... and boom goes the federal student loan program. 20 replies, 17718 views

Tim E. Husk
8/10/2011 5:18:00 PM
As of July 1, 2012, subsidized federal loans will cease to exist and interest rates will - almost across the board - increase.

It looks like the tuition-raising cycle is going to get an unavoidable but deadly interruption. State budgets have been and will continue to be slashed for education, and private/corporate donations obviously suffer from the same factors that drive the other developments.

If it seems hardly worth going to college now, wait a few years.
deadlift
8/10/2011 5:21:00 PM
we need more skilled laborers anyway. the hourly rate for plumbers and electricians has almost doubled in the past 10 years in my area because of the shortage or qualified people. i have a few friends that do these type of trades and they make so much fucking money and don't have any debt to pay back from loans due to college.
crunkmoose
8/10/2011 5:25:00 PM
Oh good... no more higher education for anyone who isn't wealthy. Well, now that that is gone we can finally get on to more important and lucrative investments in things like... giving more money to the wealthy and oil companies.
Dickscraper
8/10/2011 5:29:00 PM
if i were president, there would be no use for skilled labor because i would divert all funds to math and science programs and robots would do all manual labor. the only skill people would need in my utopia is the knowledge of how to make said robots better.
aboutleaving
8/10/2011 5:33:00 PM
good job education and crime aren't linked. jesus christ america.
deadlift
8/10/2011 5:35:00 PM
our nation is run by idiots... what do you expect?
Pollcat
8/10/2011 5:36:00 PM
Originally posted by: deadlift

we need more skilled laborers anyway. the hourly rate for plumbers and electricians has almost doubled in the past 10 years in my area because of the shortage or qualified people. i have a few friends that do these type of trades and they make so much fucking money and don't have any debt to pay back from loans due to college.

Wait until they come for your wages and benefits. Look at what's happening to members of IBEW who work Verizon.
Tim E. Husk
8/10/2011 5:36:00 PM
While we certainly do, it's not as simple as "we need more skilled laborers anyway."

Consider this:

1) Public colleges and universities are funded through a mix of tuition, individual donations, federal funds, state funds, corporate donations, non-governmental research organizations, and more. (Contrary to popular belief, the sports teams do nothing but fund themselves - even the biggest, wealthiest football programs do not contribute to academics. At best they subsidize other sports teams.)

2) When state and federal sources are slashed, as they have been yearly since the recession began, raising tuition is one of the only ways to compensate, since donations and other sources also dry up from a shrunken economy.

3) Students and their parents are also fucked because of these same factors, so they take out more loans.

4) If loans are harder to get, have higher interest rates, and lack any subsidized options, there are no other choices.

Are there too many people in college getting pointless degrees who would be better served with trade skills? Of course, but let's examine the reasons for our current state.

1) There actually was a time when simply having a degree was a ticket to a better life (most of the time), and when even liberal arts majors were prized for having a degree even if the job they did afterward had nothing to do with it. This magical time was also when mostly rich, mostly white, and mostly male people were the ones to get those degrees, and the overall numbers were fairly low.

2) Enter the GI-bill era post-WWII, enter civil rights and integration, enter feminism and women's movements, enter the increased desire for diversity and foreign students. Suddenly (but not really so suddenly), we have a vastly superior system of higher education where any kind of person has a chance.

3) Beyond diversification, college enrollments have skyrocketed with increased access to loans, lower standards to accommodate more students, and the cultural idea that a degree is still a kind of mealticket.

4) But with increased numbers come many of the problems we have experienced today. Parents for whom college was a panacea are sending their children to get degrees that hold little value.

5) Students who realize this, and society at large, start blaming all of the easy targets (professors, the government, etc.) without reflection on why they made the choices they have. No respectable college ever has or ever will guarantee you a job.

I could go on all day, but the factors are numerous, interwoven, and deeply rooted in American cultural attitudes and developments - good and bad - over the past 4-5 decades.
LEATHERFACE
8/10/2011 5:37:00 PM
I have no use for college, so it doesn't affect me, but the fact that we're willing to drop a couple hundred thousand to put a pot head behind bars while nixing education is just retarded. This is what happens when families become too powerful, it's like the Hapsburgs all over again. History, rinse, and repeat.
deadlift
8/10/2011 5:39:00 PM
Originally posted by: adam.

While we certainly do, it's not as simple as "we need more skilled laborers anyway."

Consider this:

1) Public colleges and universities are funded through a mix of tuition, individual donations, federal funds, state funds, corporate donations, non-governmental research organizations, and more. (Contrary to popular belief, the sports teams do nothing but fund themselves - even the biggest, wealthiest football programs do not contribute to academics. At best they subsidize other sports teams.)

2) When state and federal sources are slashed, as they have been yearly since the recession began, raising tuition is one of the only ways to compensate, since donations and other sources also dry up from a shrunken economy.

3) Students and their parents are also fucked because of these same factors, so they take out more loans.

4) If loans are harder to get, have higher interest rates, and lack any subsidized options, there are no other choices.

Are there too many people in college getting pointless degrees who would be better served with trade skills? Of course, but let's examine the reasons for our current state.

1) There actually was a time when simply having a degree was a ticket to a better life (most of the time), and when even liberal arts majors were prized for having a degree even if the job they did afterward had nothing to do with it. This magical time was also when mostly rich, mostly white, and mostly male people were the ones to get those degrees, and the overall numbers were fairly low.

2) Enter the GI-bill era post-WWII, enter civil rights and integration, enter feminism and women's movements, enter the increased desire for diversity and foreign students. Suddenly (but not really so suddenly), we have a vastly superior system of higher education where any kind of person has a chance.

3) Beyond diversification, college enrollments have skyrocketed with increased access to loans, lower standards to accommodate more students, and the cultural idea that a degree is still a kind of mealticket.

4) But with increased numbers come many of the problems we have experienced today. Parents for whom college was a panacea are sending their children to get degrees that hold little value.

5) Students who realize this, and society at large, start blaming all of the easy targets (professors, the government, etc.) without reflection on why they made the choices they have. No respectable college ever has or ever will guarantee you a job.

I could go on all day, but the factors are numerous, interwoven, and deeply rooted in American cultural attitudes and developments - good and bad - over the past 4-5 decades.

you're right.. I should not have worded it that way. but we are in dire need for people in certain trades because the majority of the people that are currently in the trades are soon to retire with no one qualified to replace them.
deadlift
8/10/2011 5:45:00 PM
Originally posted by: Pollcat

Originally posted by: deadlift

we need more skilled laborers anyway. the hourly rate for plumbers and electricians has almost doubled in the past 10 years in my area because of the shortage or qualified people. i have a few friends that do these type of trades and they make so much fucking money and don't have any debt to pay back from loans due to college.

Wait until they come for your wages and benefits. Look at what's happening to members of IBEW who work Verizon.

I know man, my dad and grandfather were both part of the sheet metal workers union and I've seen the good and the bad of that line of work.
Tim E. Husk
8/10/2011 5:53:00 PM
Just in case someone with a stereotypical conservative view on professorial pay enters the discussion, I think it is important to point out that the public perception is often WILDLY inaccurate, to say the least.

Rockstar professors in some hard science or business departments at the highest-rated schools can indeed make a lot of money, but these people represent a minute fraction of one percent of the professiorate.

In the humanities the average salary for a tenure-track assistant professor is often similar to that of full-time lecturers (around 30k), and for associate professors it ranges from 50-70k. Full professors with large publishing records can get upwards of 100k, but even in large departments this means only a select few. No one actually gets "summers off," and, while workloads aren't defined by clocking in and out, the work week is never over and 40 hours would be considered a blessedly light load.

Add to this the fact that professors are a dying breed today, given the freezing of hiring lines and the proliferation of the adjunct class, a seemingly permanent academic underclass of phd-holding instructors who get paid by the class and make poverty wages with no benefits and no representational rights.

Yep, it sure is a bunch of overpaid, lazy Marxists.
Dickscraper
8/10/2011 5:59:00 PM
Originally posted by: deadlift

Originally posted by: Pollcat

Originally posted by: deadlift

we need more skilled laborers anyway. the hourly rate for plumbers and electricians has almost doubled in the past 10 years in my area because of the shortage or qualified people. i have a few friends that do these type of trades and they make so much fucking money and don't have any debt to pay back from loans due to college.

Wait until they come for your wages and benefits. Look at what's happening to members of IBEW who work Verizon.

I know man, my dad and grandfather were both part of the sheet metal workers union and I've seen the good and the bad of that line of work.


my dad was in that union too until he destroyed his back
LEATHERFACE
8/10/2011 6:04:00 PM
Originally posted by: Sharplimbed

good job education and crime aren't linked. jesus christ america.

What the fuck do you mean "jesus christ america"? Look out your own damn window and smell London burning, asshole.
aboutleaving
8/10/2011 6:29:00 PM
someone's touchy. people can criticise more than one thing. you get to criticise my country and i get to criticise yours. you're only upset because you disagree with me about the politics of the issue.

perhaps I should have added "London" after saying "Fucking disgusting", so no one thinks i'm picking on America.

Or perhaps none of us should criticise anything in either of our countries before criticising somalia, sudan, libya, sri lanka, syria, the congo, burma, north korea, zimbabwe, brazil, south africa, and many other countries first. EVERY TIME WE SPEAK!
Billy Crystals
8/10/2011 6:29:00 PM
At least we still have money for the military and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. If my kids can't read or go to college at least they can blow up brown people on the other side of the world.

God bless the U.S.
Tim E. Husk
8/10/2011 6:41:00 PM
Always useful in a discussion like this:

Mike M.
8/10/2011 6:43:00 PM
who is this adam dude? the guy is smart.

there is a lot going on here, but i'll say this. With everything we blow money on (foreign and domestic), education should not even be close to reaching "chopping block" status.

that said, we also need to take a good hard look at what a college degree really is these days. sometimes I actually wish I went to trade school to be an electrician rather than suffer through the empty, underwhelming business "education" that I endured to the tune of 30k in debt.
Billy Crystals
8/10/2011 6:45:00 PM
That picture doesn't take into account the wars though, does it?
Mike M.
8/10/2011 6:49:00 PM
copyright 2004? i guess it would?

Originally posted by: Billy Crystals

That picture doesn't take into account the wars though, does it?

Billy Crystals
8/10/2011 6:54:00 PM
I don't see any mention of it. I thought the funding for both wars was always sought separately to the overall budget? I could be wrong obviously.

Also, glad to see the chart dividing the Dept Of Energy in half in regards to it's nuclear weapons designations. I think a lot people don't know, or forget, that a lot of "defense" spending goes into the DOE while not looking like it.