• Cyburbia is a friendly big tent, where we share our experiences and thoughts about urban planning practice, the built environment, planning adjacent topics, and anything else that comes to mind. No ads, no spam, and it's free. It's easy to join!

Rant 🗣 Paying for school


I was watching the news a while ago and heard a story about the great expense of paying for college. They were interviewing lots of people who were saying that college is just too expensive and it is unfair that only the rich people can afford to send their kids to college.

Haven't these people ever heard of student loans. I grew up in an average suburban family and, like many of my college friends, paid for school all by myself with the help of the federal government. My family was my no means poor, but that did not mean that they could pay for college for me.

It is my understanding that loans are avaliable to almost everybody, regardless of income, age, bad credit, or whatever. Paying for school myself was a bit difficult at times, and I had to get part time jobs to pay for rent, especially in grad school. It seems to me that these people were just making excuses for themselves. Yes, college is expensive, but the expense should not prevent somebody from going to collge if they really want to. I think that many of the people who say that they do not attend college because they can not afford it, really do not have the desire to go. I think that if they wanted to go, they would make it work somehow and stop complaining.
I think that a college degree is attainable for most everyone. Well, as long as you are willing to accrue some debt, eat lots of ramen noodles, possibly attend a community college to get your core courses out of the way.

My mom likes to reminisce about the good old days when she could work during the summers to pay her tuition bill for the year. Even for state tuition, I think a student would be really hard pressed to find a summer job that support tuition and living expenses.

The only bitch I have about paying for college is that my student loan interest rate is higher than my mortgage. Damn the deregulation of the industry in the 80's.


Working your way through...

I went back to school in the late '80's, with no student loans and no scholaships...

I worked 30-40 hours a week and took between 15 and 18 course hours every semester. I was always behind on my payments to the school, but they were cool about it... especially knowing the bill had to be paid to get the diploma. Not getting any sleep for four years sucked... not seeing my family because I was working, at school, up late on a project, or asleep sucked, but you know what was the worst?

Listening to snot-nosed rich brats whine about a project that would cut into their partying time...