"What a wonder life I've had! I only wish I'd realized it sooner." Colette

Feb 21, 2021

WHY Should We Forgive College Debt?

I don't happen to agree with wiping out College Debts to the tune of $50,000 each.  Even $10,000 gives me pause. No, I wasn't saddled with tremendous debt because I worked my way through college.  What's wrong with that?

In 1973 my parents could only afford a local Community College, so I watched with envy as my classmates went off to this-University-and-that. I didn't qualify for aid and my grades weren't good enough for scholarships, so I attended Brookdale for 6 months before dropping out to get married the first time.

In 1975 I went back, taking night classes while working full-time in various clerical positions for Civil Service. An Army-wife, I moved with my husband while studying; transferring and losing credits along the way. My Associates degree came from New Mexico State University and finally my Bachelor's in 1985 from the University of Maryland.  My original major was Poli Sci with a minor in Anthropology; but courses were limited overseas, so I received my B.S. in Business Management, boring.

My parents offered to pay for school after I married because they'd been willing to pay for my 4 year education before. But I said, No thanks, because I thought I'd be less likely to drop a class if the money was coming out of my own pocket, and I was right.  Even though I've never unrolled and framed the certificate (no space to hang), the accomplishment means much more to me than perhaps it would have, after all that time and effort.

I ended up years behind many of my classmates, but like the tortoise and the hare I eventually got to the finish line at 30, with a lifetime's worth of experiences even by that age.

Drawing by Dad
So no, I don't think every college debt should be wiped clean.  It's totally unfair to those who couldn't afford to go to the fancier schools to begin with.

Instead of trying to right every wrong of the past, perhaps in the future the government should begin a fund for EVERY CHILD at birth, so that when they turn 18 they can decide whether to put the money towards some sort of schooling or into developing a business, with the guidance of mentors.  Online even now are many professionals, bored with retirement, who are willing to dispense advice for free to those interested, look them up.

I loved President Biden's response to that young gal who asked how he proposed to ensure they receive their $50,000 bail-out: "I DON'T."  Honestly, what do parents teach their children nowadays?

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