Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Week Eighteen: College Costs

A bit of a change back from my very politically minded post of last week. I might try alternating the two, as you must understand, I have a lot to work out. Sadly, I don't know all the answers right away. So, a visit back to college in Germany is in order. Right, so I attend Embry Riddle University – Worldwide. They have basically what amount to satellite campuses all around the world, and the one I'm at has four rooms it shares with two other colleges and an office. Weird, huh? But hey, I'm saving a lot of money over all coming here. Why? Because I can pay as I go, and take on a payment plan. This is basically my rent payment, because I live with my dad. I feel the squeeze of 'rent' too, I promise. Right now, because I managed to safe up money during the summer, I have completely paid off one course. This leaves me Only two more course to pay for this lovely quarter, and each course is $780. I basically bust my butt and save up my dollars for college. Still, 780 a course is really good, from a State-side point of view. Not so much from the view of certain other countries, however. I've done a bit of poking around, you see, and it has occurred to me that many governments heavily subsidize their universities. And by heavily, I mean, it's free, by Jove! Free! This is shocking. I'm sure you heard about the student riots in England awhile back, due to have to pay tuition fees. When my friend told me the cost and protested it to be much too high, I told her that was cheaper than many community colleges in the United States. This is very true, to my chagrin. It's also why I love that my college accepts payment. Now mind you, payments are a horrible, no good, very bad thing and you should always try and just pay outright, or hold off, but I am a full time student and shall remain thus. The payments help with this, immensely. I pay for about a class month, as quarters are about three months long. It's very nice, to tell the truth. College can be fairly expensive of course, so I honestly advocate getting the general education classes complete at a community college, along with as many other classes as possible. Your first two years, or your associate's should be done for as cheap as possible. I know of one community college, where it costs under $15,000 to receive your associate's in general education. That's less than the cost of one semester of university, especially once you add in room and board and other costs. It's a wonderful thing, don't you think? Nowadays, with the economy tanked, I'm not the only one who believes it either. Many of my friends are in community colleges across the Us, not because they are stupid, but because they, like me, don't want heaps and heaps of student loans once they get out. They all hold jobs, and work hard. All of us apply for scholarships pretty must constantly. Meanwhile, I've friends who have taken out loans for college. They're going to University and doing grand, but they're working in a field that is shrinking, not growing, and they are in denial of this. It's scary for me to watch, but it is their life and their decision. As for me? I am not going to waste my hard earned cash on a college degree that I cannot use, and I will not delude myself into thinking I'll be making the big bucks right out of college. The average for my field is 48K. But that is an average, not the whole thing. I will be very satisfied with whatever I am paid, so long as it is at least a few dollars over minimum wage. After all, I'm paying for this career opportunity, so I would like to profit! One Final Byte: Debt is no tool, but an evil force.

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