Student Loans

‘Working Your Way Through College’ Now Basically a Myth

A few weeks ago when we talked about the guy with 13 kids, I mentioned how I liked the idea of my kids “working their way through college” like my parents did. Many of you were quick to point out that this was no longer feasible, that “working your way through college” now means ‘working your way through college and then also spending the next decade or more paying off your student loans.’ Which, come to think about, is exactly my experience.

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Simplifying Student Loan Payments

Karen Weise at Businessweek breaks down a proposal from a group of “student-aid advocacy and research organizations” whose aims are to simplify student loan repayment. The plan includes “auto-IBR,” or automatically enrolling all federal student loan borrowers in a repayment plan based on income, and then collecting payments through an employer withholding system. Whoa now.

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An Accident Paid Off My MFA Debt

Just over a month before I entered the graduate writing program at The New School I was struck by a car as I stepped into a crosswalk on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Along with minor abrasions, my left ear was mangled beyond repair, and as I faced a handful of surgeries in the months and years ahead, I worried how these might affect my expensive education.  I would plan each surgery around a break from school so that I could miss the least number of classes possible. At the time this was how I connected grad school to my accident, along with the knowledge that I would have to get the hell over it; I had an M.F.A. dream to fulfill.

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Student Loan Debt: Bad for the Economy

The Federal Reserve of New York released some numbers last week that show — surprise! — student loan debt is higher than ever. Sam Frizell at Time talks about how student loans aren’t just bad for our own personal economies, they’re bad for THE economy.

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Two States Offer Proposals to Pay for College; Economists Like Neither of Them

Two states Oregon and Tennessee consider two new ways to fund college tuition: Tennessee is considering the “Tennessee Promise,” which proposes free tuition for two years of community college or technical school and would be funded through sales of lottery tickets. Oregon is considering “The Pay It Forward” program, which I’ve previously discussed here, in which students would pay no tuition upfront—rather they’d pay a small percentage of their income for a set number of years after graduating from college.

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Duke Says $60K Tuition Is a Bargain

In 1984, it cost $10,000 a year to go to Duke University. Today, it’s $60,000 a year. “It’s staggering,” says Duke freshman Max Duncan, “especially considering that for four years.”

But according to Jim Roberts, executive vice provost at Duke, that’s actually a discount. “We’re investing on average about $90,000 in the education of each student,” he says. Roberts is not alone in making the claim. In fact, it’s one most elite research institutions point to when asked about rising tuition.

Hahahahahahahahahhahahaa.

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Interview With a Person Who Paid Off $48,000 in Student Loans in Four Years

Marnie Gallowy! The Internets told me that last week—eight years after you graduated from our ol’ alma mater—that you paid off the last of your $48,000 in student loan debt. IS THAT TRUE? Are you a wizard?

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Perhaps My Nightmare Experiences With My Student Loan Servicer Will Finally End

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced recently that it would begin to supervise the seven largest “nonbank student loan servicers.” I’m pretty sure I’m not the only student loan borrower who yelled “finally!” at her radio when the announcement was made.

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Advice to Your 24-Year-Old Self

Autostraddle has a great interview with Emily Gould, which is mostly about Emily Books and you should read it. But this is the part that is relevant to us:

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The Student Debt Crisis, State-By-State

Generation Progress (formerly Campus Progress) is putting together state-by-state factsheets about the student debt crisis. They’ve done six states so far, including California, where I went as an undergrad. State and local funding dropped by 25.4 percent in the U.C. system in the last decade, and in-state tuition has now skyrocketed by 114 percent, according to data from the College Board.

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A College Rankings System Tied to Federal Funding

In an effort to get feedback on President Obama’s plans to develop a federal college ratings system, the Education Department hosted the first in a series of public forums yesterday at California State University Dominguez Hills.

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Making Extra Student Loan Payments So You Pay Down That Principal

It seems like the best thing to do would be to try to apply any extra payments towards the principal of the 9% interest rate loan before moving on to the other two lower interest loans. So, is this possible and if so, how do I do this? — J.

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