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comment by oyster
oyster  ·  1139 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: More Than 40% of Student Borrowers Aren’t Making Payments

We have thing called career colleges which I think are very similar and receive similar complaints about crummy classes. A friend of mine went to a college in my city which had a really good Massage Therapy program with these two girls who had transferred from one of these colleges ( I think it was Everest) and they were so behind they pretty much had to restart. I can't imagine how pissed off I would be paying off the debt from that school. Even reputable colleges however have programs which don't really benefit the student as I'm sure any school does but people do it since they think they should. Which is a really crummy way to go about things. My only friend who really has his life together joined the military, and from constantly looking at people struggle I'm determined to just pay it off as quickly as possible. For me to achieve that I tell myself it's a small amount and life will be so darn grand after I'm done. If I told myself it was a huge amount then I wouldn't see how I was able to pay it off and I would just give up. It's like I get you aren't supposed to have everything figured out at 20 but I really wish they didn't make it so easy to fuck everything up at that age.

    I wonder if living with a lower income is easier in Canada

I'm getting that impression ! I mean I got lucky in a lot of ways, my first job as a part time cashier gave me 100% prescription drug coverage so on top of not having to worry about doctors visits I also didn't worry about prescriptions. On top of that I got 10% off groceries which might seem small to start but it's not. I kept that job through college because on top of that I was guaranteed a certain number of hours for being there for a long time. After that I worked in a bar and I am fully aware I got that job because of looks/body. OH and also server wage in Ontario is higher than some minimum wages I've seen in the states. I could have easily stuck with that and done quite well for myself but I wanted to travel for work a bit. The local doctors office that most of my family goes to is amazing too, I don't know how they swing it but they have a counselor you can see for free. The wait list can be like 3 week long but as you point out you've waited longer to see a doctor that you paid for. So ya I got lucky in a quite a few things.

Obviously not everybody around me has that stuff though, and they still seemingly have it better. Everybody complains about the buses but they are actually really good. I'm not saying it's easy to get everywhere or particularly safe but the buses are there. Actually they started a new thing in my city where after a certain time you can ask the bus driver to let you off at a certain spot along the route that's safer for you. I've had to add 30 minutes to my trips because I didn't feel safe at the stop I should have got off at and I've also had to walk 30 minutes to the main bus since one bus didn't run early enough but all in all it's pretty good.

I don't know much about our social programs in comparison but I know they are pretty good. I also know we have things that don't exist in the states like the child care benefit. For people who live in rural communities that aren't near major cities it kind of sucks because they don't have as many opportunities to get ahead. As far as thing like rent and utilities go that varies a lot depending on which province you are in which I imagine is similar to the states. Even then though you can generally live in a crappy neighborhood without actually worrying that much about violence. I mean I lived in those neighborhoods, and sure one of my friends got stabbed but it's not like that's the norm. On a long enough timeline somebody is going to get stabbed everywhere. So we technically have "bad" neighborhoods but I wouldn't compare them to ones in the states. Other than first nations reserves that is, and that is a whole complex problem.

user-inactivated  ·  1138 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Holy shit, yeah, Everest is one of those for profit colleges. It's absolutely insane to think that these places actually exist.

A lot of my old friends are in the military. They either never went to college and ended up joining the military almost right away, or they went to college, dropped the idea for one reason or another, and joined the military as a backup. For a lot of people, there's a lot of appeal to becoming a serviceman. Garunteed pay, decent benefits while you're active and after (kind of, the VA is actually pretty fucked up), a promotional structure, on the job training, etc. The only downside is, a few of them have decided that career military is not the way for them to go, so when their time of service is up, they don't re-up. Now they're almost back where they started, because despite what military recruiters tell you, on the job military training doesn't always translate to marketable skills in the civilian world.

As for poor neighborhoods, while the actual risk of being a victim of a crime is statistically higher, sometimes people blow it a little out of proportion. However, whether or not you actually ever get stabbed or mugged or burgled is a bit of a moot point. The environment alone can be draining. When you're not home, you're worried about your possessions at home and whether or not they're safe. When the neighbors down the way are being loud as fuck for a place that already has thin walls, up until 3 o'clock in the morning, the loss of sleep has a very real impact on your mood and ability to be productive. When the pipes in your apartment building freeze and burst and your landlord takes a week to fix them because he doesn't give a fuck about the law, there goes your ability to shower and make yourself coffee. On and on it goes. Not only that, but I sometimes think that the actual worry of being harmed is more damaging than actually being harmed. It can be really difficult.

    I mean I got lucky in a lot of ways.

We've both been very lucky and I think the majority of the people on Hubski feel the exact same way. In comparison to what's going on in a lot of the world, we have it pretty alright. You gotta give yourself credit though, cause luck is only the half of it. You're also smart and it sounds like you're hard working as well. You've made some good, well thought out decisions to get you where you are in life right now and if you keep making good decisions, you'll probably turn out a little "luckier" every year. You got a lot to be proud of. :)

oyster  ·  1138 days ago  ·  link  ·  

They really are the worst, they prey on people and make them think that going to their crappy school will result in actually getting something. The thing is to in my city we have a really good college that offers the same programs but obviously better which makes it even harder to find something after the fact. Like not only does your diploma pretty much suck but you have to compete against people who went to the good college for jobs. It's just not going to happen.

Something interesting I found yesterday was 54% of borrowers said that if they could do it over they may have made different college choices. It would be interesting to find out how many of those students went to these for profit colleges.

user-inactivated  ·  1138 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Shit. 54% actually sounds really low. Hopefully a lot of college age kids will be able to learn from the rough experiences of the past decade or so.

oyster  ·  1138 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It seemed low when I look at my friend but really there was a bunch of people who did pretty good. I just don't talk to those people. A couple of my friends have more or less accepted it and made peace with things too. My friend and I actually had a conversation the other day in which she was saying that although she knows she could have been in less debt she doesn't regret it. So I don't think people like her would say they would do things over even though it didn't pay off in an obvious way. Like I moved across the country and after the first night woke up with bugs crawling on me. Most people would regret that, and at first I did but in the end I wouldn't actually change anything. They even came back just before moving to fuck with me but I still wouldn't have changed things.

I'm hoping, I mean the conversation has really shifted in the past years. Going to community college and then university is seen as a good option more as well and people are just starting to look at it differently in my experience. It's helpful to talk about how insane the cost is overall but that just doesn't help the people who want to go to school now and get on with their lives. It helps the next generation which is awesome but this one needs solutions too.