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Education and Careers Work of any kind can get stressful at times. Ask in this forum if you need help with coursework, applications, and more.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
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Is college worth it? - October 22nd 2014, 11:51 PM

I'm asking this of people who've been through college/university only. I.e., if you haven't been through college, please don't answer, because I won't consider your experience relevant to my personal research.

(1) Do you consider the education you received to be worth the money you spent?

(2) Are you working in the field you initially wanted to work in?

(3) About how much debt had you accumulated by the end of your studies?

(4) Did you receive any significant scholarships after entering college?



I need information, not advice, so that I can gather my conclusions and make my own decision regarding a college education. I'd prefer if you withheld your "you should go to college, it's the best thing ever" speeches. I've had enough of that from school recruiters.
   
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 23rd 2014, 12:11 PM

Well, I cannot answer questions one, two and three because I am still studying at University, undergraduate, so what you guys would kind of call College. I am getting help from the government, they are paying my fees for me, that's how it works in Australia. When I start working and earning a set amount, I will pay the money off through taxation. No, I have not been a part of any scholarships and I am currently looking for work. I am only in first year, so I am in the very early stages of my career but I do hope I get into the career I want, which is Law.

I don't know exactly how much debt was accumulated over time and I kind of don't want to know, I would rather know that I am having it paid off automatically when I earn a good amount. Speaking of earning good amounts, I want to end with one statistic. University graduates or college graduates earn a lot more than people who finished the twelfth grace and then moved into the workforce. With the requirement for skilled work growing as the population growth increasing, there is more and more reliance on people who have nationally recognised qualifications.

Some reports put this to be 75 percent higher than high school graduates, some only boil it down to 30% but in that regard, it is kind of worth it in the end, with relation to the opportunities for the development and choice of your career.


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  (#3 (permalink)) Old
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 23rd 2014, 02:10 PM

Hi there!

I donít know if this is relevant much since I live and have studied in the UK (and yes, I have graduated from university).

Quote:
1) Do you consider the education you received to be worth the money you spent?

Unfortunately, not really. Based on the hours spent in university, going to lectures and seminars, and using the universityís resources, I donít feel it was worth the money at all- I would want a lot more time in university, for the money that was spent (£3,465 per year tuition fee for Welsh students, but for international students they would charge around £9,000). I was in university 5 days a week in first year, falling to 4 in second year and 3 in third year. I understand that this was to allow us to do work placement and do our own studying, but considering the price remained the same, I donít think it was fair. I think it was roughly 10 hours a week that would be spent in lectures and seminars- so not that much really. But remember this is in the UK, and it may be really different where you are. However, I do value the education that I received, and can see how it would help me with post graduate study as well as my career (teaching).


Quote:
2) Are you working in the field you initially wanted to work in?

For me, personally, I need to do a post graduate course in teacher training before I can become a teacher. On doing this, I expect I will be a substitute teacher at first, rather than a full-time teacher, because there arenít many jobs going at the moment, and some schools are closing down. Also, for teaching specifically, some might not want to take on a newly qualified teacher and would prefer someone with more experience. At the moment, I do plan on gaining some work experience in classrooms and if I wanted to, I could become a teaching assistant. In short, right now I am not (but thatís down to personal issues) but I will be working in the field I initially wanted to, hopefully soon.


Quote:
3) About how much debt had you accumulated by the end of your studies?

I hate saying this because I feel spoilt and ungrateful, but none. Basically, my parents saved money up for me and my brothers to attend university (I donít know if it was planned, I think because my dad was ill and they had a lot of money, my mum would be charged more for my dadís healthcare, so it was just a quick way of getting rid of the money, to lower the cost for my dad), so they paid my tuition fees (well, half since the government pays around £5,000, but my parents paid the £3,465). I didnít need to take any loans out, but specifically for Wales, I was entitled to a non-repayable grant of around £5,000 per year. I lived at home, but had to travel, so I used this money to spend on books, travelling, eating out and now will be paying for my counselling with it

However, based on my friend who studied with me, but had loans and moved out, I estimate she is probably in between £15,000-£20,000 of debt. Though this will be paid back gradually, when she starts earning £25,000 per year.


Quote:
4) Did you receive any significant scholarships after entering college?

No, I didnít and donít know anyone who did, because the scholarships available on starting university in the UK, probably had criteria for foreign students or those wishing to pursue a career in health such as nurses. However, if I do a post graduate study I will be able to apply for a scholarship of £4,700, because I had a good degree classification.


Itís good that you want honest information though. As I said in someone elseís thread before, I think you are best off checking out what graduates do when they leave the university you are interested in, to see if they are working in their field, if they paid off their debt and whether it was worth it. You may be able to do this just researching online, since in the UK, thatís the most popular criteria for selecting universities. As much as I love education and would encourage people to pursue it, I understand that the cost seems a lot, but since Iím not in debt, I canít really comment on whether it is actually worth it. I did the same thing as you before deciding on university and some people on the internet were really worrying about being in debt and not being able to pay it back, and otherís saying itís not that bad. I guess there are too many factors to decide that e.g. what you want to study, keeping the cost down, whether or not your university helps you with career advice, applying for work in your field in your area vs. further away, starting salary and living arrangements, before deciding if it was all worth it in the end.

All the best!


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Re: Is college worth it? - October 23rd 2014, 02:35 PM

1: No, however it could had been worse. I was going through OSAP so it covered my tuition, but after graduating I have about $2000 in student loan debt and $55 a month in interest. So luckily my expenses arnt that bad, but I still don't consider it worth it.

2: No. I took computer programming in college and would like to work in the IT field, but now I do landscaping. After landscaping ill probably have to settle for a retail job because I can't get an IT job to save my life.

3: $2000 and $55 interest per month.

4: No.
   
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 23rd 2014, 06:04 PM

My answers here are in relation to the years I've spent at college only.

(1) Do you consider the education you received to be worth the money you spent? - Full time education where I live is free and regardless to this, the educational standards were very high and therefore, worth it.

(2) Are you working in the field you initially wanted to work in? - Nope.

(3) About how much debt had you accumulated by the end of your studies? - None. Again full time education for me was free.

(4) Did you receive any significant scholarships after entering college? - Nope.


Life is for living, not for losing.
   
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 23rd 2014, 11:48 PM

You need to realize this my experience and mine only.

(1) Do you consider the education you received to be worth the money you spent?

- Yes! I learned so much and loved the research I did. It was also really about becoming a better person. I grew up a lot and would never be where I am of it weren't for college. I think that it is incredibly obnoxious and stupid when people dismiss college or university as unimportant, to the point where I will lose respect for you because of the fact that I highly value education - it is one thing if you cannot afford the education or if you don't know what to do or what ever else, but to me it is ignorant to dismiss it, like how dare some act like being being educated isn't worth their time or money or efforts... I don't mean to sound harsh, but to me this is the simple reality of it. Being more educated means you can have more intellectual/intelligent conversations and all that. There are places in the world (including in North America) where it is extremely difficult for people to go to school and I feel like we should be honoured and extremely grateful to be able to go if we can go. Have I always liked being in school? No. I have sometimes outright hated it. Do I think it is exciting to still be in school at 23 years old? No, its' frustrating because I would rather be working, making money, and being able to do things. But I would never assume that it wasn't worth my time, money or effort because it is. It is worth it for my own personal growth AND for the sake of my career!!

(2) Are you working in the field you initially wanted to work in?

- No. But that's a good thing. I wanted to be a cop and I wouldn't have liked that. I now want to work in communications which I'll like more. I guess I could always go back and become a police officer, but I would much rather be in a communications role no matter what. I like to be able to get to the root of things, communicate about what is going on and deal with people and this is a nice middle ground with things like policing, social work etc.

(3) About how much debt had you accumulated by the end of your studies?

- None. My family has money. Because I come from a pretty privileged background, I never had to worry about how I was going to be paying for my education. Plus, my country isn't as expensive to go to university as other countries like the USA

(4) Did you receive any significant scholarships after entering college?

- No. Again, my family had the money to support me and I felt like it was wrong to take money for things like scholarships when it meant that someone else who didn't have family who could support them would be denied money and might suffer. I didn't want someone to lose out and be unable to go to university or college or be unable to take care of themselves or have extra burdens etc. because I got the money they needed more than they did. I was also never offered scholarships because I was "such an awesome student", I always did good in school, but my grades weren't blowing anyone away, and I never won anything through sports or jobs, so I never got anything.




Feel free to PM me if you ever need to chat or have questions

Last edited by Always *; October 24th 2014 at 03:25 PM.
   
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 24th 2014, 01:04 AM

(1) Do you consider the education you received to be worth the money you spent?

Yes. I'm also in Australia, so have what's effectively a low interest loan - but I do still have to pay it back (currently 6% of my income goes towards that, with the tax I pay).
The reasons I say it is worth it:
- I needed these qualifications to do the work I do
- I did further study to improve my skills, and it has helped me become a better teacher
- The cost would not be significantly different for other places in Australia

(2) Are you working in the field you initially wanted to work in?
Not exactly. When I first started university study, I wanted to work in Engineering. I changed my mind about two years into that course, but since then I am working in teaching. I have just completed a Masters that will qualify me for guidance counsellor work - that will happen eventually (so will be a yes as well).

(3) About how much debt had you accumulated by the end of your studies?
I honestly don't know. Currently I still owe around $30k. I've paid off something like $20k+ over the time that I've been working and studying (and wow, that does seem like a bit). Over here we have income tax deducted from our pay automagically, uni loan repayments also happen that way - so I don't pay too much attention to how much.

(4) Did you receive any significant scholarships after entering college?
Nope. Apart from the student loans, did not receive a cent


Feel free to email/PM/VM/whatever me if you want. I'll answer as soon as I can.

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Re: Is college worth it? - October 24th 2014, 02:53 AM

Im a freshman in college (not the college I wanted, by the way) so I dont necessarily have the experience you asked for, but where I'm from, if you dont go to college, you are completely screwed.
Yeah, you'll have to deal with debt, but thats why you gotta get a job while your there.
   
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 24th 2014, 05:30 AM

(1) Do you consider the education you received to be worth the money you spent?
Yes. However, I went through a community college with a partnership with a main university so I had to pay a fraction for the total cost of my BSN when compared to those who went to a four year university.

(2) Are you working in the field you initially wanted to work in? No but it is what I went to school.

(3) About how much debt had you accumulated by the end of your studies? About 30,000 from my nursing school debt but I have 45,000 because I changed my major. Keep in mind that I also did my paramedic cert and firefighting classes too.

(4) Did you receive any significant scholarships after entering college?
I did but I changed universities because I hated the university I went to.
   
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Re: Is college worth it? - October 24th 2014, 05:50 AM

Wow! So much information. Thanks guys.
   
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