The tragedy of people who take on huge debts for college or specialized training schools is spreading across he nation.
This has concerned me for many years. You can imagine the heartbreak of parents who see their children sucked into this quicksand.
There is a new movie, Default: The Student Loan Documentary. I hope parents and students see it.
Here is a man who, at age 28, dropped out of college and enrolled in a school for chefs. His father refused to co-sign. His father was wise.
The man is now 36 and has $142,000 in college loans. He cannot declare bankruptcy. The law does not allow this for educational debt except in certain rare cases.
How did this happen? He saw commercials for the school on the Food Network. He decided that he needed a degree. He did not apprentice with a master chef. He signed up.
He took on $46,000 in private loans. Interest rate. He is paying 19%. Then he took on another $14,000 in federal government loans.
He got a degree. He got a job that paid $10 an hour.
He stopped paying. Interest rate costs took over.
He gets called every day by debt-collection agencies.
He has a bad credit rating.
He lives in his ancient minivan.
If you have a child or grandchild who is considering college, talk with him about lower-cost strategies. They exist. Don’t let this happen to anyone you care about.