As I was saying...
The price of an education is crazy! I mean, people go off to school to better their lives (or to be in a drunken stupor for 4 years) and when they leave school and are ready to face the world... they are drowning in debt. It just does not make sense to me.
I don't like debt-in fact, it makes me sick to my stomach. We live our financial lives the Dave Ramsey way (If you don't know who Dave is, than just Google him and you will be on the road to Financial Freedom!) Anyway, we don't like debt, we don't have debt (except for my student loans) and sometime soon we will be able to thumb our noses at Sallie Mae and pay off this mega monster.
I attended a small Catholic college that had a HUGE tuition. When I decided to go back and finish my degree I continued my education at the same college doing an "external" degree. That just means that I had no set schedule-it was flexible. I did not have to attend classes, just do the work on-line and get everything in by the end of semester date. Now, this is a brilliant plan for someone who is structured, but I am a procrastinator at heart. I will put off doing things until the very last moment. I only procrastinate when it comes to my own personal obligations. The obligations of my children and husband are always taken care of quickly and meticulously... my stuff gets shoved to the back of the line and sooner or later I freak out and remember that I need to turn in a 10 page report on the abnormal behavior of prison inmates who have lived among primates by tomorrow! I have even been known to start and finish an entire course in two-weeks. I would not recommend this-it is not very conducive to a happy stable home... basically it makes me a crazy woman for a couple of weeks and I retain nothing. Do not ask me anything on American History... all I know is that there were Native Americans, and now we all live here. Good enough-I got an "A"!
Actually, learning comes pretty easy to me. I can put it off, write a research paper in the span of 2 hours and come out of the course with an "A" or a "B". I am not bragging... I am just trying to make you feel inferior to my big brain and my savvy use of cliff notes. There were only two courses that I did not do well in. I received a "D" in both and I received those grades on principle alone so I have to say that I am very proud of those D's. One was in a course called "Woman Imaging God" I was very excited as I thought I was going to learn how to be more God-like (not in the "I am a GOD-worship ME sense, but more in the "I am a servant" sense). The instructor thought differently. It turned out to be a feminist view of God-referring to Him as "her" and "Goddess." Needless to say, the instructor soon thought of me as a thorn in her side and I am sure she even stopped reading my papers as they were along the lines of "What are you a crazy person to think such nonsense in a Catholic College?" I am sure she gave me my D just to get rid of me-and that was fine. The second "D" I received was from one of my psychology professors. He was an evolutionist and told me that humans are in fact the third chimpanzee. I made a remark about Michael Jackson and his Chimp and from then on I received low marks. I fought him on every discussion and challenged his teaching style. Again, I became a thorn in his side and I was glad to be done with that course! I even changed my double major of Human Services and Psychology to just a major in HS and a MINOR in psych so I would no longer have to be in contact with this professor.
Anyway, now I am finished, I is edjumacated! A person needs a college degree in order to deal with the banks in which they owe money to. One of my loans is from a small bank in Indiana. They no longer have a student loan department and do not know what the National Student Loan Database is. They reported my loan "paid in full" back in 2004-so when we consolidated in 2006, they did not get on the list. A few months ago we received a phone call from them saying "You owe us money! Pay up or have bad credit!" Well, after talking to the banker that was assigned my loan (who is a rickety old man who went to college back when women were not allowed to even think of higher education) it was apparent that I was in for a long penance with this bank.
Long story short-they have been paid, they have cashed the check... but they just called me last week and said they lost the check and therefore they feel they have not been paid! HUH? Crazypersonsayswhat? So it is back to the phone lines for me to Sallie Mae and back to the fax machine and back to the frustration of dealing with ignorant people (one of my pet peeves).
The moral of this long winded two day post? Save for your children's college! Give them a fighting chance in the world when they emerge from their 4 year stint of no responsibilities and endless toga parties! Let them get into debt with more fun things like overbuying shoes, or buying a Hummer on a 20K a year job! Those are the good mistakes to learn about debt from-not the monkey on your back that I call Sallie Mae. They will thank you one day as they drive up to your house in their BMW.