Our country seems pretty comfortable screwing over generation after generation of young college students. In fact, we seem to prefer it that way. We don’t give financial literacy courses in high school. We don’t discuss economics or what expenses are awaiting teens when they come of age. No, we just offer a couple of choices. College or no college. No college usually means no debt, but less pay over a lifetime. Choosing college means huge debt, but more pay; yet even that is not guaranteed.
The choice whether to attend college or not used to be fairly easy for most, until about ten or so years ago when the cost of getting any degree skyrocketed, leaving millions with ridiculous amounts of student loan debt. In the past we’ve featured interviews with new graduates who talked about the ways their student debt adversely affected their lives. Being able to get married, having kids, buying a house: all delayed or out of reach due to the financial burden of paying back student loans. We’d like to remind some of you out there that student loans are not dischargeable by bankruptcy. There is literally no way out of paying them back, no matter how large or burdensome they are.
Many new graduates have to find jobs quickly so they can start paying off their large monthly payments. This often means losing out on jobs in their chosen field since they can’t afford to wait too long to start earning money. That means the financial pressure from student loans often puts debtors into jobs that don’t utilize their skills, and more often than not, don’t pay well. As of a few years ago, half of college graduates were either underemployed or didn’t have any job. As Benjamin Franklin once said.”Well, that’s just fucking great now, isn’t it?”
Today’s clip features a young graduate discussing the burdens of finding work. Because of his monthly student loan payments, his options are limited in what employment he can afford to accept. It’s a sober reminder that the student loan crises is an ongoing issue, turning millions of twenty-somethings into a generation of debtors unable to get their heads above water financially. It’s completely fucked up, and it needs to change. By the way, Ben Franklin did not say that. That was jazz legend, Miles Davis. Enjoy the clip.