Without addressing average college debt from the student education loan, President Obama recently declared that America remains the country to beat. “We are home to the world’s best colleges and universities… where more students come to study than any other place on Earth.” I tend to believe the President on that statement.
Later in the speech he told us that “America has fallen to ninth in the proportion of young people with a college degree.”
I can’t help but wonder — is that necessarily such a bad thing?
Can I Get A Job To Pay My Student Education Loan?
What concerns most of us is jobs — jobs that enable a college graduate to enter the workplace at an income level where he or she can make ends meet and manage student loan repayment without parental financial support or more government subsidies.
According to the report by The Project On Student Debt, for graduating students the average college debt is $24,000. After adding in the interest, the payback can escalate to over $31,000.
These days it’s tough to find a job to cover basic overhead, and most young people don’t factor in the cost of their student education loans until reality sets in. College tuition and fees have risen four times that of the median income since 1982. Graduates are not getting jobs and cannot pay off their college debt.
Teach Student Loan Finance
At 18 years old, most have no idea what field or career will fulfill them. High schools should teach student loan finance first, before these young adults take on the crushing burden of college debt for dreams of a future they cannot foresee.
According to Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa, authors of the new book, “Academically Adrift,” 45% of students fail to show any improvement in critical thinking, complex reasoning, or written analysis after two years of college, dropping to 36% for seniors.
I believe it is not colleges that are failing 46 percent of the students, but rather, many of these failing students should not be there in the first place.
A senior college faculty member made the point that course expectations have declined for decades, leaving many college graduates unprepared for their future careers. Such emphasis is placed on college education in favor of the trades that inflated high school and college grades reward mediocre scholastic achievement.
Many young people who would have been more productive in a skilled trade that fulfills them are funneled through the higher academic system, but even top-tier doctors or lawyers may not be able to keep up the student loan repayment on their tab of $100,000 or more.
Student Education Loans — Follow The Money
Current statistic show there are over 11 million enrolled in colleges and universities. Approximately 2/3 graduate with college debt.
If average student loan principle is $24,000, students must pay back college debt of $31,000.00, including the 36% of seniors who maybe should not have been there in the first place. That is approximately 1,980,000 students who have shown no progress in thinking, reasoning, or analytical skills yet have taken out student loans totaling about $47.5 billion U.S. dollars, PLUS an additional $13,860,000,000 in interest.
You read it right — these students owe $13.8 billion in interest.
Who gets this $13.8 billion interest income? Who took over the student loan program? The federal government. The administration has a big incentive to get every young man, woman and their parents convinced they need to attend college and in debt themselves.
Reducing The Student Education Loan
Whether a young adult should attend college must be answered on a personal level. Here we seek the answer to lowering national average college debt.
One solution gaining in popularity is online classes. Usually some on-campus participation is required, while core lectures are provided by an instructor, online.
Returning students have been able to complete college educations through online degree programs. Younger students can reduce their housing and commuting expenses by taking classes at home on their computers, to avoid starting their career with a student education loan.