City College Times

A strangled future

Tyler Bar-Ness

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Borrowing from the future bites back, hard

Student loans are putting young adults $1 trillion in debt, according to Time Magazine. The mounting student loan debt is a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

College is seen as a gateway to a better life. The American ideal is that a college diploma leads to a well-paying job and financial happiness.

Instead, more and more students find their stability and happiness put on hold because of the debts they take to pay for their classes and textbooks.

With with borrower debt ranging from $4,000 to $49,000, according to the Institute for College Access and Success, students are gambling on their futures by taking out loans to pay for their tuition.

With the cost of higher education already a daunting figure, these students are risking their futures. They are relying on finding lucrative employment as soon as they get their diploma.

That is not happening.

Many students are taking jobs they are “overqualified” for: jobs that do not require years of study. From lack of experience in the workplace to lacking necessary skills, these students aren’t able to land the jobs they were expecting when entering college.

More than 120,000 students who received bachelor’s degrees in 2012 took jobs in sectors that were outside the scope of their majors, according to the Huffington Post and Mckinsey On Society, a company that focuses on gathering data and information on social trends and developments for other companies..

These jobs cannot make up the gap that student loans create, and the nature of these loans can leave graduates floundering.

The high cost of tuition makes it incredibly difficult, if not outright impossible, for students to be self-reliant and pay their own way through school.

There is no simple solution to this crisis, but the federal government has responded.

The Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 contains options for those with student debt. Borrowers will be able to pay based on their income, and potentially be forgiven for debt after two decades, according to Whitehouse.gov.

While this solution is a welcome one, it will not address the issues that create this problem.

The rising cost of tuition is not slowing. Even with income-based repayment plans, borrowers will still be subject to potentially 20 years of sending part of their income to their bankers instead of their bank accounts, according to Whitehouse.gov.

Colleges could nip this issue in the bud by lowering rates.

The root cause of the issue, high college tuition, ought to be addressed by the federal government and universities. They owe it to their students, the people who are going to become the backbone of the nation.

By forcing students into financial pitfalls and allowing them to be taken advantage of by lenders, they are threatening the livelihood of many for the monetary gain of a few.

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The Voice of San Jose City College since 1956
A strangled future