A friend recently revealed to me what he owes in student loans. The number was staggering. In his early 20s, he is not likely to ever pay this obscene amount off in his lifetime.
Once upon a time in America, it was possible to work one’s way through school, to graduate with little or no debt, and then to put that education to work building a sustainable life. The payoff to these Untied States of America: More scientists, more engineers, more mathematicians, more inventors, more innovators, an overall better brain pool.
Nowadays, all higher education seems to be good at creating is a new batch of people who are utterly enslaved by their debt. And, perhaps, another batch of people who might have in another generation have gone on to higher education who now take a look at the costs and benefits and go “naaaaaaah.”
Part of the cause of this is America’s new grounded belief that there is nothing worth anything but the dollar, and that the greater benefit of investment in infrastructure is folly. That is no different here. Tuition costs and the stranglehold that the lenders strive to put on our students does little more than to chip away at the infrastructure an educated populace provides and to create a new class of enslaved people. I do not understand how this country expects to have a future if it does not see the value in investing in education.
Here’s one woman’s story about struggling with student debt. She writes now that she’s ready to walk away. It’s a good read that really brings this pressing issue to light.