.ed.gov/PORTALSWebApp/students/english/IBRPlan.jsp

    Yes, such a plan may bring the government down even more quickly, but then again, government interference helped the cost of higher education skyrocket in the first place.

  • Davey Jones

    I have been expecting you to write more about the student loan hell and to my interest you have and rather well I might add.

  • Anonymous

    I just turned 23 years old and will be graduating next month with a degree in biotechnology from a well-known state school on the east coast. Until January 2010, I had around $60k in student loan debt, primarily because I latched onto the proverbial pipe dream of a high paying job out of the gate, had overly hopeful and enthusiastic parents, and lacked a proper personal finance education.

    This debt would’ve been crippling for my parents as well (cosigners), as I’ve gathered that one should never borrow more than a first-year starting salary. In this economy, finding a science job with that type of starting salary would’ve been absolutely ludicrous.

    My point is that if high school counselors are going to continue indoctrinating young teenagers with thoughts of grandeur and unrealistic expectations, they should accompany it with an equal dosage of brutal honesty and pragmatism as to what the risks and rewards are. If I could turn back time, I would attend a community college for two years and transfer credits, as most of the gen ed courses are completely transferable.

    On many personal finance blogs I find that posts are often ‘preaching to the choir,’ as financially irresponsible people wouldn’t be reading these anyway. There has to be a paradigm shift in both the classroom and media.

    Well, that’s the end of my rant. I’ve spent my fair share of time chasing girls, drinking beer, and wasting time in college for a decent, yet unspectacular GPA. I’ve made some new friends, got rid of some old ones, kept some old ones, and stayed in touch with many thanks to the advent of social media like Facebook. All in all, this was a good experience…

    But was it worth my 60 grand?

    …Hell no.

    Note: If you’re curious as to how I managed to pay off the debt, don’t be. I won money from a lottery scratch off. There’s no special story, no tale of triumph, no test of wills. I got lucky, paid a stupid amount of taxes, paid off my debt, gave mom and dad some money, and banked the rest as a safety fund. And no, I’m not some degenerate who spends all his money in casinos and scratch offs…We were coming home from the school gym and I bought a 5 dollar ticket with my hot dog from the local krausers, as did 3 of my friends.

    As shameful as it would be for me to be unappreciative of dumb luck, it would be equally vulgar to disregard my bitterness for the system based on something I by no means earned. I guess you can say that about a lot of things in life.

    The end.

  • http://www.no2foreclosures.info DaVid

    Another Ponzi Scheme. Financial slaves produced in “factory education” system.

  • http://www.studentloanresistanceofamerica.com FrankyFreelance

    Thanks for the recommendation for the book “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses”. Here is a link to more information for it :

    http://ebookee.org/Richard-Arum-Academically-Adrift-Limited-Learning-on-College-Campuses_1127872.html

    I personally really benefit from book recommendation, and so I hope you will add more as you can in the future.

    I also agree with “recent grad”. I attended an “Ivy League” university and was appalled by the lack of seriousness of the students and the indoctrination going on.

    In fact, free thinkers are even SHUNNED in these institutions – as I found out the hard way. The “higher caliber” schools are generally just playgrounds for the kids of the wealthy, and their major function is to indoctrinate students into the “upper class”.

    Now, $50k+ later and having fled the country to get away from the tentacles of the student loan industry bloodsuckers I have realized that the main thing I learned from university is how important it is to value TRUE knowledge. That is, the knowledge you get from living in the world and struggling to maintain a free mind.

    On a positive note, I will say that I did have some very good professors – and found that usually EVEN THEY were aware of how low the general education level had sunk – but were trying to operate the best they could within the bounds of the system.

    The bottom line is that the “higher tier” educational institution of inherently set up for the kids of the wealthy (or even middle) class, who have the financial comfort to pay for the education without taking on debt. In addition, these students have the social background where they have been given a head start (either through better secondary education or the knowledge and skills which accompany having parents who are successful and have connections). These institution are REALLY not set up for that small % of students who have risen up through hard work from working class backgrounds.

    Personally, I agree with Einstein, who abhorred formal education. I think that by nature of pooling a bunch of people who have very different experiences, goals, etc. into one place and then teaching them en masse you will never allow them to develop their powers of free thinking. In other words, modern education is in essence, “McEducation”.

    But then again, formal education is really not about free thinking in a society which needs to mold its future citizens into cogs of the international corporate machine. Free thinking is actually antithetical to the “system” and is a luxury which is only really affordable to those who have the desire and means of living beyond that system and dedicating their lives to the pursuit of higher knowledge.

    JOIN THE RESISTANCE!
    http://www.studentloanresistanceofamerica.com

  • Kevin

    In all fairness I seen people going to college for nonsense. My good friend put his son through Temple University for film editing. The old man worked his tall off to give his kid a four year vacation from becoming an adult.

    Film editing; thousands of graduates and seven jobs.

  • Robert Arnold

    In 1968 when I started university, the state universities in Washington State did not have what I wanted to study nor did my parents nor I have the money for an out of state university, so I went to Berlin Germany where universities have free intuition, I even got into the free lunch program (a lot of pig stomach and potatoes).
    What I do not understand is why there is not more emphasis given to studying abroad, where it is free and a lot cheaper and in my case the university had a student work program, so when people needed a student worker from one day to a week, it would be posted in the office of the student work program.
    The education that I got Berlin was as good if not better than what I could get in the USA.

  • john w

    The Harvard entrance exam from 1869 does not mean much. Harvard applicants would still be able to do the math. They may not know Latin and Greek, but many may know Russian, Chinese or German, which are much more useful. The geography section was complete rubblish – a list of completely useless information. Thankfully schools no longer test that sort of thing. In 1869, few people went to high school, much less university, so the comparison is not very good – only the best educated would have applied to university. A better point (which you made) is that most people today shouldn’t bother with university – either they don’t need it or they are not really up to it. Instead, high school education should be upgraded – what Americans learn their first two years at college is what people in some countries have already learned in high school.

    Having said that, you should send this article to every newspaper in the country. I don’t always agree with you, but I enjoy all the information and hard facts that you compile. Unfortunately, on this site you are probably preaching to the converted. It would be nice if you could reach a bigger audience with some of your postings.

  • http://www.danielrevelationbiblestudies.com Robert Stout

    Great article!!! It’s better now to learn a trade, the US is becoming a service country instead of an industrialized country. Personally, I know dozens of people with college educations not able to find hardly anything in the work force! When the dollar totally collapses late in 2011 or early 2012, you will see financial devastation on a scale that cannot be measured!!! Most of the US citizens are totally oblivious of the coming financial downfall in this country and the world!!! Prepare today!!!

  • mondobeyondo

    And let’s not forget – student loan debt can not be forgiven or eliminated in bankruptcy court. It is with you until you pay it off, or for as long as you live, whichever comes first.

    It is an awfully high price to pay, for a 40 year career as a professional burger flipper…

  • C. Sharp

    Excellent article, as was your last one on the college experience.

    I have spent the last 10+ years teaching or studying at various colleges and universities, and I fully agree with this article. Actually, I don’t think it goes far enough. Every year I see something worse than the last, which is why I am largely leaving the profession.

    Many students don’t even bother the spell check their work anymore – yes, I mean they don’t even bother to press that button on their computer that spell checks their paper for them automatically.

    I have had my first student who can barely read, and I have had several foreign Asian students who can barely understand what I am saying to them – I am not exaggerating.

    The indoctrination programs are intense. As an undergrad 10+ years ago, I enrolled in one of the most radical Marxist colleges in the nation (I left when I suspected something wrong with this worldview). The propaganda I see on “normal” campuses now is the same as I saw at that self-consciously radical college just over a decade ago.

  • Tim

    “#1 Since 1978, the cost of college tuition in the United States has gone up by over 900 percent.”

    The National Inflation Association (NIA) is planning to release its next documentary about the college tuition bubble, “College Conspiracy”, in a few days. NIA predicts that many colleges and universities will close in the next few years.

  • flubadub

    If the students spend two to four hours a day in class what does that say about the work load of the highly paid professors and associates? The students aren’t the only ones having a good time in college. Many of these institutions have endowments worth tens of billions yet, as you’ve noted, tuitions are in an astronomical climb. It’s one big business that hasn’t yet been outsourced and one that has even been able to increase its foreign clientele. It’s too bad all those Indian, Chinese and Middle Eastern Engineering, Science and Physics graduates – the fields our homegrown Liberal Arts majors avoid – return to their respective homelands and use their American imparted technical knowledge to compete against us.

    If I owned a business that required some special skills chances are most of those skills wouldn’t be learned in college. No matter who I hired I or my other employees would have to spend some time training new people. Although a college diploma might indicate an ability to learn I could administer my own test designed to determine the specific aptitudes the job required. Since we’d have to do the training my plan would be to offer an apprenticeship to a good kid with no plans or means to attend college. He might not have as much fun as he would have in college but he’d spend four years earning and learning while avoiding the accumulation of student loan debt.

  • mark

    As a parent, I am willing to pay for my children’s college costs with conditions. The most important is to pick a major that they can support themselves. I will not pay for a hobby. If they want to learn a hobby, they can pay for it on their own. They do not need to go to the high priced schools. It is good for them to start low and work hard to improve their lot in life. They get a start without debt and it is up to them to go from there.

  • Mary T

    I am a physician and I thought about going to Johns Hopkins for additional training. I was shocked at how the Public helath classes had politically correct answers for many topics. Disagreement lead to lower grades. These are the people formulating our public health policy and it appears that they have no tolerance for differing opinions and they cannot even offer a respectful debate about the issues.

  • Federalist45

    I honestly believe that, whether intentional or simply a matter of fate, much of what concerns us here is the result of the long, slow slide into cultural hell that is a reality under Leftism. Colleges brainwash most students into a Leftist framework (college students were in part responsible for electing Obama, for goodness sake), using money from mom and dad or the taxpayer, neither of whom would consent to this use if they had it figured out, to do so.

    Mom and Dad pay Ivy U. $50K per year. Timmie is allowed to spend 20 hours per week on academics, most of which indoctrinates him into the Leftist world view. He then spends 60 hours exercising that Leftist world view to drink, do drugs, sleep around, and have other sorts of “fun.” And, if Timmie’s parents fit the right categories financially and socially, it is the taxpayer who foots the bill–the same taxpayer who, by his Tea Party affiliation, would never want his money paying for this scheme.

    In short, the Left has figured out (or fallen into a great deal) that it can bilk traditionalist Americans (the working Middle Class) to pay for the indoctrination of its minions. It is the redistribution of wealth from those who can to those who teach so that those who teach can screw the offspring of those who can. Great.

  • http://silverdollarcoinvalue.com Silver Dollar Value

    I spent 2 years in college before realizing it was an absolute fraud for the money they charge and teach you nothing. College only teaches you how to look for a job, but does not guarantee you will even get one. But they still got your $50k+ though…Have fun finding a way to pay it back. Instead, I have stopped “degree-chasing” for my employer (or future employers) and am now using my current job’s income to teach myself how to make money online and it only costs me a couple hundred bucks a year, income potential is unlimited, and I can create my own jobs. That’s a much better alternative for me.

  • Buy American

    When I was in High School (early 80s) there was a list that circulated as to which were the best party colleges. Many very brilliant friends chose universities based on this list and not based on the academic environment or other valid criteria. I truly believe many Universities offer a great education for the student who wants to take advantage of all that is offered. Many foreigners prefer US universities because of the educational infrastructure at these institutions. They return to their countries highly qualified for top jobs. Granted, there are some courses taught by post grads who really have little to contribute other than reading the text in the textbooks and grading papers, but for the most part, there is a lot available for one who is focuses on education.

    I sincerely thing the greatest problem is that our youth are mostly geared towards having “fun” and have no concept of the seriousness of life. Most cheat and pay others to complete their assignments, not realizing the only person they are cheating is themselves. In light of the economic storm approaching the US, most will wish they had learned something while at school when they face the harsh reality of a very competitive job market a few years from now. Employers will look for qualified candidates, ones that can prove they know their stuff. In Brazil, for example, if you want a job with the government or the oil giant Petrobras, you have to compete with thousands of other candidates by taking a very challenging test that covers a variety of subjects, just having a degree is not enough. Candidates for these jobs often spend months in preparation paying for specialized courses to prepare them. I can guarantee that most of these job candidates are far more qualified for any job in America than most of our college grads who coasted through college without any effort.

    Maybe in 20 years after we have had a dose of the bitter medicine of economic hardship the next generation of youth will realize they have to work hard to get ahead in life and strive to be at the top of their class at all costs. The question is, how many of these colleges will survive the crisis if the government stops subsidizing them?

  • Sarah Grooms

    Brilliant. I’ve been saying this for years. I think my story is similar to yours – went to a school I could afford and got done in three years because I would’ve had to go into debt for a fourth. Didn’t incur debt, didn’t party, studied, got through and did get a great job. You’re so right though; today’s grads know nothing when they get out. Also, our country does not put enough emphasis on tech schools, internships/apprenticeships, etc., which is where the growth will be unless a person wants to go into medical fields. Great post.

  • http://www.medical-marijuana-mentor.com Political Atheist

    “#1 Since 1978, the cost of college tuition in the United States has gone up by over 900 percent.”

    That’s funny. The Student Loan MARKETING Corp. AKA: SLM Corp, AKA: Sallie Mae was originally a govt. sponsored enterprise in 1972. Cheap, easy money chasing fewer resources = rising prices. Way to go, big gov!

  • http://www.medical-marijuana-mentor.com Political Atheist

    BTW, I decided instead of contributing to my nephews’ college funds, I’ll offer them money to go backpacking around the world. they’ll learn so much more about themselves and the world that than any text book.

  • http://www.pfxiforex.net/ Marc

    Well…we know from most research that this education is useless. However I still find in Canada (where I am from) that you need XYZ degree to work in certain fields. It is almost as if that industry is married to the college or university this way. I recently wrote to a job add saying that because of your criteria you automatically disclude someone like me who has over 25 years experience in social services. I went on to say that how many people have you disculded by putting in the word degree and in a particular area. We have seen time and time again that generally the most successful entreprenuers in our time shunned the educational system. In the hard sciences where you become a medical doctor, a physicist, chemist, pharmacist and other disciplines like engineering I can see it being important to have a certain knowledge base that can be obtained in school. The question even in these areas is can it be done cheaper and more efficiently? I would have to believe the answer is a resounding YES. These big name schools have become too powerful and too many of these grads end up in the political positions of power that keep the system the way it is. However tuition costs and expenses associated with your education are a completely different matter that has been created by ridiculous over spending and inflation over the past thirty years. The value of your dollar is what is causing this and it needs to be reversed and soon or our educational system will be forever shanged for the worse. Where the few will get a good knowledge base while the rest will get nothing. With the internet there is not reason at all for this outdated model to be sustained other than it empowers the same old cronies it has always empowered and will continue to empower until the younger generation says enough is enough.

  • Rowell

    I agree completely with this assessment. I attended a local college in the early 90’s. After 2 semesters, I was completely disgusted with what they were attempting to pass off as “learning”. If I didn’t already know what the professors were teaching, it was already out-of-date information. I decided to forego my remaining years in a college and jump right into the job market where I could actually learn in the field (computer programming). It was the best move I’ve made in my life.

    What has always bothered me though, in looking for work, companies put so much stock in degrees without understanding what a joke most colleges/universities are. My thought is, they just want to know you “paid your dues” and got your slip of paper. A stupid requirement from an era when higher education actually meant something.

    When I talk to friends and co-workers about getting degrees, I tell them that I’ll attend single courses to update my skillset, but anything beyond that (Bachelor’s, Master’s, etc) is simply a waste of my time and money.

  • http://www.gouldeyecandy.com GG

    Amazing blog! Every time I read articles on the waste that is ‘Higher Education’, & how, especially these days, there is not much students get for the amount of debt they end up with, I feel SO happy to have college in my rear-view, without any debt remaining! It seems like such a nightmare these days- especially given the current job market, which seems to be horrible in the forseeable future. Its bad enough for people who have been working a real job, for years, who get laid off! Thanks for yet another amazing entry- this is a great one. Pretty scary stuff!

    • Michael

      GG:

      Thank you for the compliment

      Michael

  • Golden Child

    What I think is terrible is that naive kids who know nothing about how the world works are being encouraged to go to college by their out-of-touch dinosaur parents who went to college during the “good ol’ days”. Even training for STEM fields is mostly not a good bet. All of the career geniuses on the internet telling kids to study engineering, math and science are idiots. Not everyone has the mental capacities and natural talents to perform these highly skilled jobs. It is ridiculous to expect foreign level math skills from empty headed products of the American education system. Also, any job that can get outsourced DOES get outsourced. Not to mention, recent college grads are no hot commodity to businesses being forced to tighten up. Older more experienced workers get the entry level jobs that once were taken by recent college grads. Also, getting a living wage job is much more about connections than education. I know recent college grads who majored in music who are working as engineers because they knew the right people to get them jobs. On the other hand, I know engineering grads who can’t find a job anywhere, not even McDonald’s.

  • steve

    Most of the degrees offered are of no use.

  • Gary2

    Tax the rich and make college affordable for all

  • JD

    Its almost sad to see these kids being told that college is the only way to get ahead in life. I myself went to a small technical college here in my hometown Helena Mt for one semester it cost me nearly 7,000 dollars for one semester!! I was studying small business management. Note: this was just before the gas prices went up and the Bear Stearns collapse. I knew that major events were going down and that my dream of owning a business was just that a dream and not a goal with a deadline like my former school likes to advertise everywhere. Student loans are a racket to saddle students with a lifetime of misery. I used to date a woman whose guidance councellor told her that she could get a job right out of college in get this Forensic Anthropolgy! Turns out after 4 yrs of debt and lies the few jobs in my state were long taken. Most of the other jobs require being a police officer first along with the degree. So basically she had to be a bartender who still dreams of being like Grissom in CSI. The reality is there is no gaurantee you will have the job despite what these college says. I had to become an independent contractor so in a way i became a business owner without college. As for paying to learn accounting and computers im sure i can pay a recent college grad who would gladly teach me so they can pay towards their own student loan nightmare. I also have friends that are getting into college debt for the money only. One actually wants the world to end so he dosent have to pay it back!! Is this really how bad its gotten?

  • Morgana

    Respectfully, I disagree with your assessment. Yes, there will always be cheaters and party animals. I’ve spoken with college students whose use of spoken grammar makes me wince- you would think that somewhere along the line they would have dropped “youse guys”. For the most part, though, I am impressed by students that I have met on a college campus. I’ve spoken with quite a few over the last four years as my family has explored college options for our own child.
    The real issue is that only 20% of high school graduates really belong in college. The other students don’t have the academic aptitude and are not well served by being on campus. They were pushed there by well-meaning guidance counselors and parents, or drifted there due to lack of better alternatives. This glut of students has made basic classes unavailable- hence the dearth of students graduating in four years- and has swelled the cost of attendance.
    A secondary issue is that young people are expected to train for a career when they are very young and haven’t had time to form an adult personality, let alone find their “passion”. They major in liberal arts or communications, perhaps business or marketing, because their single goal is to acquire a degree. Small wonder that they find it difficult to apply this degree in the adult world.

  • Patriot One

    The facts are that 64% of college students should be doing something else; a trade school or just going to work. The great myth today is that you must go to college.

    I’ve had MBA’s and PHD’s, CHFC’s, CFP’s and CPCU’s working for me that after 2 weeks still couldn’t find the bathroom. I will say they all had one thing in common. They could give great presentations on why they didn’t make the sale.

    I’ll take a smart person with a high school education every day over an MBA. Just give me someone who can do math, read, write and speak well. Talent isn’t a learned experience.

    54% of all jobs come from small business and most don’t require a degree.

    Check out the cost of a college education for the 50 years prior to student loans, you will be surprised. Student loans are just more government programs run amock.

  • Bobby Smith

    Music schools….what a joke. Thousands of grads. each year with no place to go. Now that public schools are cutting music it is getting even worse. Also, I am amazed at the ignorance of the grads. I have worked with while teaching or performing. Although we have a few music schools which are good…..most are harmful to the student’s future. If you want to have a good time and slide by…..plus get a piece of paper which means nothing to anyone…..music school is “cool.”

  • Stan Back

    The communist indoctrination and pinko commie rat professors would be enough to make me think twice and the politically correct bravo sierra.

  • freedom

    dear robert as an educator for many years i can tell you that none of my american students whould be able to qualify for a free education at a european school. they are much to busy druging,and ***********. and as for the rest of us, why are we still talking?

  • DownWithLibs

    Stepping off topic for a moment:

    The natural devastation in the mid-west in the last few days should help bring us down faster. Tragic deaths aside(and there are a lot), the cost to rebuild after all of the floods and tornados, they are talking about devastated crops – I guess a lot of loss there. This is not going to help our food supply this summer. The awfulness just seems to deepen.

  • a cruel accountant

    Where I live everyone is desperate for welders. College grads are a dime a dozen.

  • a cruel accountant

    Liberal Arts degree = $7.25/hour

  • David

    After graduating from high school I joined the Marine Corp and went to Naval electronics schools, all paid for by the military. Afterwards I worked on electronic/electrical systems on aircraft. Naval schools are some of the best in the world. Also the life skills are excellent. Since leaving the military in the 80’s I have never had any problems finding a technical position. I have a wonderfull job, am debt free and also able to purchase Gold and Silver bullion. I feel sorry for the younger generation, they will not survive!

  • El Pollo de Oro

    Back in the 1960s and 1970s, most Americans would have laughed their heads off if you told them they would live to see a time in which unemployed college graduates with masters degrees would be competing with unemployed construction workers for minimum-wage jobs. In those days, a college degree was the ticket to the good life for many white-collar Americans, and on the blue-collar side, there were many Americans who went to trade schools, joined unions and had high-paying jobs. Both the white-collar/college degree path and the blue-collar/trade school path could provide a living wage and support a family. But times have changed, and now, The Banana Republic of America (formerly the USA) is a Third World horror movie in which both white-collar and blue-collar workers are screwed. A minority of Americans will continue to do really well, but then, a minority of people in Mexico, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Colombia are extremely rich. There are businesspeople in Mexico City, Santo Domingo, Kingston and Bogota who make more money in a day than most of my neighbors here in Philadelphia will make in a year, but you can’t measure a country’s economic health by a small minority; you measure it by the size of the middle class, and the American middle class has been dying just as everyone from Ross Perot to Michael Moore warned it would.

    So, what’s the alternative to college or trade school? You can try starting your own business, but the BRA’s wretched health insurance system makes that cost-prohibitive for many Americans. Plus, the banksters that got bailed out by the taxpayers aren’t too generous when it comes to small business loans for the taxpayers who bailed their miserable asses out. Let’s be honest: the game is totally rigged in the BRA. This isn’t “capitalism” or “free enterprise”—this is neo-feudalism. This is fascism. This is an oligarchy, and going forward, life is going to be truly grim for the vast majority of Americans.

    Welcome to a Third World ponzi scheme that is headed for a total collapse. Welcome to The Banana Republic of America, basketcase of the Third World.

    We’re screwed.

  • jayohno

    Golden Child said it best, I agree 100%. I’m in college now, and I was told that I had to do a STEM field and I wanted too, but just couldnt. My math skills have been mediocre since middle school, poor teaching and lack of effort on my part to learn better are both to blame. however, I went to a top 20 high school and got “A’s” in EACH of my math courses. its a joke. you can get by with great grades and still not know anything, shouldnt even be possible.

    This country is well on its way to complete hell, and dumbing us down was part of it all along.

  • jayohno

    also, I agree with the idea that only a fraction of HS grads should go to college. There really is no point unless you can go for cheap or are studying STEM. I would have been much better off at a trade school, not that thats some golden ticket guarantee to a decent career anymore either.

  • Michael

    A college degree is a waste of time and money. Being saddled with a $50,000 debt isn’t too bad if you can get a job at 50K+ benefits. But opportunities for American grads are few. And the few opportunites require an additional 2-5 years experience.

    The National Science Foundation tracks the # of graduates for most professions. Sadly, the data only goes to ’06. I took the avg. of ’01 – ’06 and added it to the last 4 years to get a reasonable estimate. In the last decade, about a million people got Computer science degrees (BA, MA, PhD). Also, about 850,000 got Engineering degrees (BA, MA, PhD). Here is the link. Consult tables 5, 12, and 19.

    http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/nsf08321/pdf/nsf08321.pdf

    So how many new jobs were there in the last decade? BLS non farm payroll data gives us the answer. Go to the BLS.Gov website and type “b-1″ in the search field, and select the 3rd option. You can then do a yearly search. Read it and weep.

    In the last decade, “Computer systems design and related services” added 154,000 jobs. More than 6 times that number earned CS degrees!

    In the last decade, “Architecture and Engineering” added a pathetic 17,000 jobs. More than 50 times that number earned Engineering degrees!

    Other professions like Acconting and Finance also showed very poor job growth.

    This data proves beyond any doubt that all the CEOs who say they cannot find any Ameican engineers are liars. All they want is cheap, indentured labor in the form of H1-B and L1 guest workers.

    The truth is that America is bursting at the seams with unemployed college graduates. Do not get a CS, Engineering, or any other degree unless you know someone who can guarantee you a job, or you plan to move to India.

  • Stinky Pete

    I keep waiting for someone to post a comment such as “well, colllege is great if you major in something useful like engineering or science.” Well being in the environmental/cleantech sector and having colleagues with those degrees, I can affirm that there are many, many such people with these degrees (and experience) desperate for work. I posted a job on Craigslist once for my solar company and applicants were begging me for the job, often willing to work for $15 or less, with engineering degrees!

  • Piglet

    I went to college 30 years ago and most of my dorm roommates partied, got stoned, got laid, slept late instead of going to class, etc. Their moms and dads were footing the bill. I was paying my own way and when I wasn’t in class, I was doing homework until the library building closed at 11 p.m., and then I’d probably do more back in my dorm room. I didn’t graduate with debt but I was broke when it was all over. Even before graduation, I knew most of what I had studied would be of no use in life. I had an excellent history professor who said that studies showed a student doesn’t remember more than 10% of what he learned a year earlier. Why should today’s students incur massive debts when they won’t even remember the (useless) information they learned in class. A decade later I got an MBA, which has been totally useless and didn’t really teach me anything I hadn’t already has in undergrad business classes. The most useful classes I’ve taken were some computer classes at local community colleges and evening adult education centers. Those were what got me started on a career, not the four-year sheepskin.

  • comnenus

    If you go to STEM courses you will mostly find not-english-speaking Chinese and Indians.

    I have been to such courses where the prof and the students were both mostly Chinese, and conducted a major portion of lecture with Chinese or chinese-accented English incomprehensible to non-Chinese speakers.

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/student-loan-debt-hell-21-statistics-that-will-make-you-think-twice-about-going-to-college Terrance

    Forwarding this article to you is not intended to be a discouragement for you getting a college degree; however, it is a strong encouragement for you to STAY OUT OF DEBT ! ! ! The degree is mostly just a “sheep skin” to get some doors or windows to open for you in the real world. The real degree substance will be found in fields such as business, finance and accounting, statistical modeling, applied math, pharmacy and some medical degrees along with animal science and vetnary medicine and other similar degrees. . . . Many certification programs will not admit you unless you have a “sheep skin” but really all that you need to earn a good deal of money is the certificate or license i.e. a brokers license, teaching certificate, engineering license etc. but the anti-God world system has developed to the extent that it is now all-controlling demanding degrees for mundane jobs while loading down the unsuspecting people with insufferable debt that will take many years to repay while greatly deminishing the quality of their lives.

  • mondobeyondo

    A couple years ago, back when I was still a rat in the rat race, my employer specifically stated that they would never hire anyone from a specific art/graphic design college here in Phoenix, Arizona.

    Why? Their graduates didn’t receive enough training to qualify for our company’s needs. This school’s curriculum was inadequate. Sub-par emphasis on computer graphics skills. If an applicant listed this particular school on his/her resume, it was immediately thrown in the circular file (i.e. the trash can).

    True story: One applicant from this college actually got an interview. He was given a typing test to check his proficiency on a keyboard. He sat there for a full 10 minutes just staring at the monitor. Never typed a single thing in all that time. You’d have gotten a better response by showing him pictures of Lady Gaga in her meat dress.

    Yep – we got a winner here!!

  • Bec

    I spent $50,000 for a degree in psychology (graduated in 4 years). I work for a non-profit (love what I do) that REQUIRES a degree. Let me assure you my degree is not necessary. Then they pay 27,000/yr. ouch. The problem I see, at least where I live, is if you want a job with basic hours, which is a MAJOR plus if you have a family, you have to have a degree. I didn’t see a way around it. Not all of these jobs truly need a degreed person. The way I see it trending is that without a Masters my 3 year old won’t be able to get a “traditional” job in the future. I don’t like it, but that’s what I see happening here.

  • Jim R

    ” I have sent out over the past year — it amounts to several hundred”

    With all due empathy, is that ALL!!??? I recall being his age and sending out about 4 or 5 THOUSAND in just over a year, all done on a manual typewriter.

    He also ought to get out the People’s Socialist Hell of Kalifornia.

    Otherwise, good luck to you!!

  • liberranter

    The only useful purpose that the average piece of overvalued parchment called a “college diploma” serves today is to get one a “job” with an established (usually government-connected or subsidized) business that values appearance and “prestige” more than substance. I can say without reservation that almost NOTHING that I “learned” in college has had any practical application to what I do in the workplace on a daily basis (and my career is directly related to my major). What few things I did learn in college that are relevant to the workplace are things I could easily have learned on my own without wasting thousands of dollars and hundreds of life-hours in a state indoctrinarium. The skills that I employ on a daily basis, whether as an information systems engineer or as a manager, are skills that I learned through practical experience, NOT in a college classroom.

    To both high school students considering a college education and to adults who seek a career change, I say DO NOT WASTE TIME AND MONEY GOING TO COLLEGE. There are thousands of low-cost or free resources, particularly on the Web, that you can use to teach yourself any skill(s) you want to learn, and plenty of alternative ways through which to apply those skills. I would also echo the sentiments of several other posters here that apprenticeships, practica, or work-study arrangements are infinitely more useful and valuable to building skills than sitting in a classroom listening to reality-insulated, tenured, clueless drones spew forth PC nonsense.

    As an employer, I would do away with the traditional job interview, which rarely provides any useful insight whatsoever into the applicant’s real skills and abilities. This would be replaced with a workplace simulation exercise (or series of them) that would give me some real measure of the applicant’s actual worth. Given the abominable quality of the public “educations” most of them have received to date, I have a feeling that very few applicants in general, and almost none of today’s recent “college graduates” in particular, would stand a chance of getting hired.

  • http://TheEconomicCollapse Dave

    Please tell me why has collegiate education gone so high, so fast? Since 1978 it has gone up 800 times the rate of inflation. There must be a reason. All you need is four walls and some desks and a few professors and one janitor and one administrator and his or secretary. How can things cost so much?

  • Tatiana Covington

    I finally got fed up and just quit. It wasn’t getting anywhere, and certain personal factors make job and career impossible. Further, I have clearly noticed how watered down it has become over the years, and in my case, decades.

    So I quit. I’m comfortable with the decision.

    Besides, since thinking caps and noninvasive brain-machine interfaces are already experimental realities, I expect that by 2060, education as we have known it since Plato will be obsolete.

  • James

    I always discourage people from going to a university. Rather, I encourage them to go to a community college and take courses that will actually get them a job. I also mention apprenticeships where your education is paid for by the employers, and you actually know how to do something that pays well. My take on universities is that it is a place where they tell you to read a book and them come back to take a test, afterwards they give you a grade that is supposed to tell employers you know the material. Basically, it is institution where they certify that you might know how to do a specific job. Most employers won’t hire college graduates without some kind of experience, and most universities lack that type of experience, whereas you get experience from hands on experience from a community college or apprenticeship.

  • The Beast

    Even what was once a path to enlightenment i.e education , has now turned into a giant scam that cost the economy couple of billions Dollars per annum. Education and higher learning once was a way in which Renaissance become a historical fact. Now the very tools that spread wisdom has changed and bring back society and civilization into slavery of the mass through the “student loan”. I imagine one thousand years from now, a historian will look at our history and put this comment: “the 20th and 21st century is when the age of renaissance was reversed into another feudalism.”
    How I yearn for a true enlightenment.

  • John

    Its pretty Simple,just gogle/yahoo: Layoffs 2011

    Thats will make u second think college

  • emma

    yup I didnt go to college for that reason. I am a stay at home mom and investor.

    Alot of people think we are doomed, but there are still great ways to make money. Even while the economy is collapsing around us.

    I subscribe to the guy from australia and his FFT economic newsletter at http://www.forecastfortomorrow.com that guy has called many big events before they have happend, including the stock market crash in 2008 and the current financial collapse of the US. (currently happening) I found him from a friend last year, and he has some important work.

    His oil calls are insane, and I have been making good money with them. He is well worth a look, if you want to keep two steps ahead of the sheeple out there.

    I am worried about my financial future. Is anyone else nervous out there?

  • astone30

    I’d like to comment on only one thing, your inclusion of the old Harvard entrance exam.

    I think it’s irrelevant and detrimental to your argument for a few reasons. First of all, in actuality the test is not overly exceptionally difficult except that it requires knowledge of several subjects which are just not taught in schools anymore: mainly the classics and classical languages. I can tell you as someone who studies Classics that the questions really aren’t very difficult if you have a basic knowledge in the field. These are just subjects which the American education system doesn’t emphasize anymore, opting instead to emphasize modern history and modern languages.

    Not to defend the education system, since I’m currently embroiled in it and know how flawed and infantilized it has become, but in this case, your saying the old Harvard exam is so much harder than modern exams is a lot like when elderly people talk about how much cheaper everything used to be and “only paying a nickel to go to the movies” 50 years ago. Technically speaking that’s true, but it’s all very relative and actually divulges little truth about modern society.

  • Divinatio

    Sounds like the Ph.D. cab drivers from Russia. We are well on our way to becoming the socialist republic of USA. At least the Russians paid for their people’s educations.

  • http://911essentials.com Fanny Forbes Franklen

    College is a scam. The bloated tuition shows that the market is way oversold and about to burst. Buy gold for your children and look for alternative education.

    —– http://911essentials.com

  • Maria

    Talk about a hot button issue! Finally, somebody who agrees with us. Thank you, Michael. You can bet I am looking forward to NIA’s newest video release as well.

    My husband and I have four kids. All of them are home schooled and doing well. The oldest just turned 17. She completed school this year at 16 and scored well on the CAT and SAT. After months of deliberating, she decided to go to work instead of college for now. We supported her decision. We would have either way.

    You would think we committed a crime.

    Some of our family and friends can’t believe we aren’t pushing her in the other direction. It was the same negative attitude when we decided to home school…only this is ten times worse. People at work question our daughter about why she isn’t in college. We hear comments like “throwing away the future” and “get a degree to fall back on…just in case.” My favorite is, “She’ll never get a good paying job.” Give me a break! People are so conditioned to think that a sheep skin is the only ticket to success in this world.

    How many young couples are starting off their lives together with tens of thousands in college debt? In this economic environment, that is downright SCARY!

    My daughter was fortunate enough to get a good position in an established company that has good prospects for the future. She is getting great work experience and has become a reliable backup for positions in five different departments. In six months she has saved enough to pay for an associate degree. She also bought her first car last week. The guy at the dealership couldn’t believe this “kid” walked in with hard earned cash and paid for her own car. He told us his teenage son wouldn’t look for a job if he paid him to.

    Am I proud of my daughter? Darn right I am! And I don’t apologize for supporting her decision to work instead of going deep in debt to attend college.

    • Michael

      Very good comment Maria

  • Paul

    Do you have vocational training in the US, like apprenticeships for mechanics and electricians and hairdressers, etc. that gives you a certificate after two years school and practice?

    Those guys wouldn’t need to go to university.

  • Paul

    Check out the wikipedia article about debt bondage – it is supposed to be illegal. ROTFLMAO

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debt_bondage

  • Josh

    BUT, think about how many students are in those statistics because they went school not knowing what they wanted to do. Then end up not graduating and having so much debt. AT LEAST its better to have debt and have a degree in something you want to do. The only “socially acceptable” thing to do is to go to school. So so many people go for the wrong reasons, racking up so much debt. Yes, many things are wrong with the price of school, but I believe higher education will get you a better job then someone without it. Mc Donald’s will rather higher a person with a degree then one without a degree. If you plan school right and not for stupid reasons, College can be a very good thing.

  • Corbett

    What can you expect from people with Liberal Arts degrees? Sociology — really. A made up degree for the mentally lazy. Or Political Science. Give me a break!

    You want a degree that is worth something? Then get a degree in one of the hard sciences or engineering. Otherwise, don’t complain that you work behind the counter at a fast food place.

    • Travis

      You do realize that both majors you stated aren’t liberal arts degrees, right? lol you must be mentally handicapped or something.

  • Anonymous

    I could have done pretty well on the math part of that exam, the arithmetic, algebra, trig, geom, etc.

    I would have gotten around 0 on the rest of it.

  • http://moneycrisisgameplan.com David

    Those numbers are staggering! Inflation.US is coming out with a hour long documentary called ‘College Conspiracy’, so look for that to be released in the next month to help inform others.

    David
    The Elevation Group

  • http://freefood2gocoop.com Free Food 2 Go

    The system is designed to make you an employee/slave for life.

    It’s purposely setup to not give you a proper financial education or empower you to become an entrepreneur.

    David
    Free Food 2 Go

  • http://www.studentloanresistanceofamerica.com FrankyFreelance

    Good article here :

    http://www.senseoncents.com/2011/04/are-student-loans-an-impending-bubble-is-higher-education-a-scam/

    with good book recommendation

    How the University Works: Higher Education and the Low-Wage Nation :

    (more info on the book here) :

    http://www.archivetr.net/ebooks/383022-how-the-university-works-higher-education-and-the-low-wage-nation.html

    JOIN THE RESISTANCE!
    http://www.studentloanresistanceofamerica.com

  • DownWithLibs

    @ a cruel accountant:

    I have heard about the lack of welders too. They offer a short course in welding at a community school where I live. I will probably look into joining next year.

    @ Silver dollar value:

    I think you are on to something! ;-)

  • Carol

    Gee, wouldn’t this all be much easier if employers could just give applicants an IQ or general aptitude test? Then the ones hired could be trained on the job.

  • Gus

    Corbett has one of the few intelligent responses.

    Get a degree in engineering. Why didn’t all those marketing/business majors get a degree in engineering? IT’S ******* HARD. So it’s hard to feel bad when marketing majors can’t find jobs.

    They expect to just coast through college and then get a badass job for the rest of their lives. Sorry kiddies, you need to actually apply yourselves.

  • No

    This is ridiculous. College is what you make of it. I am the first in my family to go to college. I, and my family, paid a lot of money so I could go to a top LAC to get a good education. I worked hard and now have a full ride at the best medical school in the country through the NIH’s MSTP program. I’m not any smarter than my friends who partied too much and are unemployed. You either had bad luck or screwed up, and you’re bitter about it.

    • sad

      Actually, the article applies to the majority of students, the typical student. Obviously, the STEM fields are critical for those in medicine and engineering. However, you “paid a lot of money” that you should not have paid. Federally backed guaranteed loans have created a financial bubble similar to the housing bubble, since colleges have an incentive to keep raising costs to whatever the market will bear (econ 101). Therefore, the scam that this article exposes DID impact you and caused you to pay more than your education was worth. Good luck with med school, I am an MD and I did not pay off my debt until I was 40.

  • mondobeyondo

    First job: Burger King
    Next job: Burger King

    Progress?? Ummm….. yeah.

  • http://www.pathtoasia.com rhea

    If tuition and spending increases at the same rate or higher than the aid, the only “dramatic increase in educational opportunities” is the increase in the rents extracted by the educational industry.
    If the college educations don’t really add that much human capital, then encouraging everyone to go to college (and legally forbidding employers from using other methods of testing people’s aptitude) only locks people out of jobs if they don’t have the proper credential.

    We help Americans find jobs and prosperity in Asia. Visit http://www.pathtoasia.com/jobs1/ for details.

  • Craigie

    The default rates include drop outs — which is about 50 percent of the mix. The default rates for those who receive certificates, associates, bachelors and graduate/professional degrees is much less than those who drop out during the first year of school.

    Instead of bickering, people should work together. Art majors from a first tier school have much better employment prospects than engineering and business majors from a second tier school. What you study is not important unless you are enrolling in the type of vocation program whose only selling point is a job and a salary. Do your homework.

  • david

    I think it’s important to take a look at the philosophical roots of the current crisis, not just in higher education but at the lower levels as well. John Dewey thought that the kind of education that would enable one to pass the 19th-century Harvard entrance exam was not only unnecessary, but counterproductive. He thought that young people needed, not education, but socialization. His writings were extremely influential on the educational establishment in the US, the result being what we have today.

  • Entertainme

    Colleges, mostly Universities, have a monopoly which allows them to charge whatever they can reasonably (or unreasonably) charge. They can then over pay their so called professors, administrators, management people, etc. They can also continue to build brick and mortar. Students will pay anything, parents will pay anything, relatives will help pay anything, just to help the “kid” get that magic hyped degree. I always advise high school students, who are open to suggestion, that IF they go to college, major in science, physics, or preferably engineering. Those are the only disciplines which will advance our society. For example, Attorneys only “take” from society. Doctors are primarily maintenance people. (They didn’t make the pacemaker, an engineer did.) Accountants count and calculate. Well, you get the picture!

  • liberranter

    Maria, you and your husband should be proud of yourselves and your daughter. She absolutely made the right choice to get a job and defer going to college. I think many of us will attest to the fact that going to college right out of high school is generally NOT a wise idea, as most young people have no real idea of what they actually want to do with their lives. You said that your daughter saved enough money in six months for an associates degree. I hope that she’s still working and is going to school (or went to school) part-time. Yes, it takes extra effort and dedication to earn a degree while working, but it’s well worth it just to keep one foot in the working world as you continue your education. This should be the model for ALL young people today to follow.

    I’m also glad to hear that you let the naysayers’ idiocy go in one ear and out the other. It is truly amazing, as you mentioned, just how brainwashed people are when it comes to the conventional “wisdom” of getting a college degree right out of high school. It just goes to show you that most people are absolutely incapable of critical thinking and that our society consists of a dumbed-down herd.

    Anyway, congratulations on your success as a parent. You’re an inspiration to all of us!

  • Mike Hgl

    The middle class was priced out of a college education long ago, unless you submit to student loan bondage. Myself, I got sick of wasting my time in college and spending all my hard earned money on a supposed “edukason”. I quit, saved the money I had spent on tuition for the year, and bought two rental investments on land contract. Based on the lesssons I learened in real life ( being a small businessman,a landlord and a carpenter) have given me all the tools I need in life to move forward. My advice to those thinking about wasting their money for higher education: Keep it (or don’t borrow it) Apprenticeship and on-the-job training makes more sense by far. Use your own skills to advance yourself. Avoid debt.

  • joe

    I go to college right now. Only reason I went was free tuition. I would never have paid these people to waste my time. Not even worth the time spent doing it.

  • http://survivalpreppersblog.com Lynette

    Hi Michael, I linked your article to my blog today because as a “prepper” your information is invaluable.

    I hope linking is ok…. perhaps I should have emailed first? I don’t know. I just wanted to get your information in front of my readers asap!Full credit was given.

    I love your blog! Thank you for the time and effort you put into the articles!

    Lynette

    • Michael

      Lynette:

      Please feel free to link to these articles any time. In fact, I encourage people to use these articles on their own sites and to share them with their family and friends. The more people that see these articles the more of an impact they will have.

      So yes, linking is very much okay. I am honored that you stop by the site and I hope that you will continue to make use of the articles.

      Michael

  • mickeythepirate

    Guess what..this is a reality check. The Government and banks were happy to lend (enslave) as many people as possible and to lend them all the money they wanted..for ANYTHING.. So you provided more money supply to the Universities..They in turn DEMANDED more money..I guess nobody in government ever studied basic economics…ohh nevermind..anybody can see that for themselves.
    As for going to collage and getting somewhere, If you go to collage and take a bunch of chickens*%t classes, thats what you get..a bunch of chicken pellets to show for it. I put myself through collage..I knew every semester when I signed the loan papers that it was my backside I was inviting them to chew on..that is why I took 18 to 22 semester hours of classes every semester. (and no, I had no time to party, since I double majored in Physics and Earth Sciences). I had say 20 hours a week in class, another 40 studying and then another 15 in labs. Then worked part time for the University. I took out the trash for the rich kids, or cleaned up the campus or drove a bus..whatever.. to have enough money to eat.
    Guess what? I was hired by phone a week after graduation..I have been hired several times since, but have never been unemployed..I got a degree that somebody needed..Sure it was not easy…the best things in life are not free or easy..that is what the youth of this nation have forgotten. Now its judgement day…You will work for bread, and live in poverty for your lack of effort. Your children will cry out in agony and curse you as they starve because you always thought you would be given money and the wealth of the workers while you sat on your lazy bass and did nothing…The culture that honored and worshipped stupidity and vulgarity will be rewarded with a generation of ill mannered morons to try to run things…God help this nation,you who can abandon ship, jump now, because metaphoriclly, we are headed towards Niagra Falls aboard the SS Minow…with Gilligan in command…Just give it up…we are so screwed it is not worth any further effort…drinking yourself into a blind stupor is at least an alternative plan…it would numb the pain we are witnessing…

  • Marie

    I work for a major medical device company that was purchased by a big pharma corporation a few years back. Since the time of that purchase, there have been at least 5 substantial layoffs and rumor has it there will be another one early this summer. See, they believe in off-shoring the work. So the company that we once were – the largest employer in our county and heavy investors in R&D – has been reduced to bare bones with more ‘headcount adjustments’ coming. It is more important for the CEO to be on the top paid list of CEOs. The only method they use to keep the manufacturing costs down is to off-shore the manufacturing. (They claim otherwise, but it’s just political mumbo-jumbo.) So go ahead and climb into student loan hell. All that will be waiting for you is a job flipping hamburgers.

  • Matthew

    Several points. One of the reasons college became so expensive is when Sallie Mae took over college loans they could give higher loans to meet rising prices. when this happen college tuition double in four years. But oddly teachers largely became underpaid adjunct WTF wear is all the money going in the education system? Two college standards have decreased to admit more students. I am a big believer that college is not primarily about “getting a job” but at these prices it may be best to avoid universities and colleges become self educated, go to junior colleges, find cheaper schools, or go to Europe for a degree. Believe me the overpriced tuition is not worth it. Set your own eduction goals and find cheaper ways of attaining them. I went to school mostly on Scholarship and grad school was almost free. But even with scholarships in undergrad I still left with substantial debt and I am now a low paid care worker.

  • http://www.catholicthinker.net/ PaulF

    Dave – the ridiculous cost of college education can be explained by the influx of free money – government-sponsored student loans.

    This is the type of thing that happens when the govt intervenes in the free market by setting ridiculously low interest rates for college loans (and giving literally free money!).

    Google “Mish college loans”.

  • http://www.catholicthinker.net/ PaulF

    I attended the University of Wisconsin system from 1988-1993. I graduated with a BS in Computer Science. A few observations about my experience the article (which is excellent and entirely correct):

    – I took at least 12 credits a semester, sometimes as many as 17 or 18, but did not graduate in four years – that was nearly impossible. But so what.

    – I rarely wrote 40 or even 20 pages for a class but for some I wrote thousands of lines of code and for others I did many advanced math problems – the CS program at UWM included/includes about 20 credits of calculus and post-calculus.

    – Tuition was something like $1200/semester. I lived at home, worked part-time at a grocery store, and paid my way with a little help from my parents. NO student loans.

    – I never got laid. But that’s Ok; I was a budding Christian AND a nerd.

    I’m lucky I was born when I was – it now costs more than 4x what I paid to go to UWM!

    Actually, I’d have been better off if I’d been born 30 years earlier, as then I’d be pretty close to dying and not about to live through the real Great Depression.

  • Nick

    US higher education is a mega-disaster for students. If they haven’t already learnt a financial lesson from the housing disaster, then God help them!
    Unfortunately for many American students it’s too late and slavery will be their future for the rest of their lives.
    Alas, this is what beer, partying and young toxic American women can do to a healthy American. The future is nothing but slavery, slavery and more slavery for the poor students!
    Party is over…here comes the whip!

  • Dev Horn

    If you have gone to college for 2 years and have learned absolutely zero – that’s your fault. I got a good college education which, 30 years later, continues to benefit me. I did it with zero student loans – my parents paid tuition and books and I worked 30 hours per week to pay all my living expenses (including a car). I agree that you don’t need to go to an Ivy League college – just a decent 4-yr university with a sound reputation. I will do whatever it takes to send my kids to college, and I have no doubt that they will learn a lot and get a better job as a result. My 2 cents. Thanks!

  • JD

    Hey Josh if u havent noticed McDonalds doesnt hire hardly anyone anymore. Read Micheals article about Losing Faith 62000 out of a million. I actually tried to work there in 2009 when i was first laid off with prior college and job experience. The fact is they dont want to take a chance on someone who has a college degree because they assume they will quit as soon as some thing better comes along. But the truth is that most of the jobs that require a college degree are already taken and the people that work at them are too scared or cant quit those jobs so Mickey Ds is the only game in town for alot of folks. This weeks job death match Roofer vs. anthropologist! You know what Dave Ramsey says it best that the most effective way to find a job is to know someone who works there already. ive found sometimes its the only way.

  • piprod01

    There’s something in this article that I find way off; that Universities are providing poorer education now than they did in the past. I reckon they probably provide a better education because it’s far easier to give students information. The problem is, almost certainly, entirely with the students.

    “Meanwhile, as you will see from the statistics posted below, the quality of education at our colleges and universities has deteriorated badly.”
    Well you never did; all the statistics showed that many students are lazy.

  • Maria

    liberranter,

    Thank you. Although, I have to say we only provide the environment for our kids to succeed. They are the ones who have to do the work to earn their own success. You can lead a horse to water, but can’t make him drink so to speak.

    Yes, my daughter is still working full time and saving for college. And yes, she plans to work part time while attending college…if that is the avenue she pursues.

    New opportunities and options are coming available that she didn’t know about or consider before now. She has a lot to think about.

    You are right about most young people not being sure what to do with their futures. How can they be expected to know at 18 or in my daughter’s case, 16? Especially in this economic environment.

    Thank you for the encouragement.

  • spydo

    I left college in 1981 with a mountain of debt, even though I was a Vietnam Era vet on the GI Bill.

    Back then you might as well have told the financial aid officer that you served with Charles Manson. I basically got $0 from SU.

    In NYS they had the TAP or Tuition Assistance Program. I was 23, had a 1 year old son and a wife, and hadn’t lived with parents for almost 4 years. Yet the SU advisor told me I was not eligible for TAP because my parents would not release their finances. I was like “what do MY PARENTS have to do with it?”. I got a blank stare and no help.

    Other students were getting so much aid they were buying vehicles- we had no aid, and were trying to figure out how to feed 3 of us – sometimes on $5 for 5 days! I worked 20 hours a week and the wife babysat but even with that we were broke after paying rent and vehicles. The whole 4 years’ tuition were pretty much on credit.

    It *sweetened the deal* a bit, years later, when I was solicited by SU to DONATE. I told the person I’d love to- I’ll help you AS MUCH AS Syracuse helped me! They were like GREAT! Until they heard the story.

    At least vets today are treated with respect and I think universities might even try to give them EXTRA assistance. Back then it was like we were criminals for serving our nation.

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/student-loan-debt-hell-21-statistics-that-will-make-you-think-twice-about-going-to-college jackson

    daughter unemployed, living on foodstamps, 4 year degree, owes $82,000, on top of a 4yr “full boat” scholarship.

    1st son, “Dad, college sucks, can i come and live with you until i get my Journeyman’s card?
    (did, earned UNION card and took apprenticeship classes and schooling, passed), now has own place AND makes 120,000 a year.

    2nd son, 4years @ u of AZ, $65,000 in college loans, earned degree in psychology. Now drives a taxi.

    JOIN a UNION and live well.
    Some one has to take over the REAL jobs, and the Unions.
    NOTE: there is a labor shortage everywhere, even in the UNIONS.

    Proud retired UNION plumber/fitter

  • BMOC

    $120K/yr for fitting pipes together? Hey, pretty soon y’all will be able to participate in Obama’s “Share the Wealth” program.

    A Psychology degree and Taxi Driver sounds good. At least he can make tips. I knew a guy with a psychology degree who 10 years after graduation was still a sales clerk at Target.

  • King of the Zombees

    University presidents, board of directors, and all high profile positions, are earning filthy salaries in millions of dollars by increasing tution fees of the American students. This is just great!
    I’m waiting for the day when students en-mass boycott the universities….and then lets see how they pay for their big fat cat salaries and pension and other benefits!
    My goal is to strip these guys in white shirts and black ties off their cushy positions, make them homeless and bring them onto the streets where they actually belong.

  • Stephen Byerly

    I’m a 22-year-old with a similar start to many of your stories. I was 17 when I graduated high school and got accepted in to a LAC. Couldn’t pay for it as my parents combined only made about 40000 a year and had to drive 30 miles one way to go to work. I joined the Army Reserves, went to basic and my job training, and came back to go to college… which I promptly drank my way out of in about 6 weeks. I came active duty, paid off my student loans in about 3 years, and now a year after that I make about 50 grand a year, live in a nice part of town where I’m stationed, have a brand new car and an older jeep that somehow I can afford to put gas into, a brand new washer and dryer, two cats, brand new furniture, my wife doesn’t have to work, I have no credit cards, and on top of that I’m working on college courses for pre-pharmacy (which I don’t have to pay a dime for as long as I’m on active duty thanks to free tuition). If I get out, I can go to pharmacy school on the government’s dime because of the revamped GI Bill while working as a pharmacy tech (which the Army will pay for the certification should I not be able to teach myself the test material out of the book), my wife will be working as a pharmacy tech (she already has the certification), and when I earn my PharmD degree either I can work in a hospital or local pharmacy (which jobs reports say is the #2 fastest growing job in Indiana and starts at 97000 a year) or I can go back in the Army as a Captain with 8 years in for pay and work for 96000 a year (they need pharmacists) and that number will only go up. They don’t need pharmacists? No problem, they still need officers, and starting pay for a “butter bar” with 8 years enlisted experience is 72000.

    If you pick the right field, are willing to work hard to pay for it, are willing to work hard while you’re in school, and stay focused, I feel education can be very valuable. If you don’t pick a field that is in demand, aren’t willing to work hard for school or while you’re in school, or focus more on beer and women than your studies, then you’re in for a lifetime of disappointment. Agree or disagree?

  • sleep

    you say 24% of time is spent sleeping, you do realize most people sleep 33% of their lives… therefore the students should be sleeping more than they are…

  • jojo

    Federal direct student loans are a Bank/Fed/State bailout scheme, see at bottom for documented example how healthcare and medicaid gets bailout too directly from education bonds, tuition/fees, and state aid as collateral

    As well as strategy with IRB to make extra 15% off future workers for 25 years

    fed does it and they cant lose, they are bailing out banks since laws prohibit their past home lending practices! sorry will give you theirs and their kids money though!

    With IRB, income based repayment, only federal loans can be used, its basically a 15% tax on income for 25 years, only doesnt work fiscally unless you are making 200k-250k a year. For most it will make sense

    the fed now gives student loans and keeps the variable low, lowest ever and hasnt changed since 2008, to make profit difference between rates/fees for themselves and banks. Banks dont have to compete for student money, even though credits tight, and in the future Federal loans can only be consolidated by the fed so no bank competition when students do make money. See how low a rate private loans are, and these give banks a federal insurance, even though student loans are the hardest to escape

    The variable has been its lowest ever and not moved since 2008. You think theyd let these fixed loans ever get higher when they set the variable and it would cripple them and banks? These loans are federally backed yet still get rates of 6.8,7.9. A lone citizen with cosignor with moderate income and decent credit can do way better, plus no consolidation limits

    Its a way the fed government, and state/city/university, can tax students/fill their deficits/take a piece of students tuition while they only worry about inflation and variable. how much money is that? you can not go into bankruptcy for student loans which forgives debt on credit report after 10 years, only way to escape is die, do a government repayment, or IRB which is still like a tax of 15% of income for 25 years if you dont make 6 figures this is the route most people will be going, so the government gets a 15% tax plus your regular income tax. This income based repayment plan is getting alot of fed attention

    they wont lose on deal, not a coincidence that fed does this at same time variable lowest ever and set by them since 2008 this low.

    Also its a way for state/city/healthcare bailouts and corporate profit, why your tuition rate really goes up at public schools all about buying each others bonds:

    public colleges/universities in states use education building bonds (selling a bond is basically getting a loan from buyer), see NJEFA site example, to collect money and at the same time they buy state/city government bonds, a way to kickback money to them from tuition I bet, and corporate, banks that buy their own school bonds.

    Bonds with a fixed rate, as only public school converted their variable too on njefa, have a predicable payout of interest and return for ones bought so when they give annual report the bottom line ends evenish. they choose the amount, term, and then its rated by wall street based on that and who they are. its crazy bailing out states and hospitals with student money from loans they pay the federal government interest on,

    much higher than the variable and all state/university/city/corporate bonds return, so they end up making money. the one umdnj is only one higher than 6.8 but still higher than plus loans, either way the fed is safe because the variable has been stuck at .25 or whatever since 2008, which they set. The exact same time njefa shows public school abandoning their variable rate bond

    see how a school like umdnj uses to bailout medicaid debt and healthcare costs:

    this situation meets fraud definition:

    The law has a specific definition what constitutes actionable legal fraud. “Although the word ‘fraud’ maybe used in common parlance to connote any practice involving shady or underhanded dealing, in law it is a term of art with a precise definition.” Banco Popular N. Am. v. Gandi, 184 N.J. 161, 175 (2005). In order to assert a legal fraud claim the moving party must establish the following five elements by clear and convincing evidence: “(1) [a] material misrepresentation of a presently existing or past fact; (2) knowledge or belief by defendant of its falsity; (3) an intention that the other person rely on it; (4) reasonable reliance thereon by the other person; and (5) resulting harm.” Jewish Ctr. of Sussex Cty v. Whale, 86 N.J. 619, 624-625 (1991); see also Simpson v. Widger, 311 N.J. Super. 379, 392 (App. Div. 1998) (holding that “fraud must be proven by clear and convincing evidence”).

    education building only bond used to pay medicaid debt, fraud charge by medicaid and other UH non educational debt, as well as tuition/fees revenue to pay interest rate of 7.47% and state education funds as locked up collateral in a bank and I doubt interest paid on it

    http://www.umdnj.edu…_09_BOT_res.pdf

    see above link

    essentially University hospital is broke and always in debt to state and others so they use a bond/loan thats for educational buildings only from NJEFA, to wipe non education debt. the state also gets money they are owed.

    school says its budget cuts reason for 18% tuition hike last year and all others, no mention of this. State gave same budget next year but we will still get a hike, always do

    The state forgives half their medicaid debt, $46 mill, $9 of which is a charge for fraud. UMDNJ pays the rest from 2013-2028. They get some debt service fund.

    And the to pay the woping 7.47% on the $260 million dollar bond, for non-educational use, as well as other bonds with they use any revenue, inlcuding tuition/fees, and use our state tution aid at least as collateral and some bank holds all this maybe without paying federally required interest on it. Thats like $12.7 mill a year in interest for just that one bond

    The lien on the state money is kept in an actual lockbox in a bank, 70% of umdnj bond portfolio have this crazy lien, and state money thats restricted like charity care is held as well till bond interest is paid.

    This is the only reason that 2009 was first year UH didnt lose 20-30 million that year in at least a decade, I bet the CEO makes their bonus. Same Year they sold bonds, 3 months before annual report, see board meeting 4/28/10 online 2 days beforebonds sold with great news of fiscal turnaround

    its not the students job to bailout UH and the state through tuition/fees/state subsidy

    There was an 18% hike in tuition last year, another this year despite no state budget difference, they make $100 mill from tuition alone then fees, $170 mill from state for education, grants, contracts, housing fees, and $30 billion a year of state money goes to UMDNJ as a whole

    They also buy state/ city government/corporate, the banks that buy their bonds I assume, bonds that return a much worse interest than 7.47%. This allows their consolidated report to yield predictable even bottom lines as well as a public disclosure. With only fixed interest rates being used, they choose the bond amount and period, they never have surprises that would raise an eyebrow about their “investments”

    Part of this $260 million paid old education bonds, 1999 and 1995, and I bet my eye the rate was better than 7.47%. Further increasing burden to students.

    They can take another $215 mill per the attached. I have other resources if any gaps missing, see 4/28/10 umdnj board meeting for report of miraculous turn of fiscal events by CEO, bonds went on sale 2 days later. She gets millions for such a fiscal turn around that is just a new loan that students foot the bill for

    why else they so scared of losing RWJ and school of public health?

    sources
    http://www.njefa.com…ty/recent/2009/

    http://www.bondsonli…A=view&RID=2977

    http://www.theuniver…tes_4_28_10.pdf

    http://keepcaliforni…/comment-page-1
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  • Mallory

    This is a major, major issue in our country today that is not receiving attention from congress for very tactical reasons. They don’t want people to stop borrowing, to stop enslaving themselves. If people knew the truth, change would start to happen.

    I have nearly 40,000 dollars from student loan debt upon graduation of a five year program – and it’s a field with unstable and scant employment prospects – and the clincher here – I don’t even want to have that job anymore.

    God Bless us, God bless the children like myself who bought into this nightmare. And I hope that somehow, the young people of today will get the truth and stop the enslavement.

    • Gift of Mercy

      Hi Mall. New to Disqus..plz forgiv if i wander too far. However, we have an account called InterestFree on Twitter where we have advocated a return to Scripture : All Scripture contain verses which prohibit the Charging of Interest on Money-Loans or indeed in any Transaction. Problem is, that most Banks operate ON INTEREST and also charge USURY, which is COMPOUNDED-INTEREST. Very expensive ! Also inherently unfair as i found it when i wrote my THESIS on this subject. Most people can’t even Calculate the Application of Interest / Usury as applies to their accounts, because Schools and Universities DON’T TEACH THEM HOW ! Entire System is one of THEFT and FRAUD, operating under “LEGAL COVER”, whilst a desperately poor person that “steals” a loaf of bread gets JAILED for about a YEAR !! The “SHYLOCKS” of this world, the BANKSTERS…have NO SCRUPLES, at all and MUST BE STOPPED. After all, they have had MORE THAN A CENTURY of FRAUD, CORRUPTION, THEFT and in many cases, MURDER. Read “JFK”….Take Care..

  • http://www.roadoutofdebt.com/ Nico

    Sad but true! With the student loan debt being bigger than the credit card debt, one should think why he would want to go to college in the first place!

  • http://www.rishonan.net Rishona

    Great article…and I think that it displays the urgency of the situation. However as a college graduate with more than $100K in student loans (and working a low-level job as a secretary), I can tell you that the problem is rooted in college tuition…and not student loans. Amazingly, I received over $35,000 in grant and scholarship money in addition to my student loans. The price of college is just so astronomical….and I cannot see the justification. I work at a college, and the tuition and fees for two students pay my annual salary. So it’s not ME who is getting the money. Instead millions of dollars are being funneled to administrators, campus ‘improvements’ (like art sculptures that cost $500K a piece), and flashy recruitment initiatives. The college where I work even had an ad run during the Super Bowl (give me a break)!
    Debt in general is a societal problem that few of us can escape; especially if you make under $50K on an annual basis. The truth of the matter is if you want a place to live, a car (just one…not multiple), furniture, and meals on a regular basis…you have to take on some debt in order to make that happen (on a salary of $50K or less). While I am $100K in debt with student loans, I don’t have children, I don’t have a new car (and never had one), I don’t own real estate, I don’t have high balances on my credit cards (about $1K). So my debt is concentrated in one area as opposed to being all over the place. In addition, student loans are not too tough to manage when you do not have any money. The income contingent plan takes your payments down a lot. If you are unemployed, you can just put them into forbearance. You can’t do that with credit cars, your car note, or even your mortgage. So student loans are actually the least “hellish” debt of them all when you think about it.

  • M Fonseca

    I can’t believe it took people this long to realize what a ripoff college has become. The only thing I don’t understand is the attack on college as a whole. The right degree from the right college is still a worthwhile investment. The problem is the thousands of mediocre students majoring in French literature or equally useless subjects at mediocre colleges and universities. And paying big bucks for the privilege. This is a waste of time. The liberal arts are a waste of time. The idea that everyone must go to college, even if it’s a crappy college that no one has ever heard of and even if you are a crappy student who does nothing but drink and sleep, this is an idea that is past due for rethinking, especially now that it’s forcing people into debts they can’t pay off. But not recognizing that there is a place at all for college is just throwing out the baby with the bathwater. College degrees shouldn’t be dismissed – they just need to start showing that they are a good return on the investment. The ivy tower needs to finally get its head out of its you-know-what and start taking responsibility for the tremendous financial investment that students are making. It needs to start producing that return on their investment – it’s too much money to spend on “finding yourself” or pursuing a mild interest in medieval literature.

    I say down with the liberal arts, except as electives. Departments funnel average students into useless majors because they need the enrollment numbers to sustain themselves. They publish silly lists of things you can do with their degrees that are things you can do with any degree, but probably won’t find a job doing in the first place. They talk about how they are relevant to the real world and current events, but they are so deeply buried in arcane subject matter that they don’t even realize how irrelevant they have become. Colleges foster the myth that the liberal arts are important simply because they are afraid to abandon an entrenched academic system more appropriate to idle noblemen of past centuries than to the middle class kids of today who need a real job so they can support their families and themselves, not a bunch of enlightening trivia that will turn them into well-read waitresses and cashiers.

  • Jeff

    I will be 300,000 dollars in student loan debt by the time I finish dental school. Cheers.

  • Tammy

    I am over $90,000 in debt with Student loans. I went to a “private” technical school also known as ITT. They will let anyone in and the education you receive is a joke. My degree is in Criminal Justice and I can tell you now it should be a crime to charge someone that much money for a BS in a field were you will never see $90,000 a year!! Every year schools talk about tuition increases… When will it stop? The saying you have to spend money to make money is no longer the case. You have to spend money to spend more money.

  • J

    High tuition is only part of the problem. You never hear stories about the people who went to a college they could afford. They weren’t staking their future on getting 6 figure offers right out of college. They might have even worked to pay some of their expenses.

    Speaking of expenses, they certainly didn’t take out student loans to buy a new truck or finance spring break.

    It’s too bad you never hear those stories, especially since they’re the ones who– after having their modest student loans paid off in 5-10 years– are probably gonna end up bailing out those who were less responsible.

    • Borsabil

      You’re talking about eighteen year old kids being offered tens of thousands in debt. Pay it back in the ‘distant’ future when you’re like thirty or something, an entenity to the average teenager. And lo and behold, put a bunch of teenagers in a building, with zero expectations or pressure to do well, and we all tsk tsp as they spend their time drinking, smoking pot and fornicating.

      These kids are not blameless, they are legal eu adults, but have no doubt they’re being preyed upon. The problem is who will eat the trillion plus losses that are all but guaranteed into the future? Every last cent is government backstopped, so of course it will be the taxpayer, obamma is being funded by the banisters to make sure of it.

      These debts should never heve been made non dischargeable, nor should they have been government assured. Just remove those two factors and not only would tuition be a fraction of what it is now, but only students who could either afford to or were smart enough

    • Borsabil

      You’re talking about eighteen year old kids being offered tens of thousands in debt. Pay it back in the ‘distant’ future when you’re like thirty or something, an entenity to the average teenager. And lo and behold, put a bunch of teenagers in a building, with zero expectations or pressure to do well, and we all tsk tsp as they spend their time drinking, smoking pot and fornicating.

      These kids are not blameless, they are legal eu adults, but have no doubt they’re being preyed upon. The problem is who will eat the trillion plus losses that are all but guaranteed into the future? Every last cent is government backstopped, so of course it will be the taxpayer, obamma is being funded by the banksters to make sure of it.

      These debts should never heve been made non dischargeable, nor should they have been government assured. Just remove those two factors and not only would tuition be a fraction of what it is now, but only students who could either afford or were smart enough would actually go. The rest would not have wasted three to four years of their lives and ended up in crushing debt. So let’s thank the bankers and universities and corrupt politicians for this mess.

  • http://Theeconomiccollapseblog.comandEndoftheamericancream.com BeckyT

    July 12, 2011

    I’m writing a short research paper on the benefits, liabilities, worthwhile-ness or lack there of, of a college education.

    I’m reading through your articles, but nowhere does it state who YOU are. In my works cited page, I would like to give credit where it’s due, but if there’s not name on your articles, should I just credit the website.

    Please help!!!

    • Michael

      Becky:

      You can give credit to “Michael T. Snyder” as I am the author of these articles.

      Michael

  • Borsabil

    The debt is non dischargeable. It will hang around the necks of the proud owners of assorted liberal arts degrees as they attempt to pay back a compounding amount in an environment of negative real wage growth. Hence the appeal of a dyed in the wool socialist like Obummer. Not to worry then he will ‘forgive’ those debts, as long as you promise to do your very best to pay them back and you really really can’t find the money. Meantime who in their right minds would make any attempt to pay off a student loan if Obama gets back in?

    But let’s be clear, college tutition has increased for exactly the same reason house prices increased, leverage. You give people ‘free’ money and ramp up demand, then price will rise to the stratosphere. Just as some were happy to pay a million for a so cal McMansion with Chinese drywall that will give you cancer others will happily borrow to attend a university that provides an education that their fathers generation would laugh at. There is only one solution to asset bubbles, remove the leverage and let the irresponsible and stupid eat the losses. The student debt bubble will collapse have no doubt, but like the housing bubble, expect the many to vote for a socialist to pass the losses onto the taxpayer.

  • Ryan

    Is there anyway I could get the sources for the 32 factoids? Thanks in advance, great article.

  • Mike future doc

    Everything I read on here sounds like everybody’s sob story on how they want to bring down the big man because they can’t be him. Stupid typical Americans wanting to blame everyone else for their problems. If you want to be the person sitting a top a major company then pursue it. Work for someone to learn the ways of business, get a business type degree to learn about international business, and quit trying to blame the people that did their work on their way to getting where they are. I read someone wanted to pull those people with shirt and ties out of their positions and throw them on the streets where they belong. Sounds like a jealous lazy person who has no desire to do anything but blame their problems on someone. You can even read on here where individuals say they went to college and have their degree and all loan debt but I seriously doubt they went considering they spelled college “collage”. And as for the articles statistics, you forget to mention that the price of food, gas, vehicles, clothes, and housing have all increased by about the same percentage. The average income has also increased. And mr article writer if you believe that all education is pointless you may want to look at the number of foreign students in American universities that were expected to know what they wanted to do for life by age 15. Education is necessary for the maintaining of democracy but people like yourself do not understand this. But then again what would I know, I’m only about to start medical school in the fall and serve a rural community of my choice.

  • Winston Lee

    What is this thing about needing jobs? Why not be self-employed? I was unemployed sending out resumes and it occurred to me I would have to explain why I could do “their job”.

    I figured explaining why I could do “their job” was a waste of my time. I now do “my job” and have never been unemployed in 30 years.

  • Bill

    I’ve never met a more pessimistic bunch. You all have given up.

  • Cathy

    Higher education is everything in Corporate America. I went to a two year school and paid my own way thru from 1988-1992. People in my generation were so quick to put me down for attending a two year school. I finished my associates degree and started working. Many people in my generation told me to quit working and borrow for my last two years. I went back to a four year university and finished my undergrad in business in three years. The company I worked for paid for it. My boss encouraged me to get my undergrad and I listened. I was downsized December of 2011. The job market has changed drastically in the past five years. Almost eighty percent of the jobs I apply for require a four year degree in business. You always have to go back to school. I plan to go back for my M.B.A. I laugh at people my age with a liberal arts degree. Those degrees should not be around. It makes me sick when I hear american complain about people from other countries coming here and becoming our doctors, engineers, scientists and pharmacists. You have to go to college in that field to get those positions. We have a global economy and that is not changing. With a global economy people need to have a higher education for entry level jobs. My father graduated high school in 1947. He told me about 10% of our engineers had a four year degree in 1947. Of course, in 1947 you did not have to hire a female, a black male or any minority. Who do you think they are trying to weed out?

  • http://none Ludy

    I’ve go few questions for Maria:1. How your “unqualified” with no prior experience, or education besides high school diploma daughter was offered the job in reputable company? 2. With many working hours even with the lowest wages one can’t afford to buy new car in her first year of work?

    It is easy to patt yourself on the shoulder for doing the right thing for your kid, especially when you’ve got friends all in right places for job placements and vages.
    My son graduated from University thx to his good standing and scholarships, he is not in debt, yet can’t find the job even closely related to his degree, working at chemical lab long hours for small wages. I don’t have “right friends” in right places to hang him a good job on the platter like you did for your daughter. I guess she is just nothing but lucky, that is all!
    In regards (some poster) put that it is better to study engineering, or medical fiels so called hard science as oppose soft science and liberal arts- what would be world around us become with only scientists- one huge grey boredom! I am not envy doctors, who truly hate their patients on daily basis because they now have safe jobs prospects.
    I also know very soon all these “hot occupations” will oversaturate the job market as well, despite of current media propaganda.

  • Charles

    When I left high school I decided that working would be alot faster in getting ahead of my peers who were enrolling in college. I moved out of the 3rd world country ( I am a US citizen) I lived in and found a job as a pipefitter in Boston, one of the highest paid blue collar jobs in America. After a couple of years as being an apprentice I hurt my back badly from just lifting something awkwardly, I am very strong and have never had a back issue, this set me back as I had to have surgery and this process took two years from start to recovery. I am now enrolled in a community college and am about to transfer to a Chemical Engineering college. I believe the hard work I was taught as a laborer enabled me to apply it to my studies, I would never have been able to do what I ve have done without that experience. I have help from my family but I am able to study without working because of aide from the government(grants). I intend to write a check to the Fed to pay back this ‘free money’ as soon as I am able.
    So whats my point?- take this story as you like and that will tell you which person you are. Are you half full or half empty? What are you going to do to make this country better? Are you even going to do something? Or are you going to say something and hope someone else will fix it- because thats their job? It starts with you. I am truly grateful to America and the opportunity she provides. If you can do something to prevent America from collapsing, do it. We can all change what is happening all it takes is a few to lead by example and the rest will follow.

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com wildlifer

    I really feel that there is no right answer. I truly believe that if you want to be successful you need to do your homework, make your decision, and be willing to give it all you got. I’ll have about 10,000 in loan next year when I graduate (maybe 16,000 but I’m still debating on that) but thanks to that I’ll be making 60,000, as apposed to 23,000, after I graduate. Just know what you are going to do, not all people should go to college and not all people shouldn’t.

    College isn’t a “scam”, people thinking that they’ll get an awesome amazing job just because they fork over 40k for a piece of paper are scamming themselves.

  • Charles

    College is way too expensive but it is nothing shy of significant. It’s an experience that you have to make the best of. And most of those statistics are the result of lazy students in America not colleges themselves. Yes college may not be worth a lifetime of debt. No average person can pay $40,000 a yr for school but college opens door to opportunities that no other resource can. The lack of opportunities is what makes it seem less like a need. Still, however the doors opened and shut on a college graduate might not ever even be open to one who didn’t attend.

  • cole

    Awesome

  • TK

    f you borrow money, you pay it back. That’s what we teach our children. There is no entitlement to a free college education. I read today about a woman who owes 200K for her sociology degree. Its sad that someone would borrow that much money to pursue these worthless degree programs. Although vocational schools are not as prestigious, this is where you need to go if you don’t come from a rich family. This student loan crisis is largely a result of the middle classes wanting what the wealthy have.

  • AJ

    TK’s comment is the typical blame the victim approach. The industry is filled with pitfalls, accrediting bogus subjects (astrology, alternative medicine, etc), missing statute of limitations to sue schools due to failure to get legal representation, high costs, poor education at universities due to research emphasis over teaching. So instead of admitting and fixing the problems the US Department of Education has engaged a spin campaign to minimize the problems and this is done by blaming the victims-the students! They hid the true default rates by only counting defaults in the first two years in the student loan default cohort rate where previously it was for the entire time-allowing bad schools to remain open. They sanction accreditors who buck industry trends to try to raise standards. So no, a college degree is now a trap, avoid paying for it and educate yourself online. Sitting in a class of 300 people isn’t really an educational experience anyway.

  • Nadinbe

    First off, if parents taught their children college is expenive and college is hard you need to stay focused most kids might actually make it through. My teacher from vo tech tells me now that you will start in a class of 300 and there might on be 20 to 50 of those kids who will stick it through. I am only a high school SENIOR but I do know what I want and I do know that its going to be expensive and I will have a debt but at least I do will do what I love. If parents were teaching their kids to go to college for something reasonable like a nurse, doctor, and law, kids might actually make it through. I am going to be a nurse. There is progams to help these students with financial problems, many college who also help. Most colleges base intution off of your house income anymore. So don’t set here tell us that our kids this. Parents should be just as liable as a school for encouraging their students to do the best and achieve it because some parents never tell their kids that. MY MOM DID!!

  • Nicole

    does anyone know who wrote this article? he made some good points and i’m trying to use this stuff for class and i need to cite my source in my paper.

    • Michael

      My name is Michael and I wrote this article. :)

      Michael

      • http://theeconomiccollapsblog.com Jan

        Michael, do you have a last name? Most Colleges expect full names for citations and I too would like to use excerpts from this article for a project I am working on.

        • Michael

          Jan:

          Yes, my full name is “Michael Snyder”

          Michael

  • Nick

    Nadinbe, You seem like a nice kid who appears to have “their head on their shoulders” so to speak. You also have come from a privileged family and should thank your mother everyday for being there for you. Don’t take it for granted for a second. I’m really offended by your lack of perspective on the world however, and you need to realize you have no fucking idea what your talking about. It’s not your fault I’m sure your a very intelligent 18 year old. However, you have zero life experience and shouldn’t ever post your opinion on anything because it’s a flawed just from being so naive. Your last Phrase MY MOM DID! show’s how young you actually are. When I was 12 both my parent’s were addicted to meth, and abandoned our family leaving me to take care of my 2 younger brothers. This was the 1970’s so social services were not really apparent at the time. Which meant that the role of mother, father, and financial provider was forced onto me. I managed to get up every morning, make my brothers breakfast lunch and supper, go to school and work an 8 hour shift at the old dutch chip factory in our town. You talk about how parent’s should educate their kids, mine didn’t and I still managed to get an education. New rule of thumb for you… don’t talk about parenting till you’ve had to do it, and don’t talk about financial assistance till you’ve had to make a mortgage payment or buy groceries for someone other then yourself. Your age limits your perspective on life. You still seem to be playing the “game” The object of this game is accumulation. Till you learn that most things westerners have (including degree’s) actually have zero value and are all temporary you won’t ever be happy. You wan’t your degree so you can make more money, so you can have the bigger house, so you can have the car, the tv’s the cell phones, all that shit we place so much value on, is all going back into the box as soon as the game’s over kiddo. Life is sacrifice, My advice is don’t go to university, Save your money for experiences, take 2 or 3 weeks a year and just go somewhere’s majestic and don’t get caught up in the game, live life on your own terms

    • Adam

      Nick-

      You should really read what you wrote. Realize how much of a condescending prick you sound like. You’re telling us how to live our lives, then you say “live life on your own terms”. Mixed messages there, buddy. Who are you to tell people what is important to them? You think because you went through a “semi-rough” childhood that you know the key to life and everyone else is an idiot. You sir, should not be posting your opinion anywhere.

  • don

    We loan money for worthless degrees. If I want a basket weaving degree, I get the same loan as someone seeking an engrg degree. Under the guise of making college education affordable for everyone (Which I believe in) because it makes us a stronger society and more competitive, we forgot to focus our energy on those areas we all pay lip service to (e.g. “we need more engineers”). In the end we throw a lot of money at the institutions, and they do what businesses do best—satisfy their customer. they make it easy on the students to get a degree, and they willingly take the loan handouts they are given to build the business in return. And the gov’t through unintended consequences feeds the whole thing by guaranteeing the investor that they will never lose their money by making certain that not even bankruptcy will free the waiter/waitress from their debt. So keep getting those art degrees for 75000 or those ancient language degrees for a 100,000. The only loser in the long run is the student.

  • William

    Honestly, I think that those of you who strongly believe that college is worthless should be ashamed of yourselves. Although all of these things about college written in this article are true, I sincerely believe that the benefits of college outweighs its costs. Those of you who believe that “degrees are worthless,” what does a degree mean? It means you can grasp a job faster than a high school graduate. High school graduate unemployment rates are over double the amount of college graduate unemployment rate (9.7% to 4%). Do you honestly believe that not going to college is good for you? It truly isn’t, because post secondary education pretty much is the key to being successful in life. i. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, people who graduate with bachelor’s degrees will earn nearly twice as much over the course of their careers as those who complete only high school. College grads earn $2.1 million in lifetime income compared with $1.2 million for high school grads. The cost of four years’ tuition for a public school amounts to approximately $28,000 and for private school is about $100,000. Even if they go with the more expensive educational option, college grads net on average an extra $800,000 in lifetime earnings. Also, in a bleak job market, job offerings are becoming more competitive. i. Right now, there are 409 job listings for those with just their High School Diploma in Arizona. On the other hand, also in Arizona, there are 703 job listings for those with their Bachelor’s Degree. While 703 jobs for Bachelor’s Degree holders may sound like a lot, more than 8,000 students graduated from Arizona State University alone in 2009 with more graduates projected from the three state universities this year. Obviously, the cost of college does not outweigh its benefits.

    Logic’d

  • Allyn

    I agree with a lot of what this article says, but there are college degrees that pay off in the long run. This includes going to an expensive private school. I used the US Army GI Bill to go to a state school and still graduated with $3000 debt. I studied History and found no job in my field. Returned to school (community college) for Nursing and found work. Pursued a Bachelors that gave me NO higher pay in my field. The Bachelors allowed me to get a Masters in Nursing as a Nurse Practitioner at Yale University that cost $54,000. I worked on weekends and full time as a RN while in Grad School. I could have paid less at a state school. My salary doubled to well over $100,000 fresh out of school. So, yes going to college and getting a grdaute degree more than paid off. Going to Yale gave me a great education and made me marketable all over the US. In this instance college and expensive higher education paid off.

  • Allyn

    I was also able to pay off my student loans in a year and half. I wasn’t going to pay the minimum and make Sallie Mae any richer.

  • Denise

    So what am I supposed to do if college degrees are “worthless”? I graduated from high school in 2011 and attended one semester at my local community college.
    I have 5 months worth of customer service experience from working with Kohl’s as a seasonal employee and that’s all.

    What am I supposed to do? I don’t really enjoy customer service jobs and I like going to school. Also, there really aren’t a lot of jobs available and the ones that are, are given to the people with the most experience.

    So can you guys tell me? Because I’m seriously contemplating killing myself. I don’t have money, I’m living with my boyfriend and his parents and I feel really bad. (I’m 19 years old) I can’t live with my parents because there isn’t any room for me, I moved out my senior year of high school and they had to move to a smaller house, I can’t even sleep on the couch because my other sister is sleeping there. Anyway, I was considering moving out of state because CA isn’t doing it for me and I wanted to attend an Oregon university, and I figured that if I moved oout of state to pursue a bachelor’s degree and then go to OHSU for their P.A. program that all the debt I’d get myself into would be worth it in the end because I’d have a good paying job. But after reading all this crap about degrees being worthless, what am I supposed to do?
    I don’t have any friends, just my boyfriend and family. No one seems to care to listen to my plans or give me any guidance as to what I should do. I’m not a weak person, I’ve gone through a lot of horrible things in my young life, but this makes me feel so hopeless. That there isn’t a way to better my life. I thought college would be my route out of this hell hole of a financial struggle, but you guys make it seem like it’s not even worth it.
    I simply don’t know what to do and am contemplating suicide. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only 19 year old contemplating this either.

    • Michael

      Denise:

      Never, ever, ever give up.

      No matter how dark things look right now, there is always a way out.

      Perhaps college would be a good option for you. Just try to not go into too much debt.

      But even more important is that you realize is that life is not about material possessions.

      The God of the universe created you and He loved you very much and He wants to have a relationship with you.

      You can read more about this right here….

      http://whatdoesthebiblesayabout.com/archives/what-does-the-bible-say-about-salvation

      Michael

    • Kara

      Denise:

      I am currently a junior majoring in Earth Science at Western Oregon University(just north of UO) and I can tell you right now that pursuing a degree in science is totally worth it! I’m a small town girl from Washington and moving to Oregon to come to college is the best choice I have made thus far. I’m from a single parent household and my tuition costs more than my mom makes in a year but when I graduate I will be able to apply for jobs where I will be making upwards of 50,000$ a year entry level pay or more after grad school. I have made life long friends and established a family of sorts with other students within my major.What those statistics don’t tell you is how many of those students that can’t find jobs majored in pointless degrees like art history or social sciences. They also don’t tell you what the majors are of the people who don’t study and I can guarantee you they are most likely not a science major or at least a science major with a good GPA. And just to clarify when I say science major I’m not referring to social sciences or psychology, I’m talking about the students that spend over 10 hours in the lab weekly, biology, chemistry, geology. Those statistics also don’t tell what the grade point average is for those students that spend less than 10 hours a week studying.Some friends and I often joke D’s get degrees and that sad part is that it is true. I can tell you from experience that you can not get a 4.0 in college if you only study less than 10 hours a week. When applying for a job in your field or for grad school GPA is a factor they will take into account getting a 2.0 (C average) is not going to impress an employer even if you have a degree.When I was a freshman I didn’t study at all and I my GPA suffered. I now study over 20 hours a week and basically live in the lab and my GPA is over a whole grade point better and I’m working between 25-30hours a week.If you are think about nursing there as always been a high demand for nurses especially well-educated ones! If you go to college for the right reasons and get a degree that is meaningful and has application to the real world then it is not useless. And for those people that think going to college is to make more money and be able to buy nice things HELL YEAH it is! The cost of living is going up and from the looks of things I’m not going to receive the money that I have been paying to the government through taxes for the time I have spent working since I was 16 (I’m 21 now). So yes I want to make a lot of money to not only be able to afford nice things and go on vacation, but to cover my ass when social security is non-existent so I don’t have to retire at the age of 80. While those statistics may be true they don’t tell you the whole story. Pursuing a degree in science or nursing is never a waste of time or money. I think you definitely should pursue it. It will be a choice that you won’t regret in the long run. Don’t give up! There are lots of ways to pay for college and many options once you enroll.

    • Sean

      Don’t give up, Denise. The world needs thoughtful, intelligent people like you. Look up the top paying college degrees, and pursue something solid like accounting, engineering, medical, dental, legal, etc. Or go to a tech school and learn a trade. It doesn’t sound glamourous, but you can live a comfortable and fulfilling life. Believe in yourself. Best of luck!

    • Sebastian

      Denise

      PLEASE DO NOT CONSIDER SUICIDE. We all go through tough times, believe me. These times are exactly what makes us who we are. You want it easy? People who have it handed to them are WORTHLESS IDIOT sons and daughters, losers. You are special! You have a boyfriend who loves you, and family. Trust me, I’m 35, and by the time you reach my age you don’t want anyone else other than those most important to you, the rest are just extras in your life. And I will be tough on you here, you haven’t thought it out, suicide is an easy way out for you, but creates a life of sadness and sorrow for those who love you, and that’s not fair to you or them, so screw those people that make you feel like crap, and know that you have the power to make yourself feel better, and do anything, REALLY. People love you Denise, YOU love you, don’t let you or them down, its sucks to do so, and you really have a’lot to accomplish.

  • Madre

    Everyone has made good valid points. As with everything in life, gather as much information you can (quite easy with the internet, blogs, etc.) and KEEP what applies to you and TOSS what doesn’t. One size or piece of advice does not fit everyone – it never will!
    1. You will ALWAYS have a better chance at success (with or without a degree) when you apply yourself fully. Make choices, live with the consequences good & bad.
    2. Enjoying what you do makes #1 much easier.
    3. Sometimes you need to pay your dues to get to #2.
    4. Due to the current rate of unemployment (been there too, even w/20 yrs experience) and as a hiring manager, I have to use a college degree or other certicifation as criteria to weed out the best candidates on paper.
    5. Getting ANY type of formal education shows commitment to long term goals. Technology gives us immediate gratification – life doesn’t work that way. It’s taken me 25 yrs working up through ‘worker bee’ & mgmt ranks to ENJOY what I do and earn a comfortable living. By applying something I’ve learned from every ‘stepping stone’ job (even a Taco Bell cashier so quick knocking the menial jobs) I’ve been able to cross industries & work w/people better. After being laid off, I finally took my own advice & obtained a professional certification which opened up opportunities not available to me otherwise (#4).
    6. Times are incredibly tough now, so we need to look toward the future and build your own opportunities. To do that requires intelligent people that CARE – whether you have a degree or not. Keeping jobs here and stopping outsourcing in all industries would certainly help!
    7. DON’T EVER GIVE UP. Be open to alternate methods of securing an education, getting real world experience, and finding what makes you happy. Network with people (not just online) to learn about opportunities-then sieze them! We all have bills to pay, so salary and advancement must be considered – it’s how much you need/want to live your life.
    8. GOOD LUCK to everyone!

  • Denise

    Thank you so much for the advice! I didn’t expect any replies. But just to update, I’m still living with my boyfriend, we’re finishing up a semester at our local college and transferring out to Oregon. I’m a pretty committed person and I know I can make things work, I opened up to my family, and they trust that I’ll succeed. Once again thank you so much for the reassurance, it means a lot! I trust that I’ll get through everything, be it good or bad.

    :)
    Denise

    • Michael

      Thank you for the update Denise. It is good to hear you are doing well.

      Michael

  • TJ

    Dear Micheal,
    I love your articles (especially the ones on the hellhole of Detroit,MI). I can tell you personally how Detroit changed within the past 10 years. I recently graduated high school in Detroit, MI. I wanted to know what are the best majors to study in college. I am considering to study architecture in college. College here in Michigan is very expensive ($25,000+ at a major university and $8,000+ at a community college). Also, scholarships are very limited and mostly income based (a good point to mention in your next article about colleges). Keep up the good work Micheal.

    Best Regards,
    TJ

    • Michael

      TJ:

      Thank you for that very nice comment TJ. :)

      Michael

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  • amanda

    I think these quotes are great for anyone interested in choosing a college. Too many students don’t pick colleges relistically because they’re not aware of the burden student loans will place on them after they graduate.

  • ello

    I think that if you want to have a good job and make alot of money then you should spend the money to go to college.

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      yes my son he want’s loan he is doing makinkele engineering in bangalore technological institute .2nd year he may need sum of rupees 2.50.000 for the three years what all the document you may need please send an email i am doing real estate i don’t have I T threatens please send your email thank you

  • http://www.facebook.com/aaron.freisinger Aaron Freisinger

    I wish I would have had access to this information before I decided to go to a private college as a homeowner/father. I wish I would have known all of this before I decided on a major that would not come close to paying the 80k in student loans I accumulated. I wish I would have listened to my academic adviser’s gentle recommendation to pick a different major. Basically, I wish that I had the wisdom that I gained after making all of the wrong decisions about my education and career path…but I didn’t. I wish to god(or God)that I wouldn’t have ruined my chances of utilizing my pre-college career path by making terrible decisions and making myself un-hireable by using alcohol to avoid the nagging voice of my conscience that, I’m pretty sure, was telling me to get out before it was too late…Now, is it too late? I don’t think so, but I haven’t been able find evidence to the contrary BECAUSE OF THE POOR CHOICES I made. If I could italicize, underline and make bold the word I, I would. I guess what I mean to say is that I understand and accept that I did this to myself, so I don’t need any responses telling me to lie in the bed that I made. I lie there every day. What I would forever be in debt to is the advice or direction that anyone could give me now that I’m in this position…I am a convicted felon. I have almost 100k in student loan debt. My loans are in default. The only work I can find is manual labor, which I didn’t do for a single day before I put myself in this position, though I have definitely done it since. My 8 years of sales experience are moot, at this point. I’m not sure if I can go back and finish my degree that I’m one semester away from completing and I don’t know that a degree in Philosophy would do a former aspiring college professor, given the aforementioned items, any good. What I do know is that I have a whole lot of life left to live and I don’t want to spend it as a laborer, or an ex-felon, or a single dad with very little prospect for future prosperity, or a divorcee, or a 33 year old living with his parents. Michael, or anyone else who reads this, could you point me in the direction of where I can start to solve ANY of this? I would spend my life as a humanitarian volunteer with no income and gladly forget about the middle class dream that my parents taught me, or honestly spend my life in indentured servitude to anyone who could even help me get the ball rolling. I would gladly sign a contract saying as such, if I had any idea of how I can assure that my 10 year old daughter doesn’t ever have to worry about the terrible decision her dad made when he was too young to know better or care. To solidify my point, I can honestly say that I would walk or run or swim or pogo stick my way across the world if anyone would help us. And I would do it with a smile on my face.

  • anonymous

    HAUSTIN LAWSON TRUST LOAN FIRM

    DEAR LOAN SEEKER

    *Do you need a loan to pay off your debt?

    *Do you have bad credit ?

    *Do u you need loan to start doing business? if yes, UNIVERSAL TRUST LOAN INC

    INCORPORATED, are Granting you personal loan, Business loan, mortgage loan,

    Construction loan, Debt loan, Student loan, Auto loan, e.t.c. loan is range

    from $10.000 ”min” to Euro10 million”max”@2% rate if u are interested kindly

    send response to:

    haustinlawsonloanfirm@live.com

    *Full Name:_________

    *Address:_________

    *Tell:_________

    *loan amount:_________

    *Loan duration:_________

    *Country:_________

    *Purpose of loan:_________

    *Next of kind :_________

    *Email :_________

    *Awaiting your Response:_______

    haustinlawsonloanfirm@live.com

    best regard

    HAUSTIN LAWSON

  • http://www.youngisthan.in/ youngisthan

    ya…………….. i think many times about going to college once again and enjoys that life…..

  • Ing. Ambiental Daniel Morales

    Necesito mayor información

  • Mr.Williams Andres

    End your financial worries today:

    I can smile with this God Fearing man I received a loan of $50,000 and two of my colleagues have also received loans from this man without any difficulty. I advise you not to choose the wrong person if you actually apply for a cash loan for your project and any other. I publish this message because Mr.Andres Williams made me feel blessed with his loan. It is through a friend I met this honest and generous God fearing man who helped me get this loan fund to regulate your life, You needed financial help, You are stuck, No access to bank credit, or do not have the benefit of a bank, you need to finance your construction, real estate development, creating your own business up your personal business, you have seen and need to make money, a bad credit or need money to pay bills or debts. So I advise you out there to kindly contact and meet you for the services you ask of him. His contact address: andresloanfirm07@yahoo.ca
    Contact him for more information, be clear and honest.andresloanfirm07@yahoo.ca

  • Mrs Cindy Battye,

    Hello Every One,
    My Name is Mrs Cindy Battye,, i live in USA and life is worth living comfortably for me and my family now and i really have never seen goodness shown to me this much in my life as i am a struggling mum with three kids and i have been going through a serious problem as my husband encountered a terrible accident last two weeks, and the doctors states that he needs to undergo a delicate surgery for him to be able to walk again and i could not afford the bills for his surgery then i went to the bank for a loan and they turn me down stating that i have no credit card, from there i run to my father and he was not able to help, then when i was browsing through yahoo answers and i came across a loan lender MR TONY HARTON,who provides loans at an affordable interest rate and i have been hearing about so many scams on the internet but at this my desperate situation, i had no choice than to give it an attempt and surprisingly it was all like a dream, i received a loan of $50,000 USD and i payed for my husband surgery and thank GOD today he is okay and can walk and is working and the burden is longer so much on me any more and we can feed well and my family is happy today and i said to my self that i will shout aloud to the world of the wonders of GOD to me through this GOD fearing lender MR TONY HARTON and i will advise anyone in genuine and serious need of loan to contact this GOD fearing man via..tonyharton007@gmail.com,and i want you all to pray for this man for me

    THANKS

    Mrs Cindy Battye,

  • Mrs Derek Sivers

    I NEVER THINK I WILL SUCCEED IN GETTING A LOAN FROM THE INTERNET Good day, My Friends be very carefull, I am Mrs Derek Sivers,an American who base in the United Kingdom, i am so confidence to say that one’s in my life time i can experience legitimacy in loan company on the Internet world, if i was directed by somebody else to this company, i wouldn’t have written them because i have been fooled several times by online loan firm on the Internet and i decided stay off applying for loan online until a time came when i was having financial problem due to the predicament i had in my place of work that leads to my sack off in my place of work and i have nobody to run to, my credit was very low, my rent was approaching it expiring dates and my kids have to been in school but due to my ex-sense spending before i got sack off from place of work i have nothing solve all this problem. I have no other option than to come online looking for online loan firm that will help me out of my financial problem and i came across a loan firm and i was scammed of 4,500 in my attempt of obtaining a loan from them and i almost committed suicide and i ask my self is the end of my life because i am a dieing mother of 4 kids to take care of, where will i get money to finance their education and pay my bills? all this are the questions that kept running inside my mind and became frustrated in the process of doing that and a words of encouragement came into me instantly saying it is not over yet, keep trying and you will definitely got in touch with your helper very soon and i stood up and said i will give this a last try and if nothing happens that means their is know hope for me any longer. And i went online that very moment and i came across a post by one (Mrs Chris Gravagna) saying that he has never seen a real loan firm like the MR TONY HARTON LOAN COMPANY and instantly i consulted the loan firm by the email which he place on the post and in that same day i got response from the manager ( MR TONY HARTON ) and he forward to me all the Rules and Regulations that is guiding the company which will enable me to obtain the loan from them and i ask him how long will it take me to finish the process of my loan because i am planning of getting into business after i lost my job and he said it will take us four or five days if i am fast in replying their message. I as him, hope i am not going send any money to them because i was told here in my country that i shouldn’t send any money in getting a loan and he replied by saying that it surprise him when i said that because their is no loan firm online who will render service to a loan seeker without him/her paying anything upfront. It sound very hurt to his hearing and he took it as a pain and explained everything to me and when i have a rethink about it i discovered it was true and that was were those false loan firm took advantage in defrauding people of their had earn money and he gave me his words that i should go on with them and he will took me by surprise that they are truly for real and i went on and apply for a business loan of $90,000.00 USD for the duration of 6years and i paid all the charges that are needed to be paid and like he said he is going to surprise me, that was what he did, it was then i knew that there are still real loan company on the internet otherwise i wouldn’t have known. here is the consultation address: tonyharton007@gmail.com,if you want to consult them for more information

    Thanks

    Mrs Derek Sivers,

  • Mrs Richard Cynthia

    My Name Is Mrs Richard Cynthia, I want You all To be careful here,nobody can help you here or even suggest how you can get financial assistance or any answer of a loan lender to your question,you MUST ignore,because they are SCAMS…real SCAMS…i was a victim of which i was ripped thousands of dollars…well thank God for a MAVIS LOAN FIRM,I was referred to her by my cousin,who is by name,Mr.Clement Jude Of pay day loan firm.They made my life a valuable one,and gave it a meaning.I was approved loan of $125,000.00usd AND IN 28 HOURS after meeting up to their necessary requirements,my loan was deposited in my bank account.Though I was very nervous with the loan firm at the first place due to my previous bad experiences,especially when the issue of me settling the transfer charges came up,I hold on to my faith due to the fact that my relative referred me,got it cleared and as God will have it,little did I know that my financial shortcomings has come to a reality. If not for that quick referral from a relative of that genuine source ,I would have regretted my total life,because at that point in time I just divorced the father of my son,and my son (Michael) was faced with a ” between life and death ” situation ..I was faced with his hospital bills and was also faced with foreclosure at my apartment.Details of the GOD SENT and RELIEVING source won’t be disclosed to you for now, for fear of impersonation ( because it has being discovered that some persons are not really in need of financial help,but are there to impersonate real loan lenders through their phone numbers and email accounts,and acting to be them where necessary to those in real need)…I couldn’t comment on your post because it was a public place and I fear you would fall into the hand of all these fraudulent loan officers (even in US) like how they ripped me off.You must be able to convince me real hard,and provide good proofs,before I can give you the full details of this legitimate loan officer..Their charge is very affordable and reliable compare to many out there,their interest rates just 2.5%,little documentation,and little credit check(irrespective of your credit score,but you MUST have a good and liable income source) Her Name is MRS STELLA MAVIS, Feel free to email her at his via Email:stellamavisloanlender91@gmail.com”and you will be free from scams. thanks as you read the greatest testimony of my life.

    Mrs Richard Cynthia

  • Ijese Joyce Gold

    I’m JOYCE by name. I live in USA, i want to use this medium to alert all loan seekers to be very careful because there are scammers everywhere.Few months ago I was financially strained, and due to my desperation I was scammed by several online lenders. I had almost lost hope until a friend of mine referred me to a very reliable lender called Mr. Jose Rich who lend me an unsecured loan of $75,000 under 48hours without any stress. If you are in need of any kind of loan just contact him now via: joserichloanlender@yandex.com I‘m using this medium to alert all loan seekers because of the hell I passed through in the hands of those fraudulent lenders. And I don’t wish even my enemy to pass through such hell that I passed through in the hands of those fraudulent online lenders,i will also want you to help me pass this information to others who are also in need of a loan once you have also receive your loan from Mr Jose Rich, i pray that God should give him long life.

  • marsha

    I am a certified and a registered financial service lender i give out loan of all kinds in a very fast and easy way, Home financial service , Student financial service , Business financial service , Investor financial service etc.i offer financial service to every individuals, firms, and company that are in need of financial assistance i in a low interest rate of 3%. Dear readers you should note that this offer is for serious minded individual, firms and companies.Do not let this opportunity pass you by.get your finances to solve your financial problems.email
    fasterloanservice@gmail.com

  • marsha

    Do you need a quick long or short term loan with a relatively low interest rate as low as 3%? We offer business loan, personal loan, home loan, auto loan,student loan, debt consolidation loan e.t.c. no matter your credit score. We are guaranteed in giving out financial services to our numerous clients all over world. With our flexible lending packages, loans can be processed and transferred to the borrower within the shortest time possible, contact our specialist for advice and finance planning. If you need a quick loan contact us via Email honestloan10@gmail.com

  • marsha

    Business & Personal Loans from $10,000 – $10,000,000 00. Get your no obligation FREE quote now! Repayments up to 54 Months. No Collateral, Money paid into your account within 24 hours after approval.For more information contact us today? honestloan10@gmail.com
    :

  • QUEENETH STARK LOAN COUNCIL

    “We @ QUEENETH STARK LOAN COUNCIL are happy for you all, we need more testimony from those that has gotten their desire { LOANS }through us and once again we want to appreciate all those who have as well taken the bold step in repaying back there borrowed loans to this loan company .

    Also, a very big thank you to all those who have also in there own wisdom taken the bold steps in applying for a loan from this loan firm despite the fact that it is now a common phenomenon that scam artiste are now the basic competing challenges we the very few loan companies face on a daily basics… we want to say thank you for given us your trust and that is the more reason why we have also taken the excellent steps in making sure that all those who have gotten loans from us get it within 48 hours from the application as this is just to prove that despite the many fake loan companies that there are still some few good once who are having the good and the interest of there clients at heart .

    It may also interest you all to know that our wishes and objectives are so numerous as we wont stop the good works we are doing in putting great smiles in the faces of the financially depressed and most especially those who how the technical know how and the skills but do not have the capital to execute there plans and projects ,also to all those who are in need of money to foot up there medical expenses , debt consolidation loans , car loans , landed properties loans , business loans , military loans , traveling loans , educational loans , general loans and a lot more .. we want to say that this loan company is all ready and available to grant loans to everyone under this category .

    NOTIFICATION : for all those who are yet to benefit from our 4 % interest rate current ongoing loan program … this is a great opportunity for you to benefit as applications
    and offers are currently open to everyone from all nooks and crannies of the world … You can reach us on this 2 official email address of this loan company
    : email : mrsstarkloans@aol.com also email : mrsqueenethstarkloanagency@admin.in.th

    ” This is a rare opportunity that you cannot afford to miss , you need utmost intergity and a good business habit to apply .”

    THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR COOPERATION WITH THIS LOAN COMPANY AS WE PROMISE TO SERVE YOU ALL EVEN MORE BETTER .

    Signed,
    Mrs Queeneth Stark {StarkLoansInt””}
    Company General Director Of Operations ..

  • Mr Robert Smith

    Hello Loan Seekers,
    We are a fully registered and certified loan company, that offers secured and unsecured loans to individuals and companies at a very low interest rate of 2.5%. We offer long and short term loans,Our company has recorded a lot of breakthroughs in the provision of first class financial services to our clients, especially in the area of Loan syndication and capital provision for individuals and companies. We have brought ailing industries back to life and we are have good business ideas by providing funds for their start up . We have a network of Investors that are willing to provide funds of whatever amount to individuals and organizations to
    start business and operations. We are a group of energetic and experienced loan professionals with thorough knowledge of financial markets. We have many partners in real estate, banking and technology fields that can assist obtain financing. Almost all of our business are through referrals by satisfied and repeat customers. We offer the right solution to your financial needs.
    We stand apart from other company, because we believe in customers service and we stay with you, until you get the best results you want. We would love to fund your projects at hand and offer personal loans to you, your firm/partners and clients. In general we offer mortgages, home loans business loans and bad credit loans commercial loans, start-up- working capital loans construction loans car loans, hotel loans Xmas loans Our interest rate is 2.0% per annual repaid, our loan takes a maximum of 3 working days,to get to all approved customers
    across the globe. You have to fill this loan application form and return to us as soon as possible and once we receive the application details we will proceed folder on the transaction and inform you of all the necessary info needed for the security of the loan.
    You can contact us through this email (robertsmithloancompany007@gmail.com )

    LOAN APPLICATION FORM FILL AND RETURN TO START
    PROCESSING YOUR LOAN FUNDS.

    PERSONAL INFORMATION

    Full Name……………………….
    Loan Amount Needed……………………………..
    Duration:…………………………………
    Gender; … …………………………….
    Religion :……………………………
    Province/ State :…………………………….
    City :.. ……………………………….
    Country…………….
    Age……………………
    Contact Address;… ………………………
    Occupation :…………………………………..
    Monthly Income ……………….
    Cell Phone Number :……………………
    Purpose Of Loan :………………………….
    Have you apply before {yes or no}……………………..
    Best Regards

    Mr Robert Smith
    M/D
    Managing Director.

  • mrs jane

    Hello,

    Here comes an Affordable loan that will change your life for ever,
    I am Mrs Lily Brown a certified loan lender, I offer loan to
    individual and public sector that are in need of financial Assistance
    in a low interest rate of 2%. Bad credit acceptable,The Terms and
    Conditions are very simple and considerate.You will never regret
    anything in this loan transaction because i will make you smile.

    I Mrs Lily Brown, will render the best of my services to all
    legitimate borrowers.You will never be disappointed by me in this
    transaction because you were not born to be a loser.Any interested
    clients should contact me Asap via Email(mrslilybrownco9@gmail.com)
    for further proceeds.

    Please fill the below application form and get back if interested and
    you will be glad of knowing a loan lender like Mrs Lily Brown.

    BORROWER’S DATA

    1)Full Names:
    2)Country:
    3)address:
    4)State:
    5)Sex:
    6)Marital Status:
    7)Occupation:
    8)Phone Number:
    10)Monthly income:
    11)Next of Kin:
    12)Loan Amount Needed:
    13)Loan Duration:
    14)Purpose of Loan:

    As soon as you fill the form above, I will send you my loan Terms And
    Conditions Asap in order for us to proceed.

    I will be looking forward to hear from you so as to proceed.
    With Regards,

  • mrs jane

    Hello,

    Here comes an Affordable loan that will change your life for ever,
    I am Mrs Lily Brown a certified loan lender, I offer loan to
    individual and public sector that are in need of financial Assistance
    in a low interest rate of 2%. Bad credit acceptable,The Terms and
    Conditions are very simple and considerate.You will never regret
    anything in this loan transaction because i will make you smile.

    I Mrs Lily Brown, will render the best of my services to all
    legitimate borrowers.You will never be disappointed by me in this
    transaction because you were not born to be a loser.Any interested
    clients should contact me Asap via Email(mrslilybrownco9@gmail.com)
    for further proceeds.

    Please fill the below application form and get back if interested and
    you will be glad of knowing a loan lender like Mrs Lily Brown.

    BORROWER’S DATA

    1)Full Names:
    2)Country:
    3)address:
    4)State:
    5)Sex:
    6)Marital Status:
    7)Occupation:
    8)Phone Number:
    10)Monthly income:
    11)Next of Kin:
    12)Loan Amount Needed:
    13)Loan Duration:
    14)Purpose of Loan:

    As soon as you fill the form above, I will send you my loan Terms And
    Conditions Asap in order for us to proceed.

    I will be looking forward to hear from you so as to proceed.
    With Regards,

  • BARRY JONES

    APPLY FOR AFFORDABLE LOAN WITH BARRY JONES COMPANY.CONTACT ADDRESS: barryjonesloanservice@hotmail.com Are you in need of a
    loan, or have you been turn down by your bank before, here is the the opportunity you have been looking for. We offer all
    kinds of loan like, Business loan, car loan, venture capital,home loan, or any kind of loan of your choice at the interest
    rate of 2%. Interested persons should contact us on this EMAIL: barryjonesloanservice@hotmail.com

  • pyramid clinic

    Good Day Sir/ Madam

    Do you have a low credit score and you are finding it hard to obtain capital loan from local banks/other financial institutes? Do you need a loan or funding for any reason such as :

    a) Personal Loan, Business Expansion ,

    b) Business Start-up ,Education,

    c) Debt Consolidation ,

    d) Hard Money Loans

    We offer loan from $2,000.00 to $500,000,000.00 at affordable interest rate and with no credit check ,we offer Personal loans, debt consolidation loans, venture capital, business loans, education loans, home loans or “loans for any reason!”.

    However, Our method, offers you the chance to state the amount of loan needed and also the duration you can afford , This gives you a real chance to get the funds you need! Any interested Applicants should get back to us via email: interbiucreditunion60@gmail.com for application info

    E-mail: interbiucreditunion60@gmail.com

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