If you've ever even considered going to college, you know how expensive the cost of tuition is. This hefty price tag makes getting student loans a necessity for many, but the politics behind those loans are often shady, which is why Franchesca Ramsey of MTV's Decoded is calling BS on the student loan game. She cites that 40 million Americans have student loan debt, and she's right: According to MarketWatch, these 40 million people collectively have over $1.3 trillion dollars in debt that grows over $3,000 every single second. The average borrower has about $29,000 in debt, which for context, is about two-thirds of the average starting salary of $45,000 for a college grad. Yikes.
Decoded teamed up with MoveOn.org's Benjamin O'Keefe to paint a full picture of today's college debt situation. As they pointed out, this is one of the prime 2016 Presidential election issues, since so many Americans are facing the harsh realities of student loans. Furthermore it doesn't seem like this is one of those problems that's going to go away on its own, since more than half of student loans are now in deferral or delinquent, according to a TransUnion study.
If all of this isn't convincing enough, let's look at three of the reasons Ramsey and O'Keefe site for student loans being BS. To see the full list, make sure to watch the video below!
1. College Used To Be Free In America
Yes, you read that correctly. According to O'Keefe, our public university system was first created in 1862 with the signing of the Morill Land-Grant College Act; the intent of its founders was to make education a right for citizens. Since schools were funded almost exclusively using federal dollars, they were either extremely cheap or even free to students. For context, the average cost of tuition and fees for all four years of college in 1863 $10,783, while today it stands at $129,396.
2. Your Tuition Dollars Are Probably Not Going Where You Want Them To
So where exactly does your $129,396 go? Not where you might think — or want. It turns out that there's a direct correlation between tuition costs and college presidents salaries and if you don't believe it could really be that impactful, the highest paid university presidents each made more than $3 million in 2011. As if that wasn't alarming enough, college tuition rates are actually rising faster than inflation, according to a report released yesterday by the College Board. That same report also found that student aid can't keep pace with the huge tuition hikes. Speaking of financial aid, Ramsey cites a statistic that says that schools with the highest paid presidents spend more on administrative costs than scholarships by more than a two to one ratio. Talk about infuriating!
3. Student Loan Debt Never Goes Away
If you ever dream about your student loan debt being whisked off to leave you happily ever after... well, I hate to tell you this, but your dreams are probably never going to come true. "Student loan debt is kind of a like a crazy ex who won't stop calling you, except you can't file for a restraining order to keep it away," O'Keefe says. Here's why: Most loans can be forgiven if you ever go into bankruptcy, but student loans are not forgiven in these cases, meaning that even if you are literally broke, you're still going to have to pay back your student loan debt. Even in cases of death, student loans won't necessarily be forgiven. O'Keefe cites one such story of a California couple who had to pay back some $200,000 of their daughter's student loan debt after she passed away, which is really messed up! So, there's really no way out of paying back all $1.3 trillion dollars we collectively owe.
Are you pissed off yet? If these three reasons weren't enough, the final two should put you over the top. To see them, watch the full video below.
Images: MTV News/YouTube (3)