Student Loan Bubble To Exceed $1 Trillion: "It's Going To Create A Generation Of Wage Slavery" And Another Taxpayer Bailout

Tyler Durden's picture

First, this is the total amount of student debt in real time:



While one of the biggest complaints of #OccupyWallStreet protesters, and much of the balance of middle-class America, continues to be the burden of student loans, the paradox is that, as the USA Today reports once again on one of its favorite subjects, student loans are set to surpass $1 trillion in total notional for the first time in history on what appears to be relentless demand and interest for this cheap form of educational financing, making this debt burden the single largest form of consumer debt, well bigger than outstanding credit card debt, and smaller only compared to mortgage debt. "The amount of student loans taken out last year crossed the $100 billion mark for the first time and total loans outstanding will exceed $1 trillion for the first time this year. Americans now owe more on student loans than on credit cards, reports the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Students are borrowing twice what they did a decade ago after adjusting for inflation, the College Board reports. Total outstanding debt has doubled in the past five years — a sharp contrast to consumers reducing what's owed on home loans and credit cards." What explains this insatiable demand for this kind of debt? Well, it's cheap, it's easily accessible (the collateral is education), and it is fungible - a student can take out a loan, yet use part or all of the balance for tangential purchases (that iPhone 4S sure would make me cool). But this, like every other debt, comes at a price.

Per USA Today:

Taxpayers and other lenders have little risk of losing money on the loans, unlike mortgages made during the real estate bubble. Congress has given the lenders, the government included, broad collection powers, far greater than those of mortgage or credit card lenders. The debt can't be shed in bankruptcy.


The credit risk falls on young people who will start adult life deeper in debt, a burden that could place a drag on the economy in the future.


"Students who borrow too much end up delaying life-cycle events such as buying a car, buying a home, getting married (and) having children," says Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of

Naturally, just like in the credit bubble days, when NINJA loans were fast and furious, the lines in front of banks stretched around the block. Banks may or may not have known that the loans would be repaid, but nobody pressured borrowers to live in that big McMansion that "demanded" $1 down and a 99.9% LTV. Sure enough, when the day of reckoning comes, it is never the fault of the person who probably should have shown some restraint, but no: after all everyone else is doing it.

Well, it is the same thing now. And with generations of people indoctrinated that only those with a college degree can be successful, it is only obvious that student debt is now the next big bubble.

"It's going to create a generation of wage slavery," says Nick Pardini, a Villanova University graduate student in finance who has warned on a blog for investors that student loans are the next credit bubble — with borrowers, rather than lenders, as the losers.


Full-time undergraduate students borrowed an average $4,963 in 2010, up 63% from a decade earlier after adjusting for inflation, the College Board reports. What's happening:

Granted, unlike with the mortgage bubble collapse, this time we know, as Zero Hedge reported earlier in the week, that everyone is on the fraud. We quote from "The Fraud At The Heart Of Student Lending Exposed - The One Sentence Everyone Should Read"

A key reason why a preponderance of the population is fascinated with the student loan market is that as USA Today reported in a landmark piece last year, it is now bigger than ever the credit card market. And as the monthly consumer debt update from the Fed reminds us, the primary source of funding is none other than the US government. To many, this market has become the biggest credit bubble in America. Why do we make a big deal out of this? Because as Bloomberg reported last night, we now have prima facie evidence that the student loan market is not only an epic bubble, but it is also the next subprime! To wit: "Vince Sampson, president, Education Finance Council, said during a panel at the IMN ABS East Conference in Miami Monday that lenders are no longer pushing loans to people who can’t afford them." Re-read the last sentence as many times as necessary for it to sink in. Yes: just like before lenders were "pushing loans to people who can't afford them" which became the reason for the subprime bubble which has since spread to prime, but was missing the actual confirmation from authorities of just this action, this time around we have actual confirmation that student loans are being actually peddled to people who can not afford them. And with the government a primary source of lending, we will be lucky if tears is all this ends in.

So... debtors know it's a bubble, lenders know it's a bubble, everyone knows it's a bubble, yet it is growing faster now than ever before.

If nothing this is a fantastic exercise in observing a slow at first, then fast-motion train wreck from the side. It is without a shadow of a doubt, that not only will the student debt bubble pop, but writedowns on amounts outstanding will be massive, potentially resulting in another hit of 50% to total notionals, or about $500 billion. And since the borrowers will be fully tapped out, and the lenders will plead ignorance, and control the regulators and administration any way, is there any doubt who will once again be forced to pay for this upcoming bail out? This is something that does not require a college degree to figure out...

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Mr Kurtz's picture

Back in the day when I was in college, I always purchased textbook directly from the publishing house. I would go to the college bookstore, copy the ISBN numbers and then make the call. Could count on anywhere from a 25-50 percent price break. Even snagged a few "Teacher Editions" and "Solution Manuals".

My wife is currently finishing her Master's and has saved a boat load of cash by downloading textbooks directly from KINDLE. Many for only $9.99 a pop. It takes time but there are ways to get around the greedy bastards.

Janice's picture

Agreed Bumblebee, but the real pain there is often, you have to have pre-requisites to take the courses that you want. Also, you have to fight the advisors who want to keep you coming back.

d_senti's picture

I agree with school being mostly fluff. That's why I want to focus on a hard, practical skill, like accounting. It significantly cuts down on the excess, as the so-called "soft-sciences" have become groupthink echo chambers. Any alternative viewpoints are quickly dismissed.

I would argue, however, that the student loan racket is directly tied to the tuition racket. It's the same as subprime; you throw around a lot of easy credit and you'll send prices through the roof. Healthcare, school, housing, treasuries, and on and on, all a consequence of easy money from TPTB.

legal eagle's picture

None of the normal financial planning rules apply in these screwed up financial times.  The question is - do you just want to make more $$?  Then, skip the school and buy commodities, gold and silver.  Learn hedging techniques.  If you actually want the education, then take out the loans, take out more and buy gold if they let you, and wait for the hyperinflation to hit.

I went seriously in debt for my education, looking back it was the best investment ever.  What looked like a ton of cash back then seems like nothing serious now.

Deadpool's picture

I hear Apple has an opening for chief P.R. dude.

AldousHuxley's picture

That job went to some Chinese college kid for $1 /hour because Steve Jobs didn't want to pay American living wage.

Instead of factory worker suiciders jumping off of corprote dorms, we will have white collar worker suiciders jumping off of high rises.


Steve Jobs was an ass for giving us some new toys and wants everyone else to be a workaholic like him.

His father was a jerk too.

He wrote the book because he loved his company more than his family and wanted his kids to learn about their father from a freaking book.


Corporate execs attract jerks who don't give  a shit abotu any normal human beings and want money money money.

SilverDosed's picture

A tip you may or may not have considered yet, look into CLEP tests and other forms of self-guided study. 77 bucks for the test, you can find all the information you need to learn to pass the tests online for free, and if you pass you get between 3-8 credit hours per test accepted at most schools. Most schools allow up to 32 credit hours from CLEP, some up to 64. Thats two years worth of worthless core classes you can knock out for a couple hundred bucks. After that get your max Pell grants for the classes you'll actually use. If you stay in-state and work part-time you should be able to get by student loan free for the most part. At least I did. Another thing to consider is lengthening out your timeline a little. You dont get a larger Pell Grant for taking more courses and you sacrifice your ability to work part time and spend time with your family if you take too many courses. Take your 13 credit hours required for max Pell Grants but theres no need to take 19 to finish sooner when you can just stay in for an extra semester and get those credit hours covered by more grant money. 

d_senti's picture

Not a bad call if I'm looking to maximize how much I can get from grants, but in my mind it's important to get a skill and a job ASAP. I see things turning south very soon. If it turns a little south (depression), having a job means I have a good chance of riding it out (if I'm not fired of course, but getting hired during a depression isn't easy). If it goes very south, then it's not gonna matter either way, right?

CLEP is definitely a smart choice though. Yet another bit of good advice. This is why I brought it up on ZH instead of anywhere else: smart people, different ideas, no rose-colored glasses and no mainstream "college is a universal good" mentality.

Stevious's picture

Make a ficticious name, get a ficticious email.

Research and create a decent accounting clerk resume.

Send 100 out to appropriate potential hirers.

Count the interested responses.  If greater than 5, go for it.

If zero, you're being misled.

batterycharged's picture


That's what I have done. You can't base job demand on want ads, because you don't know how many of then are bogus and how many get 1000 applicants per.

You can also call HR departments and ask how many applicants they get.

I bailed on nursing when I was told by an HR rep that there were a ton of fresh applicants for the few jobs they had.

It's very difficult finding a career niche now. And the outrageous cost of college makes it a huge gamble that you don't want to lose.

slewie the pi-rat's picture



  • 1) go to adult school
  • 2) take quikBooks course
  • 3) self-paced, if possible, but w/ a good instructor (there are many)
  • 4) get to work, BiCh!
slewie the pi-rat's picture

check this out!

presidential candidate ralphie-boy nader endorses presidential candidate ron paul-introduced bill HR 1831: Let It Grow 

fuu's picture

It's almost a match made in heaven.

John Wayne's picture

Hey fellow ZHers, I'm considering going back to school and looking for some advice. My question is: is it worth it? So let's hear it, and thanks to anyone who replies!


I'm Going to Kill Myself Tonight

I haven't worked a steady job in 3 years. I don't have any savings, I don't have a car, I don't have a home, and I no longer have a sense of basic human dignity, nor even the frail hope that I will someday be able to regain it. I tossed around the idea of robbing and stealing all week, but I guess I'm not cut out for it. All I have is a bad credit score, a pile of inescapable student debt, and until about 5 minutes ago the last handful of Oxycontin I had after trading away my pistol for it 2 weeks ago(so I wouldn't shoot myself. Turns out I'm not a good drug dealer either).

Although I only recently became a member, I have been reading this blog for a long time. It has been one of the only consistent bright spots in my life. I can't sit back anymore and watch my country and the people in it dissolve into nothingness at the hands of the kleptocracy. I've spent many sleepless nights contemplating bringing my own justice to the pillagers and murderers of Wall Street and Washington, but that would only give them more power. But...YOU BASTARDS ARE KILLING US! WE ARE OUT HERE STARVING! Someone not quite as fearful of God WILL come along and take no mercy on you or your families if you don't change your ways. That NASDAQ breach should be a wake-up call.

Normal people, the poor and middle class families you lying psychopaths pretend to care about whenever there's a microphone nearby, have been taking to the streets for over a month now. It is time to stop spending money on wars nobody here wants, and stop giving "aid" to countries that hate us when there are people at home with NOTHING! Stop giving your bankster friends BAILOUTS while the average person goes to the JAILHOUSE for speaking up. It is time you spineless hawks and gutless hogs stop spending OUR -LITERAL- blood, sweat, tears in ways that only serve to enrich you and your den of thieves. If you can print up trillions of dollars to hand foreign banks and wall street pimps, no strings attached, why do you have to tax US(A) to death? Let WE THE PEOPLE keep our money! LET US HAVE A FAIR CHANCE AT SUCCESS!

I don't have anyone to say goodbye to, so that's why this is here. Thank you Zero Hedge for being a voice of reason in a batshit insane world. Thank you to all the members for, if nothing else, being one step ahead of most. I hope there are many more people out there who WON'T succumb to weakness as I have.

PS - It's not worth it.

Vic Vinegar's picture

Don't off yourself yet.  Aren't you the least bit curious to see if the Fed is still around after 12/21/12?

Burnbright's picture

You know you could fight your student loan debt through debt validation letters. 

I wouldn't just give up on life, things get better if you make it better. Just my two cents.

Janice's picture

I swear, I know what you are going through, there are a shit-load of people in your same place. I'm not trying to pander religion, but you may want to find a church. It seems like you have morals & standards, maybe you need to surround yourself with like-minded people. I know that people aren't always cool in church, but there are some good churches, with a few good people left. Visit several churches before you commit to one. It's not always about the offering plate.

I always get upset when someone talks about suicide. In my mind, suicide is a hollow act. There is someone out there who desperately needs YOU, whether it is a companion, a friend, or a child who needs a mentor. It is your responsibility to seek that person out, to complete your life by bettering theirs. I swear, I've know so many people who have committed suicide, but if they'd just waited, one day, one week, one month, one year or five years, their life would have been ok.

Life sucks and it's not fair. But ending your life without fufilling your purpose sucks and is unfair also.

Ahmeexnal's picture

He's sick of the student debt racket...and you want him to fall into the religion racket?

He has lost all his you want him to lose his soul too??


Janice's picture

Against my better judgement, I will respond to your comment. Not religion so much as the Bible. And where do you study the Bible? In church. Look, I am certainly not a religious zealot. Religion has been use to kill multitudes. But what do you believe and where do you find confirmation of your beliefs? I believe that all things happen for a reason. Ultimately, I believe in justice, that truth will prevail. So where do you find those two concepts, justice and a reason? Well, I know where I won't find them. I won't find them in our legal system, not in our President, not in the schools, not in our military, not at work, not in my spouse, kids or parents, not in Greek mythology, not in drugs, not in psychology, not in Freud, not in Einstein, not the government. There's a long list of places where you find no reason and no justice. Those are Biblical concepts.

So, what do you believe and where do you find confirmation of that belief? If you believe that it dog eat dog, and survival of the fittests, then by all
means don't let my beliefs deter your path. Keep doing what you've been doing, you are on the right track to confirm your beliefs. Eventually, you'll be eaten by a bigger, stronger, better dog. Eventually I'll be eaten by a bigger, stronger, better dog. But for me, it will have happened for a reason and ultimately the appropiate party will have justice, whether it's them or me.

Banksters's picture

I love you.  We'll make it.  Don't give up.

The_Nihilist's picture

You are just saying that to keep extracting money from him you evil banker!

Conrad Murray's picture

Man, if you read this, reply back. There are some good people in this world. Some people that have been where you are and would like to help.

d_senti's picture

John Wayne, as this is an internet message board, it's sometimes hard to tell whether or not someone is being serious. But if you are, then don't do it. You may not have any present hope in the current system (and for that I can hardly blame you) but there are other options. My worst-case scenario consideration is to fall back to friends and family, together in a household, and spread the costs of living. You can form a community, or join one, that can provide support, and you wouldn't have to play the game anymore.

There's also the hope that things will, finally, start to change. We have dark days ahead of us, but who knows what will come out of that? You and all of the informed out there have a part to play in that, maybe even a big part.

My generation has a lot of problems. There's no denying it. And I worry that it will, quite frankly, turn to communism as the answer to our problems, on account of its sense of entitlement and hatred of perceived capitalism. But there is an element to our character which is different than any other generation since WW2. We are ready for big changes. We are ready to watch the world burn to end the current corruption (at least for a time). This is why we see OWS, the Tea Party, Anonymous, and whatever comes next.

The system that is irredeemably corrupt will not survive our coming to adulthood. Some new corruption may replace it, but something better might too. And we need men like you in the fight to come, whether it be ideological or more literal. So don't give up; realize you're a soldier in a war of ideas. You are among the casualties of this war. But you can still see it through, and help to make a better world come out of it.

Element's picture

To that I would add that you can also learn, to your ecstatic delight, of things you never suspected were possible, and real.

Don't do it.

Curse if you must, scream and demand better treatment, and a just world, if you must, in fact, UNRESERVEDLY DEMAND IT

But please don't waste yourself, just because of the venal stupidity has crushed your lesser part. There is a greater inside you, and you must let it come out.

I wish I could make this less glib, but have faith ... not religious faith in a nebulous arcane figure or belief ... but faith in life's very process, and why you're part of this life.

It's your greatest gift, use it, anyway you wish, just use it, and let it use you.

Coldfire's picture

Everyone has their limit of suffering. But think about suicide from a different angle. Imagine you killed yourself and life just went on for those around you. I'm not saying this to be mean, but to encourage you to get out of your own head. Probably the best thing you can do right now is get to a doctor for some Prozac or similar SSRI. It really helps. Life can be beautiful. Don't let it go.

tgeorge's picture


Reading your post, has disturbed me beyond words.

Many reading this have to feel helpless, in realizing there is a chance you will (or have) followed through, and there is nothing we can collectively do.

There are highs and lows in life, very few things last forever, they get better and worse and better again and worse.

Nothing is certain.

Some things are irreversible. We hope you are reading the posts, and you are ok. There will be many bad days ahead either way, mixed with some good.

I am more than willing to help in any way, if you want, just ask....




I think I need to buy a gun's picture

Are you young? Good health? Physically Fit? Get in a car or bus and drive to North  and South Dakota. Find work in the Balkin oil share area, there are people sleeping in their cars there. I'm not saying sleep in a car there but my understanding is there are jobs there. Most americans won't do it, I have a business most people would not do, thats why its partially sucessful. But if you agree to get your hands dirty for 4-5 years by then things will be a little better. If you don't like the cold go to texas and try there. Remember you don't need a cell phone, you really don't need a car, you don't need ONE FUCKIN thing except food, temporary shelter and work. Alot of these jobs are 80K a year.......If you can get dirty for a few years it feels great rather than pushing paper around......McDonalds in Balkin area starts at 15 plus an hour......

if your on oxy get go get clean for a month useing the "system"

d_senti's picture

I live in eastern ND and I can tell you that they are hiring by the boatload out west. My cousins and aunt live in Williston, and the town has literally doubled in size in the last 3 years from all the people hired to do work out there. I'd do it myself if I could, because it pays great. I have a buddy who went out there in 04 and has ridden the boom afterward; he makes 70k a year as a high school graduate now.

Cost of living is also lower and we have the lowest unemployment in the nation, and in the paper nearly every day I see job openings for most trade skills if you have one. And this is in a city of 60k. The options are there; look online, apply for some jobs and tell them you're moving into the area. Heck, if it's nearby, You can come over for a barbecue. Life's not all bad.

I think I need to buy a gun's picture

one more thing, most people are broke, even the ones living in the big homes. My neighbors are broke my friends are broke all they have is debt.  Life is what you make of it. I have a house and I haven't contributed one fuckin thing to this economy is 4 years except for my kids events. Otherwise I sit here do my business and watch tv staring at the fuckin wall and I'm fuckin happy supporting the precious metals dealers. I won't even drive the car thats cash to buy metals.  The system is definitely stacked against the common person even if you can't break into a fortune 500 company and kiss ass for 10 years to become CEO assistant you can go have a life near a mining town, oil town or agriculture town. Simple man. Keep it simple and you need to get the fuck off the OXY if your not taking it for pain that will not help you pick a new location to resume a new life, new people, they win another fuckin suicide if you do it and that pisses me off. Do you know how many murder suicides there are everyday in this country because of this banking cartel. Fuck them. Use google and find the location where you are headed. I'm telling you Dakotas............

quacker's picture

Yes but the banksters are going to keep on robbing even if you are gone.

Think about US!

Don't leave us here to fight them alone. You're an intelligent person, we could use you in a fight. Hang around and help us PLEASE! We are stronger with you than without you.

dalkrin's picture

Most days we readers and posters on this blog are able to put a humorous, cynical spin on the fundamentally serious subject matter that so affects our lives, but which we have so very little power to influence.  We try to joke about it, so we don't go insane.

In this instance, I'd like to step out and make a direct human appeal to you that you ought to refrain from ending it.

About 8 years ago, I was in a similar situation.  I had been spiraling downwards for some months, and finally reached a point where I had given up on the life meme.  Thankfully my chosen method was not violent, and I pulled myself out in time. 

Life has since improved dramatically for me in the past years.  My once solid arguments against living were found to be flawed.

I realize your situation seems bleak.  I know I was in a world of pain and ennui after having spent only 6 months jobless and discouraged, while also in a different country. 

Seeing a doctor/psychologist would be best, but in the meantime you have people here you can turn to.

If you see no other options at present, be homeless, use food banks, but just survive.  Make your way to OWS, you will find sympathy and warmth to your plight.  Don't let the banks win:  they are conducting both economic and psychological crimes against the remainder of us. 

You have intrinsic worth, you are not your job.

X.inf.capt's picture

yeah, its worth it....

ive learned from zh....and from you...

are you going to deny people, the ones who dont know what its all about, the truth....

you are not alone...were here....and we need to learn more....

dont deny it, dont cheat yourself....and dont cheat us....

yeah, its tough, but your tougher than this...

besides...its in the end game, its almost over..

i know it, as you do, just walk alittle further...

lets see it together...

FrankDrakman's picture

Agree with this, and the many posts above it.

Get on youtube, and search for "New Radicals You Get What You Give", and listen, really listen to it.

I've had my moments of despair, too, and I find music - everything from Beethoven's 3rd to Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros "Johnny Appleseed" - restores my soul, and gives me strength for another day. Sometimes you need a little anger to rev you up - "Adam Raised A Cain" by the Boss, or "Know Your Rights" by the Clash will help there. Sometimes you need a little perspective - "Turn, Turn, Turn" by the Byrds, or "Do You Realize" by the Flaming Lips. Sometimes you need a little spur - "Freedom of Choice" by Devo, or "Walk On" by Neil Young. You can find all these free on youtube, and then follow the links to related music. I promise, in an hour, your dark mood will pass.

Good luck to you, my friend.

mephisto808's picture

My brother, do not do it. Stay here and fight the good fight.

Mr Kurtz's picture

You gotta hang in their brother, we've all contemplated traveling that long lonesome road at one time or another. On a lighter side, what better reason to hang in there then to occasionally "eyeball" the ta-tas on vic vinegar's avatar!

e-recep's picture

Join the Occupy movement.

bankonzhongguo's picture

College is worth it if you can figure out how to do it without borrowing money.  With a wife and kid in these times its going to be very tough.  In the 1960s a family could live well off the wages of one working adult.  Today you need 2 people just to make ends meet.  You should consider moving into to somebody's parent's home.  3 generations under one roof will be the new (old) normal.

These days it seems everyone has a bachelor's degree.  In terms of education, one needs a masters or professional degree just to set themselves apart from the pack.  Some of the comments about cpa are on the money.  I took all my extra cpa course work via ucla online.  got to the end and then decided that cpa was not for me - too restrictive. get a bootleg copy of quickbooks and be a subbookkeepper on craiglist.

Nobody gets rich working for someone else.  If you can swing college, great.  But understand that going to college in North Dakota will be like becoming World famous in Poland.  Its not Oxford baby.  Outside of ND, your degree is not going to mean much to anyone. Skills do matter.  Think about being a locksmith. It dove tails with your guard card.  The fascist apocalypse needs a few good men.  Keep a clean record and the world is yours.  DHS on the Canadian border.     A few years of apprentice work and you get a van and a bond and hit the high road.  If times get tough you can always be a thief.

d_senti's picture

Locksmith isn't a bad idea. I'll look into it.

My concern with the piece of paper isn't about acquiring the skills. I'm a reasonably intelligent person with a strong motivation to provide for my family, I got a perfect 36 on the math section of my ACT, took all the advanced classes in high school, have a small amount of bookkeeping experience...the skills aren't an issue. The issue is the piece of paper, which in my experience is seen by your typical employer as a plus. Why, I have no idea, as many people finish college without having a friggin clue about how to work, think critically, learn new skills, operate independently, etc. But there it is. They want a piece of paper, so if I have to jump through that hoop, then I will.

I'm not on the best of terms with my immediate family, and my wife's family lives many states away. I have very close friends, but I wouldn't impose upon them unless it was absolutely necessary. We could cram more people in here though; I've suggested renting our spare room out to the missus, but she'd rather not if we can avoid it. I suspect, like many, that it may eventually come to that (moving in with friends/family) for many/most of us, at which time I will do so.

I know a degree from ND isn't worth much, but it's either a mentality issue or a liability issue for employers. Could save myself a lot of effort and lie, but I don't lie. My record is squeaky clean (never even a speeding ticket). I wouldn't steal either, with the sole possible exception of food from some dictator-type when we're starving. Yes, by the way, I was a boy scout.

Locksmith matches up with machinist suggested above in that they are useful skills in any scenario. That is very appealing to me. ND will never have a shortage of food if we aren't overrun by marauding hordes, so a tradable skill would be a major boon.

GoNavy's picture

In heaven's name, why are you "barring TEOTWAWKI"?

Seems like a bad assumption to me so long as Barry O'bamanation is running thigs....

d_senti's picture

Haha, I'm not barring TEOTWAWKI. I see it as a real possibility. I also see it as a possibility that in some areas, things may be (relatively) normal-ish, with life operating on a local level. Any skillset useful at that time means I'm interested. So lawyer/art major is out, but locksmith/machinist is in. My goal is to plan two lives which overlap as much as possible: my "depression" life where things are semi-normal, and my TEOTWAWKI life where I stockpile, prep, and learn useful skills.

BAU life isn't a legit possibility in my mind anymore.

zerotosixty's picture

Don't do it...  what ever you think you'l pay when you are done will more than double if it's not paid off within 5 yrs. This is speaking from experience.

GoatETF's picture

but I'm partially disabled and so that makes those things very difficult.

So what type of diability do you have? Something that makes longer, physical work hard...problems with lifting. Some more detail might help with some direction on blue collar work, if it is an option.

Many good recommendations in the follow-up comments and I would agree with the ones that encourage you that some courses might give you the necessary training without the full degree. No degree here but work as a consultant in I.T. Went to a 6 month intense I.T. training that I didn't finish because it was apparent continuing was not going to help. Applied for jobs and had accepted a position within a week. By living extremely frugally, made enough in my first 6 months to pay off school.

Have you considered something outside the box? For example there may be needs in your community that are not being met currently and require minimal training. If you're looking for a job then you go the route everyone else is going but if you look for opportunities around you they abound if you keep your eyes open. One example that seems to be prevelant in many places is a shortage of people to work with geriatrics on things such as computer training, caring in-home care, etc. My wife gets offered a p/t job at least every 4 months from people during her meals on wheels deliveries. In our case we found demand is far outstripping supply at the farmer's markets around us so we've been raising things on our acreage that people need most and are getting paid top $$ for doing it. At the rate we're going I'll probably be walking away from my job in the next 5 years. We're building it slow and debt free which takes longer but my risks are much lower.

kall's picture

You may have some options but you'll have to think them all through to fit your situation. I'll tell you what I did to avoid a student loan: I applied for an online mba degree and now I am about to get it. After these years I don't regret my decision, in fact I am quite happy that I found the solution. Something tells me that the next years will register an exponential growth of the online education options.

A82EBA's picture

I recommend the opposite. I'm in my late 40s, went to work as an electrician's apprentice 20 yrs ago and have worked as journeyman electrician since. Just now taking courses to get Electrical Engineer B.S. so in two yrs I'll have 20 yrs real-world experience AND a brand-new up-to-date relevant degree as a 50 yr old. Good luck to you.

legal eagle's picture

The party will happen with hyperinflation.......when the debts are essentially wiped away because of government incompetence.

What is $200K in debt when a loaf of bread costs that much?

Get the loans, get the education, nobody can take the education away from you!

Ahmeexnal's picture

It's not education. It's conditioning.

legal eagle's picture

It's both. If you have a curious mind attending university can be an intellectual renaissance.

aleksbel's picture

but what if someone owes 4 loafs of bread?