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Old 10-08-2014, 12:53 PM
2,702 posts, read 3,447,377 times
Reputation: 4514


Never been to college and I am retired at age 55......So tell me about not being able to survive without a college education....

Also many many kids are NOT college material... Nor should a person have children and raise them just to be able to send them to college..

People have children because they want to.. Not because they want to send them to school...
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:10 PM
Location: Central Texas
13,720 posts, read 24,649,142 times
Reputation: 9178
Originally Posted by stellastar2345 View Post
I read this article
Fewer parents helping to pay for college - Jun. 26, 2014

I don't know much about their sources or anything, but it's saying only 77% of parents plan to help their kids out with college.

Why have a kid if you don't want to (or have the means to) help the kid succeed?

Say what you like about college, but good luck moving anywhere without a college degree.

Even a masters degree is becoming a pre req for a lot of good jobs.
Which jobs require a masters degree?

That article is shallow. It doesn't get into many of the reasons for a SMALL change (81% to 77%) in the data.
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:24 PM
Location: Las Vegas, NV
2,761 posts, read 2,257,863 times
Reputation: 4794
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:51 PM
Location: Near Sacramento
627 posts, read 315,523 times
Reputation: 1759
I had my way paid and took it for granted. I didn't end up finishing college. After I left, I had to grow up and I did. I would like to help my children to the extent that I can. But, I believe they also need to take some of the responsibility and then they will appreciate it and work that much harder. Often if you have no skin in the game, it is too easy to walk away.

cd :O)
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Old 10-08-2014, 03:17 PM
Location: Washington state
4,704 posts, read 2,314,925 times
Reputation: 13763
Originally Posted by Mattie View Post
If your parents needed financial help down the road, then they didn't really have the funds to put their kids through college.
No, they didn't need financial help at the time when I wanted to go to college. They were well set in what my dad was doing. He was a professional pilot.

But years later, he lost his job and was having a hard time finding another one. He only completed 8th grade (he learned to fly in the armed services). They couldn't sell the house. My mother had never worked. There were health issues. They needed help until my dad found another flying job.

I am not saying that parents need to pay for ALL college related things, but a helping hand is much appreciated. Look at it this way: the longer you drag college out, the more expensive it gets. If you could finish a 4 year degree in 4 to 6 years, think how much better off you would be than taking 10 years to finish it. When I finally got out of banking and decided to do something else, I must have filled out between 200 and 500 applications. At least half of them wanted a degree, whether it had something to do with the job or not.

The bottom line is education helps ALL of us. If you make more money, you pay more taxes, taxes that go to help our infrastructure and schools, to name a couple. Yes, there are a lot of people who can rise high in their profession without college, but a lot of other professions require a degree. I happen to like math and physics. Do you seriously think I'm going to get a job teaching high school physics without a degree? And we're screaming about how there aren't enough math and science teachers in school. I am one who would love to do that job. The only thing holding me back is the money for tuition and books. Think of that the next time your kids can't get a proper science education in a public school.

At the very least, we should have trade schools so kids can learn a trade to work at. You can't even volunteer to be a cop anymore and expect the department to train you. Many cities require you to attend, full time, a several months long training police academy that you pay for. Then you throw your hat into the ring and see if that gets you hired. If it doesn't, you're out time and money. No wonder our society is so screwed up.
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Old 10-08-2014, 03:44 PM
9,056 posts, read 6,736,126 times
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I agree that it's goid for kids to bear some responsibility. But what that looks like depends entirely on the kid.

Some people are able to divide their focus between different tasks and excel (or are competent, at least) at all.

Some people are not, however. Some just aren't wired to give 100% to different things at once - for example if they are not good at compartmentalizing work when they're at school, or if they worry or can't focus on school because they feel overwhelmed at work.

If you have a personality that's able to handle different responsibilities throughout the day and not let either suffer, then that's one thing. But for some, purely trying to prove a point by having them work while going to school may have the unintended consequence of having them fail at both.

Especially if you're in a heavy discipline that requires some time outside of class to think on a purely intellectual level. You need downtime and a quite mind to be creative.

I think you really have to weigh the options and not assume that requiring a student to work as a character building exercise is the right course for every personality.

A lot of people here have made a full ride available to their kids and that hasn't meant they've turned out ungrateful or irresponsible. Sometimes people need to devote their whole being to one thing in order to do it justice.
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Old 10-08-2014, 04:04 PM
938 posts, read 1,221,801 times
Reputation: 1418
Not everyone who goes to college wants to work in finance, engineering, etc. I believe it would be a very boring world if no one cared about other things.

Our daughter consciously chose a field that she is passionate about but it does not pay big bucks. Her undergraduate was a free ride on scholarships because she had great grades and test scores. Even her grad school has been mostly paid for through her stipend, based on her high undergrad gpa and GRE scores. What little she needs to pay comes from her own savings account that she started when she started petsitting when she was 12. She has saved most of her paychecks over the years. The key to that was we always had an extra car in the family (we paid maintenance and insurance, she put gas in when she used it, and it was a privelege to use it...not an expectation) and we gave her a yearly clothing allowance when she was old enough to do her own shopping. These items were not extravagant. The car was a station wagon with over 100k miles and the clothing allowance still required her to kick in her own money if she wanted those designer jeans or boots. She learned that the car costs to drive so she took public transportation when she was doing her undergrad and lived at home. She had to work a few extra hours if she wanted those boots. She also paid for her move across country for grad school, furnished her own apartment (thrift stores and dumpster diving when someone is evicted has furnished her place almost for nothing), and pays all of her own bills. Now living away in grad school, she has had roommates and it's amazing their lack of economics...and most of them are business majors! Her roommates are always throwing away perfectly good food (they won't eat leftovers) or things they have let go moldy in the fridge. The roommates don't understand the wear and tear of taking your car to campus every day vs taking the city bus that stops right outside their apartment, free with your campus ID. They don't understand that every time you bump the AC up one degree you are adding 5% to the utility bill. There have been quite a few kitchen table discussions with roomies. She has settled on telling them her max allowance for utilities and if they want to spend more, they pay for it. She chips in for cable tv since roomies want it, comes packaged with the internet. But if someone watches a pay per view movie or sport, they pay for it. She buys her own groceries, does her own cooking, and lines up her meals in the fridge on her shelf.

So now with one year left til her masters degree is finished, she still has 1/2 of her savings left. She has not done any semesters abroad and has remained a full time student through every summer. Although she has done volunteer work in her field she is lacking those internships. Since she needs some minor medical surgery, she will be moving back home after graduation. She will spend those 3-6 months working to pad the savings while recuperating. She will have plenty of time to choose internships carefully and all the time she needs for submitting thoughtful applications. The plan is for her to go off for the unpaid internships, possibly abroad. At the age of 24 she will have attained a masters degree and done an internship or two, have plenty of money in the bank, and be ready to start her grand adventure in the field she is passionate about. It can be done, and it can be done without debt or relying on someone else to pay your way.

I don't believe that everyone needs to go to college. Where would we be without plumbers, mechanics, electricians, fire fighters, etc when we need them? I believe that we should adopt an apprentice program more like the European countries so that those not cut out for college have plenty of opportunities besides flipping burgers.

We also need to make college more affordable for students in the middle class. Student loan debt is going to haunt this country for the next few generations. Many people will be paying on that debt for their entire lives and it will stifle the housing market and many other economic markers. We are already at the point that some folks are having loan payments taken out of their social security benefits. Sad. When I looked at the total charges, before the scholarships were applied, I wondered how the average family with a few kids in school could possibly afford it without loans. We live in a middle class neighborhood of teachers, nurses, accountants, etc. There is not big money here. Yet we all want the best for our kids.
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Old 10-08-2014, 04:52 PM
Location: Colorado
9,834 posts, read 6,305,324 times
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I didn't have time to read all of the pages of the thread (sorry!) but I have to say, I feel a little bitterness on the topic.

It's like...I got no help from anyone, I was out of the nest and on my own at 18. My first kid wasn't planned (protection failed) but it helped me grow up and find focus, being a parent. I didn't want him to be an only child so I had his brother shortly after, and then that was it. Permanent measures were taken to prevent more.

I paid for my own college, and ran up debt doing so, but I make my payments and the burden isn't too heavy. I didn't finish my degree, because my husband joined the Service and it was just too freaking hard to raise our 2 kids more or less alone, and work full time, and so on...besides which I got a great job, so I figured I was fine without the completed degree. Point being, we started out VERY poor and climbed into the middle class with no substantial help from anyone.

Now I'm supposed to take care of my parents, my kids, pay for my kids' very expensive musical instruments, braces, pay for their college, somehow save for retirement (because no one helped me when I was young, nor will they help me when I'm old, but somehow I'm supposed to support EVERYONE ELSE.)

So no, I am NOT saving for their college. They each get a year and a half free from my husband's GI Bill that we signed over to them. After that it's on them. And yes, I would rather save for retirement than pay for their school, but at this point even that is a pipe dream because I'm in debt from having to help my Mother with her problems and my kids with their instruments, braces, etc. I'll be lucky if I'm ever able to save anything for anything.

However, in terms of FACTS and not FEELINGS or OPINIONS, I seem to recall that on the FAFSA (Federal Student Aid forms) one is required to report the parents' income and if they have anything, "assistance" from them is factored into what federal aid the student can get regardless of whether the parent actually intends to help or not. In fact I had a friend who saw a student financial counselor with their daughter, and said person told her to take out a second mortgage on her home to pay for daughter's schooling. Um....NO. The good news is that once a person is 24, they are independent of their parents in the eyes of the system and don't have to report parental income & assets anymore.

As others have mentioned...my kids do have other options when it comes to financing an education. But if I don't look to my own future, I can't count on anyone to help me with that.

EDIT: It is worth mentioning that my Mom is a perpetual student on loans she'll never be able to pay back. She has a worthless Masters in Environmental Science and no job prospects because no work history. She's been treating her loans like welfare checks. No internships, no resume. I, on the other hand, have only some college, no degree, but it was in Finance/Accounting, and I have great professional experience. And a couple years ago when I moved, I got a fantastic job that pays significantly more than my last one I left 4 months before that...my employment prospects are much better than hers. Turns out...a fancy degree isn't worth much without job experience to go with it.
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Old 10-08-2014, 05:59 PM
Location: Tucson for awhile longer
8,874 posts, read 12,943,330 times
Reputation: 28962
Originally Posted by Ohky0815 View Post
I dont plan to help any of my children through college. I dont even know if they want to go, need to go or if i could help them when the time comes.
I can't begin to imagine if that comment is a bomb intended to get a reaction from this crowd, or if you actually do feel that way. If the second is the case, I implore you to be a better parent and establish some communication with your offspring.

I am not of the mind that people are bad parents if they can't AFFORD higher education for their children. I also don't believe children are OWED extravagant expenditures from their parents so they are set up for life with no effort on their part. But I do think that many people posting here are woefully ignorant of what it takes for people to get a college education TODAY.

I, too, am of a generation when it was possible for people to work, and attend school, and pay for their own educations without taking out hundreds of thousands of dollars in student loans. It was hard, but it could be done. That's NOT the way it is today. In one generation, college tuition and tech school costs have risen to such heights that the way it was so often done in my generation is virtually impossible today. Young people need to be aware of the fact that even if their parents DID save carefully, there might not be enough money put away to pay for their college. And parents need to be aware that it is quite improbable today that anyone can get a higher education on their own without taking on huge debt. Even if a person works full-time and gets scholarships or financial assistance, that's usually not enough to cover all costs.

Why do you think so many private companies are venturing into the "education business" today? Because it's become OK today in our corporatist American culture to rip people off to the point that in addition to companies supplying a degree, they can make a tidy profit off students seeking higher education or technical training.

I had my hair cut recently by a young woman who had thousands of dollars in debt that she took on going to beauty school because her parents wouldn't send her to college. She couldn't even imagine paying for a bachelor's degree, so she decided on a "career" of cutting hair because that would incur less debt and enable her to get a job. But it will be decades before her debt is paid off and until then she sees no possibility that she will be able to do normal young adult things like live without a roommate and later buy a home. Young people's inability to get mortgages because of their education debt has already wreaked havoc on the housing market and had a negative impact on new car sales. What other things will be out of reach to young adults if their high school diploma does not make them employable and their parents just cavalierly refuse to help them with their education?

One other piece of misinformation has been repeated here. Bill and Melinda Gates have never said they aren't leaving their children ANY money. Nor did Warren Buffett. In fact, his offspring are already middle-aged adults and they are quite well off. His daughter Susan already runs her own foundation for underprivileged children in Omaha, so she ain't broke. These billionaires only said they aren't putting their entire humongous portfolios into trust for their children. Some sources have speculated that the three Gates children are expecting to get about $10 million each once they have completed their educations that Mom and Dad will pay for.
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Old 10-08-2014, 07:19 PM
12,404 posts, read 9,225,523 times
Reputation: 8868
Originally Posted by stellastar2345 View Post
I read this article
Fewer parents helping to pay for college - Jun. 26, 2014

I don't know much about their sources or anything, but it's saying only 77% of parents plan to help their kids out with college.

Why have a kid if you don't want to (or have the means to) help the kid succeed?

Say what you like about college, but good luck moving anywhere without a college degree.

Even a masters degree is becoming a pre req for a lot of good jobs.
Is this really that surprising, given that something like a third of the country is on government assistance?

Hmmmm, maybe the other 23% can't afford it.
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