Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Trials and Tribulations of the Post-College Student

Students loans are possibly some of the most criminally insane concepted ways to "help" someone get an education. Perhaps this is one of the reasons the United States is so far behind every other country. The American greed infiltrates the educational system, turning Americans that would love to recieve an extended education away from the system.

For example, one of my best friends Rob, is English. He came to America to study for a bit. He's younger than me, by several years, yet he is currently on his way to a PhD. I'm struggling to pay off a Bacholers degree. Why is this? Well, in England, Rob pays essentially one third of what we pay here, even in our home state. They also have excellerated programs that allow students to get degrees a year or so before most Americans.

You might think that us in America are just getting more of an education, but the fact is, Englad cuts all the fat out of your student plan. I wouldn't have had to take Astronomy, Anthropology, or College Algebra to get an English degree. Some of those classes had interesting concepts, but essentially I was paying $1000 a class... that meant nothing to me.

So currently Sallie and I are paying hard for my student loans. Without giving an exact dollar amount, my student loans cost almost two hundred more than our rent.

Student loans give essentially whatever amount of money, broke, irresponsible college students want and their parents are willing to co-sign for.

The thing is, I didn't have much extra money after loans once rent and books were factored in. I also worked full time, so it wasn't like I had to survive off student loans. I took out exactly how much I thought I needed, and just made it by.

So tell me, why do I have (with interest) about $70,000+ in student loans? I went to school in my state. Went to community college for the first year. I've paid all of my payments on time. There's no reason we should be punished.

We are currently looking into consolidating. Mohela has given my loans to other companies and has been unable to proved me with any information on the subject. Anytime I ask questions, they copy and paste pages from their website as a response. How is that supposed to help me?

So, looking into consolidating, we've found no one will touch all of my loans with a ten foot, high interest, pole. Everyone will either touch my private loans or my federal loans. Not both.

So what are we supposed to do? Should I change my payment plan to the thirty year plan and gain another $40,000 in interest? Should I just default on my loans, ruin my credit for ten years and hope for the best? (BTW: Student Loan defaults are hovering around 7% right now. Seems like I'm not the only one having issues)

So, unless someone has a little less than $100,000 laying around that they are willing to donate to us, we are going to have to go into battle with the beuracracy that is Mohela and find out why our married neighbors that both have four years worth of student loans each, pay almost half of what we do.