Thursday, March 27, 2008

Is Massive Student Debt Really Worth It?

Miriam Salpeter at Keppie Careers responded to my last post about working too much with the observation that those leaving school these days with huge student loans to repay ($80,000-$200,000) may be part of the reason people work so hard. I have to admit that with that kind of debt dogging me, I'd probably work too many hours, too.

While some top tier schools are reducing the cost for low- and middle-income students, the fact remains that many families feel pressured to get their children into expensive universities in order to give that child a headstart on a career. But with tough economic times comes the reality that there are fewer loans for those willing to go into such debt.

Still, there are a number of successful people who don't go to Ivy League schools, or even attend a university. Look at Harvard dropout Bill Gates.

So, I guess I have a few questions: Do young people today really need to put themselves in a financial sinkhole to attend a top university? Can they be successful attending a less prestigious school? Or, is a college education even really necessary for success anymore? Will the day come when companies don't care about a university degree?


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