College loans, how much did it put you in the hole?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by SamIchi, May 31, 2008.

  1. SamIchi macrumors 68030


    Aug 1, 2004
    I've been to community college for 5 years now, everything was paid for by state, and I even got money in return. Finally moving on, I'm going to an out of state private college. After some rough calculations, I'll be taking out loans for approximately 20k a year for 4 years... Am I screwed? With tuition and fees, my scholarships and grants cover half. I'm going to be going to Cleveland Institute of Art in the fall for Industrial Design. I've been spoiled, never took my finances seriously, this is a whole lot of money.

    So let's hear your story, what you got out of it, was it worth it? Are you still in debt. Which college, what major? Tips for others?
  2. Jschultz macrumors 6502a


    Mar 14, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    I'm in my senior year of college this fall, and I'm 50K in the hole. Luckily my fiance was paid for in full by her parents, so we'll only have to pay back one student loan. With our expected income, Sallie Mae calculator estimates $550/mo for 10 years :(:(
  3. r1ch4rd macrumors 6502a


    Aug 5, 2005
    Manchester UK
    I was £11,000 in debt after finishing University. I've paid off around £1,200 over the last year though.
  4. 0098386 Suspended


    Jan 18, 2005
    About £7k. Not bad really, I lived at home and my folks are going to pay half of it off.

    My Caroline hasn't got it as good though. Think she's £9k but at least she missed out on top up fee's. My friend won't say exactly why (I think it's top up fees) but he's already £7k in debt and only been at uni for 1 year. And has a job to help him! Unlike my time at uni.
  5. blackfox macrumors 65816


    Feb 18, 2003
    Personally, I am only about $3K in the hole - and that is with several degrees behind me. I was lucky in that my family paid for my BS, and partially assisted with the rest. At the end, I was initially let with about $7K.

    A couple of years ago, my parents became somewhat ill, which forced me to move home to keep an eye on them - during this time (in which I had a decent job) - I aggressively paid down my debt for 7 months or so. Now I pay just $150/mo on the remainder.

    As an aside, there was a sobering article in the local weekly here (Portland) about the crippling costs of student loans on today's young people. There were several profiles of recent and semi-recent graduates who had a variety of jobs - all fairly decent - and the average projected repayment date was around 2025-2030.

    Hard to get ahead with that over you until you are into your 40's and 50's.
  6. Gray-Wolf macrumors 68030


    Apr 19, 2008
    Pandora, Home Tree
    Only did 2 quarters back in the fall of 78. I got bored sitting in class. Bad mistake. I was current with tuition at that time, since it was coming out of my pocket. ;)
  7. italiano40 macrumors 65816


    Oct 7, 2007
  8. thechidz macrumors 68000


    Jul 25, 2007
    New York City
    I am hoping that Obama can somehow make this at least a little better
  9. CalBoy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2007
    Fortunately it seems that I'll be graduating with a BA with no debt.

    3 years of law school, however, have me positioned to graduate with anywhere from $80k-$150k in debt. It all depends on scholarships, grants, etc.

    Thankfully the starting salary for corporate attorneys (not my career aspiration, but it does pay the bills) is around $100k-$140k depending on the firm and hours, etc. With that salary I should be free and clear of my debt relatively quickly. I hope. :eek:
  10. creator2456 macrumors 68000


    Jul 10, 2007
    Going into my junior year of undergrad and sitting just over $25000. Looking to be no more than $40000 by the end of undergrad and still undecided about grad school.

    I am just glad I'm not my older sister. She's looking at somewhere in the range of $200000 - $250000 in debt. Undergrad out of state + Grad + Doctor = big $$$ pit. Good thing she's got it under control and has a job lined up as well as her husband co-owning a custom fence/decking company that does very well.
  11. shecky Guest


    May 24, 2003
    Obviously you're not a golfer.
    paid for it all myself, a little more than $100,000 in loans for my BFA, the rest covered by scholarship, grants and awards.

    was it worth it? more than you can imagine. i would have gladly paid 10 times that for what my education gave me.
  12. Eidorian macrumors Penryn


    Mar 23, 2005
  13. pooky macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2003
    Paid for B.S. myself, graduated in 2001, still owe about $17,000 (started at about $20k).

    Should have made it through grad school without loans, but some unforeseeable circumstances forced me to borrow about $12,000 (I married someone who was not financially solvent).

    Worth it? For college, absolutely. For the wife? Hell no. She's gone (and good riddance), still benefiting from the education. The moral of the story: borrow for education if you must, but never never borrow for a girl.
  14. 63dot macrumors 603


    Jun 12, 2006
    associate's - no debt
    bachelor's - no debt

    grad school, first attempt - about 10k but well on the way to 30k in my mid-30s, so i quit

    grad school, second attempt - a lesser well known school, but full employer scholarship, which works well for me mid/late career at age "forty-something"

    basically, for me, in a very small town with limited choices, the only way i would have borrowed thirty or forty grand for a grad degree would be if i did it very young, in my mid-20s, and took a few decades to pay it off, while trying to live, buy food and gas, and have somewhat of a life in a high rent/mortgate, low pay resort town

    in a big city, with higher pay, i could maybe see myself going tens of grand into debt for grad school well into my 30s, but at a certain age, it becomes pointless outside of personal satisfaction, which could balance out the reality of breaking even with lost time and money for too much education for the market or for the job

    one bartender i know loves his job, and doesn't mind that he spent 10 years in college and got his bachelor's degree and three separate master's degrees in very different fields, and is in huge debt over it all ... but many patrons love him for his renaissance man wisdom and that what gives him kicks

    i guess to each his own ... some people buy too many macs or too many motorcycles they never get around to riding
  15. Hummer macrumors 65816


    Feb 3, 2006
    Queens, New York NY-5
    I'm going to be 120k in the hole because I have no cosigner and I have no credit.
  16. byocrysis macrumors regular


    Nov 10, 2007
    San Luis Obispo, CA
    B.S. in Microbiology: $0 Thanks Mom and Dad :)
    D.C. Doctorate of Chiropractic: $160,000 Ouch :(
  17. jamesi macrumors 6502a


    Sep 13, 2005
    Davis CA
    lets see, ive been waiting for this thread for the longest time.
    Im an out of state student going to UC Davis (california for those folks not living in the US). and after two years i owe about $110 k. i took this year off to go to community college to try and get residency, all to no avail. i will reserve my opinions of the UC board for another time b/c i cannot think of another topic which makes me more upset. basically, its impossible to get residency as an undergrad without getting married. my parents can not afford to help me, and thats really alright i just cant believe how the UC heralds itself on its so called "diversity" when they only want california residents.

    but i should be happy, after all, b/c its very difficult to get into a UC out of state (talking about uc daivs, berk, ucla, and uc sd) and i was able to at least do that. i will be returning to davis next year pending on a decision from a transfer app i sent to a private school in san diego. however, it appears that most likely i shall remain at davis, swallow the extra tuition, and do the best i can paying it back at another time. its just the way it goes, after all, some kids still think they cant afford college. i wish i could tell them that all they need to do is go into massive debt and default until you can afford monthly payments ahahahah

    dont worry about it, if you are taking loans to pay for your education. i will owe 200k just for my undergrad and then i have business school which should be the same amount again. you are going to be fine, maybe you will freak out about it once and a while but all in all, you will be able to pay it back and still having a nice life at the same time.
  18. itcheroni macrumors 6502a

    Sep 23, 2005
    I spent the last two years in law school and it put me $100k in debt. Most of it are private loans, accruing interest daily! If you don't get into a top 15 school, you shouldn't rely on getting that corporate gig. A lot of my friends, some of whom graduated in 07, are still trying to get jobs. The field is very impacted right now and I personally don't think it's worth it, which is why I'm not finishing my law degree even with 100k of debt. But it's all dependent on personality, so maybe I shouldn't try and dissuade you too much.
  19. CalBoy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2007
    Don't I know it. ;):eek:
    I'm optimistic about my LSAT though, and my grades are pretty decent, plus my resume is shaping up nicely, so I *hope* I can make it into a top-20 school at the least.
    Well I have other reasons for wanting to go to law school as well, so for me it isn't just about employment (though it does play a part-don't get me wrong).

    I always welcome advice though, so feel free to be fast and loose with it. ;):p:)
  20. pooky macrumors 6502

    Jun 2, 2003
    Oh, you've got it all wrong.

    Of course the UC wants you nonresidents. They make huge money off of you. And tuition increases (tuition = out of state) get through without the protesting that happens with fee increases (= in state) because the population of students is much smaller. They can jack up the cost and you can't do anything about it. I'm sure they set it at whatever they think will bring in the most cash.
  21. CalBoy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2007
    No, the UCs still want native Californians over out-of-staters because they are subsidized by the California budget (given the recent decision to raise fees yet AGAIN casts doubt on the quality of budget management however).

    Students who come from outside the state don't have parents who pay the fairly high tax rate in California (California has yet to meet a tax it didn't like), so it's only fair that they contribute more for their education.

    Now, if we're talking about how the UC regents are sucking us all dry, that's a different matter entirely. The UC system has decided to prove itself once more as a corrupt and irresponsible group of politicians who desire nothing more than to advance their own goals.

    But then that's a topic for a different thread. :p
  22. Marble macrumors 6502a


    May 13, 2003
    Tucson, AZ
    In the end, my debt will probably be about $30K with a Masters. It'll be a specialized arts degree though, so who knows how easy it will be to beat.
  23. 63dot macrumors 603


    Jun 12, 2006
    it all depends what you want to do with the law field

    if you are public interest or you are in it for a public cause, like me, usually you won't need a top law school, and not even aba school if you want to practice in california

    if your aspirations are public, for a cause, and involve the nation's capital or sacto, then a mid tier aba school will get you there like a uc davis and though the pay won't be "lawyer" pay, you can get out of debt eventually

    if you want a nice corporate law gig in a private firm making 200k a year, then get that 170 or better on the lsat, and shoot for stanford, harvard, or yale as, unfortunately, they only hire their own regardless of skill...i have a friend who did harvard, then the california bar, got the silicon valley corporate gig and hated it...vowed to get out of law the second her loans were paid was like talking to someone who had done a 12 year jail sentence

    what law school books or mba school guide books don't tell you is that it is more than just the school and the quality of education, but an old boys network of private school grads in a country club vibe...look at our president and you get the picture

    anyway, congrats on a great lsat score...i bombed it thinking it should be easy when i would score in top 10 percent or even 1 percent on other standardized tests

    where you may have been tops in an undergrad course of study, expect stiff competition at any law school and get used to being lonely as it is not a collegiate scholarly thing where you make long lasting friends

    you will find law school has nothing to do with lsat, then go to any state bar exam and download a past exam, and you will see that it doesn't fit law school that neatly, and then talk to any working lawyer and you will see that is different

    at my age in my 40s, i don't know if i am that flexible or if i will end up like my lawyer friend but if you are young, go for the best school you can, don't worry about debt, and if you want to fulfill a cause, which it sounds like you want to, you can make the good money if it's your firm and lawyers work for you

    salary surveys are not all that accurate, but if you want the big money, unfortunately or fortunately, los angeles is known to pay well in more types of law, including some public gigs, even as a law student which can be helpful

    i prefer the small rural nor cal city, so i know i won't even make the same money as a lawyer that even a 1L clerk at some posh la law firm, but that's ok with me since nothing would cause me to move over there, except family if that ever became the case

    but talk to any lawyer that will give you advice, law student, and even as many ex-lawyers that you can find
  24. itcheroni macrumors 6502a

    Sep 23, 2005
    UC Davis is definitely not easy to get into. But, the main problem is that the tuition costs are so high across the board many are kept out and many are kept from what they really wanted to do with law. About half of all students think they'll do a non-profit/legal services gig, but the numbers show less than 5% do(I don't know where I got these numbers but they feel right). The main reason is because of debt.
  25. furious macrumors 65816


    Aug 7, 2006

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