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(NPR)   Going to college may be expensive, but it's not as expensive as skipping it wholesale   (npr.org) divider line 193
    More: Ironic, income disparity, wholesales, American middle class, blue-collar workers  
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7397 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Feb 2014 at 11:59 AM (23 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-02-12 12:02:22 PM
The world needs ditch diggers too
 
2014-02-12 12:03:08 PM
Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.
 
2014-02-12 12:03:21 PM
I feel that bailout money would have been better spent on student loan forgiveness.
 
2014-02-12 12:04:55 PM
What if you add in the therapy bills?

For decades, students at Bob Jones University who sought counseling for sexual abuse were told not to report it because turning in an abuser from a fundamentalist Christian community would damage Jesus Christ. Administrators called victims liars and sinners.

Then again if you go to Blow Job U you're screwed before you get there.
 
2014-02-12 12:05:29 PM
Oh man, did anyone else not get their automatic $17,500 college check last year?  I got it the other years and I'm really worried it got lost in the mail.
 
2014-02-12 12:07:45 PM

Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.


That about what you can get with a SNAP card.

So that works. If you make the assumption that you can't get a job without a degree.
 
2014-02-12 12:10:31 PM

beal99: The world needs ditch diggers too


Then you'd better pay them enough to live on.
 
2014-02-12 12:11:03 PM

The Stealth Hippopotamus: Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.

That about what you can get with a SNAP card.

So that works. If you make the assumption that you can't get a job without a degree.


I can barely get a job with nearly 3 degrees.
 
2014-02-12 12:11:09 PM
Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Um no. I never went to college and make more money  than everyone I know that did except my wife.
 
2014-02-12 12:13:27 PM

generallyso: beal99: The world needs ditch diggers too

Then you'd better pay them enough to live on.


This.

/the burger flippers, too
 
2014-02-12 12:14:01 PM
W/E, college degrees of today are the HS diplomas of the 60s... you'll never be wealthy, you aren't even going to be upper middle class, so you might as well figure out how to be happy while poor.
 
2014-02-12 12:14:30 PM

The Stealth Hippopotamus: Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.

That about what you can get with a SNAP card.

So that works. If you make the assumption that you can't get a job without a degree.


Here you get about $180 a month on SNAP, after the recent cuts, for a single person. With verification paperwork required every 3 months.
 
2014-02-12 12:16:07 PM

Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.


That's a good point.  People who graduate into fields that pay a whole lot of money, may be throwing off the numbers for people who graduate with a simple English degree.  I bet there are a lot of smart intelligent people who would have been better served spending a couple years learning to be a master mechanic or a wielder, then getting a Bachelors of Psychology.
 
2014-02-12 12:16:23 PM
I make pretty good money considering I have no degree.  I don't even have an associates.  But I do have college level work experience in a number of areas.

However...  The big drawback is that, there aren't many opportunities to move up any higher than I am, unless I go for a degree.  Which will have to be done online, and likely take years.  And be very expensive.  And doesn't guarantee any sort of advancement.

Meanwhile, my wife has a BA in Chemistry, and she works as a receptionist.  There just isn't much work out there for her degree.

However, given some time in her current position, she can certainly use that to get a better job more to her expertise.

Now, my point in saying all this is that many people will tell you the degree is worthless.  I look at it this way...  It might be.  But it still affords you opportunities you likely wouldn't get without it.  So it's worth the effort.  So I will still make sure my kids go to college.  Better to be prepared than not.
 
2014-02-12 12:16:38 PM

Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.


abhorrent1: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Um no. I never went to college and make more money  than everyone I know that did except my wife.


You two need to go to watch the Khan Academy video where they talk about how "average" works in mathematics.

I'm the only one in my extended family who went to college, and I earn about as much as the next five top earners. I was in and out in 4 years.
 
2014-02-12 12:16:40 PM
Actually I think it is every 6 months, but with the delays, you end up cut off for a month or so while they verify.
 
2014-02-12 12:16:54 PM

abhorrent1: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Um no. I never went to college and make more money  than everyone I know that did except my wife.


I suppose you'd have to have gone to college to understand how averages work...
 
2014-02-12 12:16:59 PM
Yep. Gotta keep cranking out the "college is necessary" propaganda, as we can't have the sheep realizing that they'll be just fine if they don't contribute to the student-debt bubble by taking on massive amounts of debt.
 
msP
2014-02-12 12:17:08 PM
"But Pew also finds that it's not just going to college that matters - it's what you study while you're there."

I'm shocked, SHOCKED I TELL YOU, that studying a bullshiat major (and not seeking adequate internship and relevant job opportunities while still in school) doesn't guarantee you a job.

I'm a communications major who got offered a job before I even graduated and make more than most of my peers in our first year out of college and my roommate was an English major who was offered a job at the area's biggest magazine (she chose to go to grad school instead, though). Two of the biggest BS majors and we both got jobs because we realized that a degree alone would not cut it. We also both chose to go in state and get super low tuition instead of going to top rated, out-of-state schools.

I have no sympathy for idiots who rack up student debt they don't need for majors they can't use.

/rant
 
2014-02-12 12:18:45 PM

abhorrent1: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Um no. I never went to college and make more money  than everyone I know that did except my wife.


Wait. You mean if I'd gone to college, my $83,000 last year could have been $100,500???

Dammit!
// Median income here is $36,000.
 
2014-02-12 12:20:39 PM
If you go through high school as college prep and dont go to college, yeah, you are farked.
If you go to a trade school you are likely not bad off at all.
 
2014-02-12 12:20:40 PM

abhorrent1: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Um no. I never went to college and make more money  than everyone I know that did except my wife.


i2.cdn.turner.com

You outlier!
 
2014-02-12 12:23:35 PM
Simple facts:

1) Education, by itself, is a good thing even if you don't "use" it for your job.
2) If your education isn't leading you down a career path, it would be VERY wise to obtain that education as inexpensively as possible (going to an expensive private university is a bad idea compared to other avenues).
3) Even having a degree that would lead down a career path isn't a guarantee you'll get a good paying job in that field.
4) You can have a very prosperous life even if you don't go to college but pursue other opportunities (such as vocational education).
5) Shiat still happens.

I think that pretty much covers it.
 
2014-02-12 12:24:19 PM
One son is a mechanic working on diesel locomotives. The attorney son, after expenses, overhead and related costs of running a law firm, makes half as much after tax as our mechanic son. Neither holds a candle to our daughter who is in business with me in cattle commodities. Guess which one has a butt-load of college bills still being paid down ..
 
2014-02-12 12:25:07 PM
My daughter just started college this year. We enrolled in the Texas Tomorrow Fund when it first came out in 1995. We had heard rumors about tuition rates being deregulated, so we jumped on it.
Tuition was deregulated around 2003, and most rates have gone up around 55%.
She is locked in at 1995 tuition rates.
Yay me.
 
2014-02-12 12:26:06 PM

Bondith: I can barely get a job with nearly 3 degrees.


Well the degree in Underwater Basket Weaving and Country Music Appreciation don't count.

Just funning with ya.

kidsizedcoffin: Here you get about $180 a month on SNAP, after the recent cuts, for a single person. With verification paperwork required every 3 months.


Where the hell is that? You get more than that in rural Oklahoma!

And if you get a descent case worker and you circumstances don't change you can just copy the last quarter's paperwork.
 
2014-02-12 12:26:30 PM
No, these days absolutely no. Don't waste your money. Go ahead and take a trade of some sort. Something useful and practical, but don't go to university. It's a waste of money. The odds of you getting a job in the field you'll study is extremely low (for a lot of you). In the meantime, the years will pass, you'll have to pay back that student loan with a huge amount of interest attached to it and you won't get ahead. You'll never own a home, and you'll spend most of your adult life in debt. And employers will treat you like sh*t, because there's just so many educated nobodies right now.

Go get a trade. Go invest in something useful, but stay away from university.

I wished someone had given me this advice back in the late 80's.
 
2014-02-12 12:27:35 PM

gretzkyscores: Yep. Gotta keep cranking out the "college is necessary" propaganda, as we can't have the sheep realizing that they'll be just fine if they don't contribute to the student-debt bubble by taking on massive amounts of debt.


===============

"Billions and billions....", like the late Carl Sagan used to say, spent on higher ed in this country every year.  It's one of the biggest industries in the US.  Just one example: Have you seen the cost of college texts lately?
 
2014-02-12 12:28:57 PM

Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.


Well they weren't talking about women's studies degrees.
 
2014-02-12 12:29:07 PM

waterrockets: Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.

abhorrent1: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Um no. I never went to college and make more money  than everyone I know that did except my wife.

You two need to go to watch the Khan Academy video where they talk about how "average" works in mathematics.


But my anecdata is totally relevant and not at all due to the unique realities of my field, and this honestly isn't just a chance for me to whine anonymously to a group of uncaring strangers.
 
2014-02-12 12:29:22 PM
Fark education thread checklist

1. Everyone should be an engineer or work in IT, regardless of aptitude, ability, or passion.

2. STEM fields are (choose just one):
- Awesome and perfect
- Male dominated and threatened by girls.

3. Public schools are failing ONLY because (choose just one):
- Teachers
- Conservatives
- Administrators
- Liberals
- Obama
- PTA's
- School boards
- Parents (Except me, I'm a great parent. I don't know what your problem is.)

4. Liberal arts? Have fun working as a barista forever, idiot.

5. An actual, rational statement.
 
2014-02-12 12:30:19 PM

Fissile: gretzkyscores: Yep. Gotta keep cranking out the "college is necessary" propaganda, as we can't have the sheep realizing that they'll be just fine if they don't contribute to the student-debt bubble by taking on massive amounts of debt.

===============

"Billions and billions....", like the late Carl Sagan used to say, spent on higher ed in this country every year.  It's one of the biggest industries in the US.  Just one example: Have you seen the cost of college texts lately?


Most of my college texts were required because they were written by the professor teaching the course and they said they needed the money.
 
2014-02-12 12:31:14 PM
The value of a degree to a marginal college student - if they actually graduate - is probably quite a bit less than that.
 
2014-02-12 12:31:21 PM
A bit off subject but what do you think would happen if instead of raising minimum wages we made college affordable to the poor?  Then the no-talent minimum wage workers won't be competing for decent jobs with Real Americans
 
2014-02-12 12:31:25 PM

durbnpoisn: I make pretty good money considering I have no degree.  I don't even have an associates.  But I do have college level work experience in a number of areas.

However...  The big drawback is that, there aren't many opportunities to move up any higher than I am, unless I go for a degree.  Which will have to be done online, and likely take years.  And be very expensive.  And doesn't guarantee any sort of advancement.

Meanwhile, my wife has a BA in Chemistry, and she works as a receptionist.  There just isn't much work out there for her degree.

However, given some time in her current position, she can certainly use that to get a better job more to her expertise.

Now, my point in saying all this is that many people will tell you the degree is worthless.  I look at it this way...  It might be.  But it still affords you opportunities you likely wouldn't get without it.  So it's worth the effort.  So I will still make sure my kids go to college.  Better to be prepared than not.


Similar story here (replace wife with ex-wife).  No degree, some college, six figures, got very lucky, future is always a concern without a degree.

The stress of going, "Man, how'd I end up here.  I wonder if they're going to realize I'm not one of them.  What happens if I make a mistake!  What will I do next?" is just not the best way to live.

I had absolutely no support structure and the mindset of everyone around was, "We're poor white trash, that's all we'll ever be, stop trying to get out of the trailer park."  I don't like people telling me what I can and can't do so I made more of myself.  I expect my kids to make even more of themselves and in a couple of generations, we'll have the next head of Google (or whatever is Google then) because some guy didn't want to remain white trash.
 
2014-02-12 12:32:49 PM
What is a philosophy majors favorite question?


WHY do you want fries with that?
 
2014-02-12 12:33:17 PM

Fissile: gretzkyscores: Yep. Gotta keep cranking out the "college is necessary" propaganda, as we can't have the sheep realizing that they'll be just fine if they don't contribute to the student-debt bubble by taking on massive amounts of debt.

===============

"Billions and billions....", like the late Carl Sagan used to say, spent on higher ed in this country every year.  It's one of the biggest industries in the US.  Just one example: Have you seen the cost of college texts lately?


I find it amusing that the government gets all hot and bothered about medical care costs (and rightly so), but higher education costs go completely ignored. PUBLIC university costs are pushing six figures (tuition, books, room, board) for a four year program and they keep going up. Everybody knows that certain parts of it are nothing but a racket (textbooks) and with the job market being horrible this student loan debt problem just isn't sustainable. The answer has to be more than "just forgive the loans" since that ultimately solves nothing. It's a very good question about why things are costing what they do, and there's not too many places asking it.
 
2014-02-12 12:34:29 PM
Six figures? Shhhhhhhhhhh*t, man, my salary has 7 figures.

Pay no mind to that decimal point.
 
2014-02-12 12:34:44 PM
Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given the current economic situation, I guess this means that the average salary of a person with a college degree is about $17,500.
 
2014-02-12 12:36:01 PM

indarwinsshadow: No, these days absolutely no. Don't waste your money. Go ahead and take a trade of some sort. Something useful and practical, but don't go to university. It's a waste of money. The odds of you getting a job in the field you'll study is extremely low (for a lot of you). In the meantime, the years will pass, you'll have to pay back that student loan with a huge amount of interest attached to it and you won't get ahead. You'll never own a home, and you'll spend most of your adult life in debt. And employers will treat you like sh*t, because there's just so many educated nobodies right now.

Go get a trade. Go invest in something useful, but stay away from university.

I wished someone had given me this advice back in the late 80's.


img542.imageshack.us
 
2014-02-12 12:36:11 PM

generallyso: beal99: The world needs ditch diggers too

Then you'd better pay them enough to live on.


According to this link, the average salary of a ditch digger is a princely $24K.  Of course, that's the average, so there's probably some kind of pecking order in Ditch Digger's Local #976, where new hires start out lower, and the Senior Ditch Digging Executives hover up in the dizzying heights of the $40K range.

And yes, I felt stupid for googling 'average salary of a ditch digger' although if HR looks at my web access logs here at work, I may get one of those special meetings soon.
 
2014-02-12 12:40:04 PM
Why would I go to college when I have all this free knowledge at Fark.com at my fingertips? I'm sure that one of those 5 guys in everyone of these threads who is making 6 figures without a degree will give me a job! After all multiplying anecdotes = scientific proof!

/for the love of god, take stock in your situation and do what is right for you...
 
2014-02-12 12:40:25 PM
I really don't know the answer to this, not being snarky. So many go out of the country for large medical expenses. Does anyone go out of the country for entire degrees? And if so, is it cheaper?

Personally I moved to Estonia for a year after high school, learned 2 languages, found a job working for a cool company and get a ton of cred in interviews with that. In the states, I got nothing more than a few years in a tech school at a local public run school. Now with all that I learned there and overseas make double local average salary and am in a job I like.
 
2014-02-12 12:40:36 PM
There have been enough studies on the value of a college education to notice something missing here. If you're going to ask if it's worth it, shouldn't it be compared to the cost? I'm being absurd here, but if a college education adds $17.5K to your income, but you're paying $20K/year in student loans, I'd say it isn't worth it.

I know there are a slew of other costs that you don't incur by entering the workforce at 18, so I can't see how you skip that input unless your pushing a bullshiat agenda. I say that as a CS major who has definitely benefited from my degree, but I think this Pew study...wait for it...stinks!
 
m00
2014-02-12 12:40:43 PM

Bondith: The Stealth Hippopotamus: Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without

Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.

That about what you can get with a SNAP card.

So that works. If you make the assumption that you can't get a job without a degree.

I can barely get a job with nearly 3 degrees.


What degrees?
 
2014-02-12 12:40:59 PM

The Stealth Hippopotamus: indarwinsshadow: No, these days absolutely no. Don't waste your money. Go ahead and take a trade of some sort. Something useful and practical, but don't go to university. It's a waste of money. The odds of you getting a job in the field you'll study is extremely low (for a lot of you). In the meantime, the years will pass, you'll have to pay back that student loan with a huge amount of interest attached to it and you won't get ahead. You'll never own a home, and you'll spend most of your adult life in debt. And employers will treat you like sh*t, because there's just so many educated nobodies right now.

Go get a trade. Go invest in something useful, but stay away from university.

I wished someone had given me this advice back in the late 80's.

[img542.imageshack.us image 533x400]


Actually, 20 years of my wasted life in IT...now a police officer. If I never see another
set of binaries as long as I live, I'll die a happy man.
 
2014-02-12 12:42:00 PM
Bondith: The Stealth Hippopotamus: Bondith: Those with a college degree now make $17,500 more per year than those without
Given my earnings over the past year, that means some poor schmoe is struggling to live on $6500, or $541 a month.
That about what you can get with a SNAP card.
So that works. If you make the assumption that you can't get a job without a degree.
I can barely get a job with nearly 3 degrees.

amazingly, i can't find a person to hire who doesn't demand an arm and a leg.  at some point i got fatigued by state-U B-average business degree snowflakes who demanded $80k+ for what they apparently understood to be mostly sitting on facebook and went overseas to "socialist" europe and haven't looked back.
 
2014-02-12 12:42:15 PM
I make $75k a year without a degree. My wife, who has a 4 year degree, makes $80k with $35k is student debt. That's just debt, not how much we spent in total.

The only people I know who make significantly more than me with degrees are engineers. I also know a lot of people with degrees who don't make near what I do. In fact, the people who work for me have at least 2 year degrees.

The people I know who make the most don't have degrees. They're day traders and sales people. The 2 billionaires I know didn't use degrees to get their money. One has a degree, but inherited the company worth billions. The other doesn't have a degree and made his money in sales.

I'd say it's a wash. The only way I recommend a degree is if there's something you know you want to do and a degree is necessary to facilitate it or if it's something you want to learn about and don't care if you make money back on it. Getting a degree just to get a degree is a very risky investment.
 
2014-02-12 12:43:07 PM
It's a scam. Hopefully colleges will start to disappear soon, replaced by online or on-the-job training for specific jobs.

It will be a good thing. Too many worthless people with degrees screwing things up.

Funny thing about real life jobs, there is almost never a written test on silly crap no one ever uses.
 
2014-02-12 12:44:01 PM

duffblue: I feel that bailout money would have been better spent on student loan forgiveness.


That's because you hang out with people with student loan debt and not auto workers.  The auto industry collapsing would have caused a lot of problems for a lot of people and would have made unemployment much worse than it was.  Not to mention that the cost of the auto bailout was much lower than what student loan forgiveness would cost.
 
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