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Cost of College and other fun things

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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby psu_dad » Fri Sep 16, 2016 11:05 am

Putting it here because it makes some valid points (I think) on the ever rising cost of higher education.

I think it it totally missed the point.

Colleges are spending money like drunken sailors on shore leave because Uncle Sam has empowered them to do so. Absent the federal student loan program, there's no way colleges could be charging the ever-increasing tuition they are charging. No one could afford it.

We could fix this problem tomorrow, by cutting off federal $$$ to schools who can't keep cost increases down to the normal rate of inflation. We simply don't have the political will to do so. Heck, some like Elizabeth Warren want to double-down on the current system.

Makes me crazy.
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby SouthernLion » Fri Sep 16, 2016 11:13 am

C'mon, dad, Fauxcahontas is a real warrior for the common squaw.



I thought this article was appropriate for this thread today, noting B&W's morning semi-outrage. Seems UNC is the Wells Fargo of 'hire' education...

http://www.newsobserver.com/news/specia ... 78907.html
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby psu_dad » Fri Sep 16, 2016 11:35 am

I followed that story when it first broke. A total Horror Show, particularly in light of UNC's previously sterling (and apparently undeserved) reputation for academic integrity.

The beauty part is that the two people at the center of it (former chair of the AFAM Department Julius Nyang'oro and his secretary Deborah Crowder) were given immunity from criminal prosecution in return for their cooperation with an investigation conducted by UNC and the state. They both retired with their pensions intact.

Is this a great country, or what?
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby Blue&White » Fri Sep 16, 2016 11:55 am

First, and of paramount importance, I am not "semi-outraged". I am "mildly miffed". There is a huge difference. people that are semi-outraged may raise their voices in protest. People who are mildly miffed may have to stifle a yawn. Not the same thing. Not the same ballpark. Not the same sport.

Second, loathe as I am to ever support the NCAA on anything. how UNC can argue this is not an NCAA issue is beyond me. For example, there is this tidbit:

Nyang’oro had created a class shortly before the start of the summer semester and had no one but football players enrolled. Worse, Nyang’oro hadn’t run the class as a lecture, as it was listed, and hadn’t taught it at all. Nyang’oro also said Crowder was likely behind other classes that hadn’t met.

There were 18 football players in Nyang’oro’s class. They could have been ineligible to play for receiving a high grade in a class that had no instruction.


Seems pretty clear to me that a lot of this had to with keeping players on the field by giving them high grades for nothing. Stopping BS like that actually is within the NCAA's remit. Really at a loss to understand how UNC can make any argument to the contrary.

Third, dad said the following:

Colleges are spending money like drunken sailors on shore leave because Uncle Sam has empowered them to do so. Absent the federal student loan program, there's no way colleges could be charging the ever-increasing tuition they are charging. No one could afford it.

I agree that cheap money is part of the problem but I have two issues with your statement:
1. even without the Feds, there are private loans and I think they eat up at least half of debt for undergraduates. I know a few people in their late 20s and early 30s and they are all drowning in student loan debt and most of it is private. The stuff Obama did a year or so ago does not help them at all. There is market for these loans whether the government gets involved or not. Would it be this bad? I don't know, but it's not like there is not another source for money; and
2. the cost of college was a problem long before Uncle Sam got involved. They didn't try to fix a problem that didn't exist. Costs are ridiculous now but it was always expensive and a lot of people were frozen out because of those costs. As states cut back and the free city and state schools that existed when my parents went through college vanished, the feds got involved with cheap loans to help people pay for school so they could go. If you take away the loans, it's not like college suddenly becomes affordable for everyone. It just becomes more manageable for people like me (and I suppose debt loads become lower for everyone).

The worst part about the federal loans is how high the interest rates are. My wife has a bunch out from graduate school and most of them are at almost 7%. Where does the government get off charging that high a rate? I'm planning to refinance it with a private loan if/when my wife gets her federal loan forgiveness for working in a inner city school for 5 years. I'm hoping to get half of the loan wiped out and then I'll refinance and consolidate the rest with PNC or someone (I was originally going to go to the Wells Fargo branch around the corner from me but .... screw that, not after their recent revelations) and get the rate lower. But, it's insane how high these "cheap" federal loans are compared to the market.
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby SouthernLion » Fri Sep 16, 2016 1:11 pm

Blue&White wrote:First, and of paramount importance, I am not "semi-outraged". I am "mildly miffed". There is a huge difference. people that are semi-outraged may raise their voices in protest. People who are mildly miffed may have to stifle a yawn. Not the same thing. Not the same ballpark. Not the same sport.


Paraphrasing Pontius Pilate, 'What is mere miffage? Especially with semi-outrage on the table?'
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby psu_dad » Fri Sep 16, 2016 2:47 pm

The worst part about the federal loans is how high the interest rates are. My wife has a bunch out from graduate school and most of them are at almost 7%. Where does the government get off charging that high a rate?

Perhaps you're subsidizing the undergraduate loans, which have a lower interest rate (and higher default rate) than graduate student loans.

I got a 6-7% loan (I forget exactly) from the state when my oldest first went to PSU. Not a great rate for an undergraduate loan, but it was all I could get after the Feds told me to ESAD. I subsequently acquired an equity line of credit on my home and used that to pay off the college loan, at less than half the interest rate. Without that home equity, I would have been royally screwed.
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby Blue&White » Wed Dec 14, 2016 11:30 am

Trump's plan to make student debt great again.

Finally, after all these year, a government plan that doesn't just see me as a cash contributor. Just so we are all clear, if this passes I'm going to have my kids borrow as much money as they can, pay down the minimums over 15 years, and walk away from the rest. And, I'm not going to feel the least bit guilty about it.
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby psu_dad » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:12 pm

I suppose it's comforting to know the new POTUS is as clueless as his predecessors.

For decades, our government's steps to fix the problem of the cost of college has had the same effect as throwing gasoline on a fire. This is more of the same. This will drive already crazy tuitions way WAY higher. We'll soon have sociology profs making 200-large a year and personal assistants assigned to each student. Think about it. What would stop colleges from charging any totally ridiculous tuition they wanted if students know it's irrelevant because the actual cost to them will be capped?

Hello?
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby Blue&White » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:14 pm

That was my exact thought when I read this. I doubt this gets passed but I'm hoping for it.
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Re: Cost of College and other fun things

Postby SouthernLion » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:18 pm

Blue&White wrote:That was my exact thought when I read this. I doubt this gets passed but I'm hoping for it.


So you're saying that the Two Ferraris For Every Mid-Level College Administrator Act won't pass?

It's hard to believe that I paid for nearly all of my PSU education with proceeds from summer jobs and working on campus. But hey, there were no safe spaces back then, so how worthwhile could the education really be?
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