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Old 12-07-2010, 10:36 PM
 
270 posts, read 235,679 times
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Default Student Loans

Well, it wasn't a problem when I started college, because I didn't really expect to borrow this much money, but rising tuition costs at the college I'm currently attending have left me with a huge balance, around $40,000, if I'm not mistaken, in student loan debt. I'm planning to become a teacher, and they only make around $30,000 per year. I don't really know how much the interest is. These are federal student loans. I might make a little less than $30,000 per year, though, because I might have to work as a sub while I'm waiting for a position to open. What on earth should I do?

Also, I don't have a strong work history, and I've had trouble finding even a part-time job.
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:53 AM
 
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Ok, baby steps. Are you graduating in May 2011?

First, you need to track down all the student loan paperwork you've signed. Make a list of each loan, it's balance, term length (# of months/years), and interest rate. Also, find out what kind of a grace period you have as a recent graduate (usually your payments aren't due until about 6 months after graduation or so).

Once you have all that put together, come back to the forum with answers and we can help you figure out how much your monthly payments will be and when you will owe.

Is your degree in education- elementary or upper grades? What subject(s)? Hopfully you picked somethig in-demand in your state, like science or special Ed.

You say you have little work experience- usually student teaching is a big part if your senior year. Are you doing student teaching? It's great for your resume and much more important than a part-time job at the mall or a restaurant for someone going into teaching.
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:59 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX, USA
5,126 posts, read 6,838,732 times
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Once you tally up your loan balances, consolidation may be something to look into and income sensitive repayment terms. There are also programs that forgive some of your loan balance after working at a low income school for x amount of years.
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:08 PM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
11,674 posts, read 8,437,349 times
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if it's all federal loans you can join a program where you get a job and the government forgives part of your loans (you have to stay in the job a minimum amount of time and it's usually in depressed areas). also, i believe federal loans are eligible for "income" based repayment. so your payments will start off low, and increase as your income increases.

you have options... check out kiplinger's magazine website or money magazine website. they discuss a lot of these things.
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:37 AM
 
270 posts, read 235,679 times
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Unfortunately, I'm an English major. At first I tried to major in math, but the coursework for math majors here was ridiculous, so I was discouraged and chose the easiest subject in hopes of maintaining a high GPA and perhaps going to grad school for something else. I think I'm going to really like teaching, though, and people need to know how to read, write, and communicate well as much as they need to know math and science. I just wish the state saw it that way. On average, English / Language Arts and History teachers make less than math and science teachers. Plus, a job might not be available for me right away, which is why I might need to sub after I graduate to get my foot in the door.
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Old 12-09-2010, 06:59 AM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX, USA
5,126 posts, read 6,838,732 times
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Doesn't matter your major; if you are teaching in a disadvantaged school, you qualify for student loan forgiveness.
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Old 12-09-2010, 08:41 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
11,674 posts, read 8,437,349 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by collegestudentfromalabama View Post
Unfortunately, I'm an English major. At first I tried to major in math, but the coursework for math majors here was ridiculous, so I was discouraged and chose the easiest subject in hopes of maintaining a high GPA and perhaps going to grad school for something else. I think I'm going to really like teaching, though, and people need to know how to read, write, and communicate well as much as they need to know math and science. I just wish the state saw it that way. On average, English / Language Arts and History teachers make less than math and science teachers. Plus, a job might not be available for me right away, which is why I might need to sub after I graduate to get my foot in the door.
make the best of it. many schools pay for higher education for you, and you can always switch your focus with masters programs as you progress through your career. get yourself on income based repayment for now. you invested in your future. student loans are depressing, but statistically speaking, you'll make far more money than if you hadn't gone to college, and just google unemployment rates for college grads vs for high school grads if you ever want to prove to yourself college was worth it - no matter what job you're in now!
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Old 12-09-2010, 10:53 AM
 
3,199 posts, read 3,589,348 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by collegestudentfromalabama View Post
Unfortunately, I'm an English major. At first I tried to major in math, but the coursework for math majors here was ridiculous, so I was discouraged and chose the easiest subject in hopes of maintaining a high GPA and perhaps going to grad school for something else. I think I'm going to really like teaching, though, and people need to know how to read, write, and communicate well as much as they need to know math and science. I just wish the state saw it that way. On average, English / Language Arts and History teachers make less than math and science teachers. Plus, a job might not be available for me right away, which is why I might need to sub after I graduate to get my foot in the door.
You should still be able to get a credential to teach math. I also majored in English but took whatever the test was at the time and am credentialed to teach math through Algebra 2. If I wanted to teach higher math, there's another test I could take. (As a middle school teacher, though, that seemed unnecessary.)
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Old 12-15-2010, 07:14 AM
 
270 posts, read 235,679 times
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I think I'll check with the Department of Education and see. I think you are right, and having a credential to teach math would make it a bit easier to find a job that I liked. Plus, math is more structured than English, and I imagine it wouldn't be as hard to prepare lessons, because it's not as open-ended, and math teachers aren't expected to be extremely creative. My math skills aren't the best, though.
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Old 12-15-2010, 09:40 AM
 
425 posts, read 496,118 times
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For what it's worth, I graduated with about 50k in student loans and have them all consolidated with the Federal Direct Loans program at around 5.5% I think it is. Over 20 years that comes out to about $308 per month. I don't know what your interest rates are, but 40k isn't going to cripple you even on 30k per year. Heck just get a roommate at 300-400 per month and that pays your student loans.
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