U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Parenting
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
View Poll Results: Is a parent obligated-- do they HAVE to pay for son's college?
Yes -a parent is responsible for these costs as much as possible 29 17.68%
No- It would be nice if they helped but not mandatory 135 82.32%
Voters: 164. You may not vote on this poll

Reply Start New Thread
Old 08-12-2010, 10:29 AM
Location: Denver area
20,939 posts, read 21,583,429 times
Reputation: 34460


Nothing wrong with starting out at a CC - but do your research WRT credits transferring. This can be a good choice but, like anything else, you need to have a well thought out plan and have done your homework for it to work well. Transferring credits can be a problem even if transferring between respected colleges and universities.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Old 08-12-2010, 10:43 AM
15,056 posts, read 16,334,523 times
Reputation: 14696
Originally Posted by StarryEyedSurprise View Post
Are you kidding me? You sound just like my MIL (and are probably comparable in age). Do you really think you can compare your personal college situation with what kids are facing today? "I did have it easier to an extent in that scholarships were more abundant when I went to school. However, I took difficult classes, maintained straight As, had excellent SAT scores, etc. " Yeah, okay. Not only are scholarships scarce, but schools are more than 10x the price! And really, working only 20 hours a week in your final two years... yeah, sorry. That's easy. Kids these days are balancing two FULL TIME workloads, and STILL having to take out loans.

And then you go on to say "I was the first in my family to go to college and I did have a free ride at a small liberal arts college because my high school counsellor graduated from that school and convinced them they wanted me."

A free ride. That's fabulous, really. Even the valedictorian at my private high school didn't get a free ride to her college (considering she was female, and black, and qualified for aid due to that, plus academic scholarship, she still paid $15k a year). How easy it must be to take education costs for granted when it doesn't hit you in the wallet.

Stay inexpensive for the first two years and then finance your good college for your junior and senior years. Keep things in perspective.

Horrible advice. I transferred after my freshman year at a prestigious college - which is pretty much just core courses. THREE WHOLE CLASSES transferred out of TEN, and I kept the same degree. What a waste of money. Colleges aren't in it to give you a degree in their name when they aren't the ones getting paid for it. I hear this story all the time - someone takes a year or two at a community college - then they get screwed when they transfer to the college that needs to be seen on a resume in order to be taken seriously in this economy. Then you end up being the perpetual student, with tons of loans, and your parents complaining about how you aren't paying them enough money to live at their house.

I still stand by what I said earlier - no, please, don't feel obligated to help your kids with college. But don't be surprised when you get the exact same treatment when your 401K doesn't see you through retirement.
The junior and senior year of HIGH SCHOOL, not junior and senior year of college. Full time in HS maintaining As in AP courses and getting above 700 on each part of the SAT as well as working from 4 PM to midnight 3 days a week and working Saturdays was *easy*

No employer cares even in this economy where your Freshman and Sophomore courses were taken as long as you have a degree from a solid university. If you take the right core courses, btw, all of them should transfer. You do have to work on figuring out which university you want to go to and what courses they will accept. You also have to maintain good grades in the community college classes.

Schools are NOT 10 times the price either. They are more expensive, but not anywhere like 10 times the price. There are also still GOOD small colleges that are less expensive. Not everyone has to go to MIT or Harvard and there are good jobs around for those that don't. Much will depend on your major of course.

Believe it or not there are still places where if you have good SATs and good grades, you can get a free ride. If you are a National Merit Finalist, you can go to several colleges free. If you live in Arizona, provided that you have exceeded testing standards, you can receive a tuition waiver to attend the University of Arizona. The same is true of Arizona State. Alfred University in upstate New York (where my dh and I went) offers free tuition and board to students with excellent academics at the State College part. (Alfred has both a private and a State component - the engineering school is affiliated with the SUNY). Aside from the schools that still have scholarships (and this takes some digging to figure out where you might be able to go), there are also schools that will do work study programs like Berea College. Did you know that if you are accepted to Stanford and your family makes less than $100,000 per year, you can go free? There are also location based scholarships and grants. Minnesota residents can take advantage of the University of Minnesota’s free tuition program.

My parents were not even in the middle class. My dad worked at a factory, was laid off and then became a school janitor. My mom was a SAHM until my dad lost his job, then went back to work in the school cafeteria. Don't whine to me about your life now. Let's see, did you scrimp and save by wearing hand me down clothing from your cousins? Did you forego restaurant meals because you could not afford to go out to eat? Did you not have cable because you wanted to save up for college? (We did not even have a tv, but nowadays I am sure you grew up with cable tv and a computer at home).

There are colleges you can go to. You may have never heard their names, but that doesn't mean you won't get a good education there. And it doesn't mean you won't get a job unless you are going for certain kinds of degrees. You may have to change fields from your preferred one though.

Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-12-2010, 11:09 AM
Location: Frankfurt, Germany
799 posts, read 1,558,410 times
Reputation: 403
Here is a great program that my stepsister was able to use in Georgia

GAcollege411 - Georgia's HOPE Scholarship Program Overview

AND it is not dependent upon your income bc her father is filthy rich!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-12-2010, 11:30 AM
14,764 posts, read 33,706,594 times
Reputation: 14225
Being younger than most that are posting on this thread, I'd like to put some things into perspective. I attended Boston College. I was fortunate in that I recieved a sports scholarship that covered my tuition costs, this is the only way that I could afford to attend the school. When I went (98-02) the cost of one years tuition was approximately $20,000 with another $12,000 or so thrown on top for room and board, total cost $32,000 per year. During my time there, tuition expenses increased to $24,000 or ~17% over the course of four years, room and board remained the same. Total cost of a non-subsidized education at BC would run you about $136,000 not counting books, fees and speding money. Today that same cost per year has increased to $52,000 (tuition + room and board) and four years would cost you in the neighborhood of $220,000, or about a 40% increase in the span of 8 years.

Again, I was able to go do to sports, but that also put a bit of a crunch on my classes and I ended up taking summer school classes at a state school in NJ that had to be approved by BC. This allowed me to avoid attending an extra semester that I would have had to take out loans for or pay out of pocket.

As it was between my parents and I (parents are decidedly low-middle class, my father was a maintenance man after retiring from the Army and my mom is a school secretary), we accumulated about $50k in loans that we have just finished paying off. The deal was that I loaned the maximum I could take and they would do the rest. Conversely it would have cost me about what it cost for room and board at BC to attend an OK state school and a little more for a better one.

I have three children. I would love for my kids to have the same level of education that I did. However, there is no way it will happen without scholarships and loans on both our part. If the current increases hold steady a year at BC will cost upwards of $75,000 by the time my kids are ready for college which would equal about $300,000 for a 4 year degree.

My wife and I have been saving money since the kids were born. We actively save money for each of them on a monthly basis, kick in a large portion of our tax return and also have saved every dime they've ever gotten for christening, birthday, etc. and their grandparents contribute as well. All told my kids will have about $75,000 by the time they are 18 based on our current savings plans and returns. That will buy them exactly one year at a school like Boston College. If we are lucky it might buy them 4 years at an average state school, or maybe 2 or 3 at a good one. The rest will be on us, or them.

Given the ridiculously rapid climb in the price of higher education, I think parents have a duty to do what they can for their children, but it is virtually impossible for average middle class families with multiple children to be able to afford to pay for complete college educations for all their children.

Yes, there are ways to go about cutting these expenses by attending CC's and cheaper schools to earn credits. This is good for a kid to find out what they want, but if you aren't careful many of those credits would be wasted and may not transfer. For instance, there were only 5 schools in all of NJ that BC would accept credits from universally and none of them were community colleges. There were a few others they would accept credits from in particular course areas (again no CC's), but you then had to take a comprehensive exam to prove mastery of the material to BC's level before they would transfer. So, this plan isn't a slam dunk.

If my kids want the same level of education that I received, they will have no choice but to work hard, earn scholarships and most likely take out loans. Once they have exhausted those efforts, I would be open to filling in the gap as my parents did for me. My wife and I will have done the best job we could providing them with nest egg money, but that is all we can do without jeopardizing our future.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-12-2010, 03:24 PM
7,924 posts, read 8,259,393 times
Reputation: 24797
I am the parent of an eighteen year old son starting college here in Utah at the University of Utah. My son worked hard and obtained a little better than a B+ average in high school. He also received credits for many concurrent college enrollment classes. Utah is not among states that have highest college tuition--not by a longshot. His grades and ACT scores were good, but short of the level that it would have taken for him to earn a scholarship.

Even so, the expense of sending him to school is quite significant. I estimate that expense to be exactly 10 X what it was for me thirty years ago. I think the issue that most of us are failing to address here is this:

1. Why do we the taxpayers who support publicly funded colleges and universities not demand fewer tuition increases?

2. Why do we stand by and act like our state supported colleges and universities should be able to charge any amount of tuition they deem fit?

3. Shouldn't we require institutions to have fewer administrators who earn $200K a year and slow down big ticket items like building construction?

I feel like the guy who said "I'm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take it any more".

College tuition increases do not merely reflect the rate of inflation. Rather, they have gone up at a rate that is actually greater than the rate at which health care costs have gone up over the last thirty years.

College Tuition: Inflation or Hyperinflation? « Satyagraha – Cultural Psycholo

College tuition has increased at a rate 3 X the overall rate of inflation during the last 30 years and it shows no sign of changing.

If we don't fix this fundamental problem no one other than the very richest people in America will ultimately be able to afford college. This would be a crying shame because according to government statistics there is nothing more associated with success in life than education. Those with a high school diploma earn more than those without one. Those with a BS degree earn more than those with a diploma. Finally, those with an MS or advanced degree earn more than those with a BS degree do.

The problem here is being mistated. Its not about lazy kids who won't work. Its not about parents who see no responsibility to help with college. The problem is that we have allowed college to become too expensive.

Education Pays: Income by Education Level (2009 Update) « Soc101
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-12-2010, 05:52 PM
2,107 posts, read 4,198,479 times
Reputation: 3382
It's all about supply and demand.

In the 80s, when I graduated high school, I would guess that half the kids didn't go on to college. They got jobs in civil service, offices, or whatever.

Then we got to a generation of kids that were told they have to go to college. It was their ticket to the good life. So enrollment in college skyrocketed and therefore the prices shot up with that demand.

It's really no different than the person who bought their house for $150k 20 years ago and stuck a shingle out five years ago with a $400k price tag and broke open the champagne when they sold the place. They felt entitled to cash in on the demand for housing and didn't care that the people buying it made $60k a year. The buyer's loan was the buyer's problem; not the seller's. They got their money. Colleges have no concern whatsoever with the debt that students/families take on. They just want the check made out to them and paying it back is not their problem.

Colleges with increased enrollment have to build additional buildings and classroom space to accommodate the influx so tuition goes up. I'm sure tuition also went up because the colleges knew that people would pay it no matter what it was. And they did. People just took more loans, mortgaged their homes, did whatever they had to to pay these overinflated prices so their kids could get go to college.

There's not much of a solution. People will not tell their kids not to go to college. Those that do will lose because more people will say "Well, less competition in the job market for my kid if enrollment drops."

The only solution I see going forward is the same situation as the housing market. People will just "walk away" from their loans or demand some type of reduction or forgiveness of them the same way some homeowners are. If millions just stopped paying, collections would take forever or at some point they would settle with the student for a lesser amount.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-12-2010, 07:12 PM
1,135 posts, read 1,945,729 times
Reputation: 1473
If your son is at the top of his class he may qualify for reduced tuition at your state school system. Our state university is highly regarded and it offers FULL scholarships to the valedictorians at all of the high schools in our state.

Also, when it comes to earning an advanced degree you can sometimes receive free or reduced tuition in return for staying in state after you graduate. I have a neighbor who is a doctor and had most of his medical school loans forgiven in return for agreeing to practice in a rural area for 10 years. He was planning to practice here anyway.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2014, 06:57 AM
Location: Rockport Texas from El Paso
2,601 posts, read 7,192,268 times
Reputation: 1566
Wow I had forgotten about this thread however my son Huey came home over the vacation. He is in his last semester at UT and has worked, gotten scholarships and loans to pay for it all. I agreed to pay the cell phone bill. Last semester he did college abroad and went to Chile- .

He will know work before grad school.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2014, 07:52 AM
819 posts, read 1,291,731 times
Reputation: 1399
In my opinion you owe your son food, clothing, and a safe environment to have as he is growing up. At 18 he can make his own choices. If you can afford to help him with college, great. If not, and he wants it bad enough then he will find a way. Don't beat yourself up over this. Maybe his dad, who did not provide for him while he was growing up, can assume some responsibility for college. Most everyone who gives financial advice, tells you to provide for your retirement first, and not college for your kids.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-07-2014, 08:02 AM
152 posts, read 310,672 times
Reputation: 134
Kids today dont realize the value of a dollar. Ive been doing landscaping, snow removal since i was 12 and working full time jobs since i could legally get a job and work full time (15+ i think the age was?) and still barely have enough to put a dent in my student loans but I dont expect anyone else to pay for my investment in MY self capital. My parents have thrown me some cash for books and they co-signed one of my loans and i appriciate it very much but I dont want them to have to pay for me when they dont have savings thanks to buying a home in 2006 and are 60 years old and dont have time to save up 50k to spend on me. Plus by the time a kid gets to college their parents have probably already spent tens of thousands on them right? with food, insurance, birthdays, christmases, sports (I played hockey = $1,250/yr), clothes, etc. IDK
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.

Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Parenting
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2017, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32 - Top