Let’s face it – being burdened by student loan debt is like being on the indebtedness list for a long time.
You probably saw a list of who has to pay their fines and late dues back in high school. Should you not have done something about it, if you were on that list and taken care of the fees to get yourself off, you would have missed out. You would have not danced (appropriately) at prom. You would not have marched with your band as a danceline member. You would not even have graduated with a diploma!
College debt is like being on the list, but many struggle to get it off. Just like credit card debt, it’s one of the worst financial predicaments you have to face in life.
We were taught how to succeed in life – go to school, graduate school, go to college, and graduate college. Well, that’s just a pipe dream for many teens and even children who have dreams of being successful just like Mom and Dad. It’s not just the fact that tuition costs are, well, costly. It’s the borrowing of loans, especially private, that gets them quick after graduating.
Most of the victims of debt are art, engineering, and business majors. But majors that are economically hardy, like nursing, are increasingly burdened by it. They would struggle to pay off their debts by working in jobs that don’t require degrees, like waiting or busing tables, stocking shelves at retail stores, or washing laundry. Those occupations are low-paying, and they have to decide between food and debt payments to survive.
Some even would turn to prostitution to pay their indebtedness off! (Yikes!)
That kind of debt sticks with a lot of people for years. Most people in mid-to-late adulthood have to go back to square one (take more classes or switch majors back in college), just to rack up even more debt.
Numerous economic experts have a ton of strategies that can mitigate, even avoid debt. One good way is to save for it. Some people in low-income households would set aside a dollar for each day their kids live. It’s a good idea, but there’s more to that in preparing for the worst.
Scholarships are other things to lessen the debt load. But, they take luck and patience. Even if you have a 4.0 GPA and you write mind-blowing essays, there’s someone somewhere waiting to make you lose that chance. It’s rivalry in education. Plus, some of them may be scams.
Another thing that works for some people in reducing debt is borrowing federally first. They are flexible in interest rates, payment plans, and forgiveness. Sure, it’s a bit pricy, but it can help you.
Although those things can help you financially, few naysayers denounce it as a scam.
So, if you are bound for a college (or have somebody bound for it), there are a ton of good alternatives. You can ask to be an apprentice for jobs that you like, such as auto repairs or instrument making.
Of course, you can always be an entrepreneur, especially in network marketing. But it takes some risk, and good luck. Why? Some of the businesses can be dodgy in product, fees, and compensation plans. But there are a growing number of people who made great success with it.
One of my friends, a Filipino-descent college graduate from California, did this by encouragement from her mother, also a network marketer in the same company she worked. She was 18 at the time and did this even when a lot of “no’s” set her back. When she reached top paying position, she paid her tuition in full without getting into debt because she didn’t take out any loans! And the best part is that she retired her parents! Isn’t that amazing?
But, if you really, really want to go to college, start off saving for a community college. Even better – spend a gap year or two finding a job (if you can find one) to ease the burden of the debt you would face (or would have faced if you are a very frugal student). Oh, and apply for scholarships and grants, but choose the ones that are reputable and not worthy of scams or ripoffs.
If you are brave, spend a gap year or two finding a good network marketing business. And don’t forget to think about gradually getting wealthy – save money, spend wisely, and you’ll be set to tackle those loan payments!