April 1, 2023

Considering College Loans For Students?

loansAre you considering obtaining college loans for students?  If so, consider the fact that more people feel the pressure to go to college than ever before, but less people are finding degree-level jobs when they graduate.  More than a third of college graduates end up in jobs that didn’t require a college degree in the first place.  Last year only 55% of Americans in the 18-29 age bracket were employed.  The average income of 25-34 year olds has decreased by 12%.  Even more disturbing, 86% of 20-somethings are pessimistic about the future.

Who can blame them?  The cost of education is staggering and the only way most can pay for it is by enslaving themselves to debt for the foreseeable future.  Did you know the price of a college education has increased 900% since 1978?  Or that two-thirds of college graduates begin their working life saddled with student loan debt?   The average amount is $25,000, with much higher debt burdens for doctors, lawyers, and others with advanced degrees.

What is wrong with this picture? 

The Need to Reevaluate Our Educational Priorities

By making it easy for students to get college loans, subsidizing education costs, and guaranteeing federal loans, the government has encouraged millions of people to go deep into debt before they even begin earning wages.  Even worse, costs have escalated uncontrollably and the quality of education has fallen.

Here’s a hard, cold fact that many people won’t agree with.  Not everyone needs to go to a traditional college!  Unless you have a specific career goal that absolutely requires a college degree or greater, you’re better off learning a trade and entering the work force as soon as possible.  Yes, society says you need a college degree. Yes, there are snobby people who frown on the lack of higher education.  But those aren’t the people who must pay for it. No, let me rephrase that.  Those are the people who don’t realize they are paying for it with their tax dollars. Tax dollars that could be used to encourage job creation.

A Practical Alternative?

What if the government stopped “helping” people get college educations?  What if there were no more subsidies, no more grants, or federal student loans? What if we allowed free market enterprise to take over instead?

If that happened, only doctors, engineers, scientists, and those who need intensive training would spend years in college.  A competitive market would ensure that costs come down and quality goes up.  Many educational venues would switch to providing more affordable training for practical, marketable skills without the unnecessary classes that make college a drawn out and expensive ordeal.

New York Times’ Michael Ellsberg said American academia is good at producing writers, literary critics, and historians. It is also good at producing professionals with degrees. But we don’t have a shortage of lawyers and professors. America has a shortage of job creators. And the people who create jobs aren’t traditional professionals, but start-up entrepreneurs.”

America was built on free enterprise.  Now is the time to encourage that same entrepreneurial spirit that made our country great in the first place. It’s definitely not the time to force people to leap through unnecessary hoops or to smother them with crushing debt before they even have a chance to breathe.  Let’s go back to the way that worked.  Let’s take the government’s so-called ‘help’ out of our higher education system and get to work the old-fashioned way… the American way.

George Gallagher is an economics and finance writer and blogger. He also works with privatestudentloanconsolidation forums and question and answer websites.













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