During my group strength training workout this morning, I was talking to a work colleague who happens to be in the same class about Augustana’s financial assistance brochure. I commented that we were struggling with a way to represent the support and consideration and professionalism of our financial aid staff coupled with the right mix of information in a 3 color brochure.
I also want the brochure to help families wend where to get azithromycin their way through the financial aid fears: Can we afford the school our daughter wants? Is this investment worth it? Will our son get a job in four years to pay for his student loans?
Another woman in our class said that her biggest fear for her daughter (who is 14 or 15) is that her daughter will turn out like her…she clarified that she (the mom) has a lot of loan debt and won’t have it paid off until she is
52. I did not get into detail about how much of this is graduate school debt (though I know her to be a chiropractor so some is that) vs undergrad vs for-profit college (from which I believe she has some certificate/s) debt. But I did ask her if it was worth it. She replied with a vehement “No!”
To me, this is heartbreaking. Each month I paid my student loan bill I was comforted by the knowledge that Augie was the best educational decision I had made and every dime I paid was worth it. When others don’t feel the same I imagine two things have happened:
1. The work they pursued at school does not apply to their current life and/or career.
2. They were not given appropriate guidance and/or advice or made a poor decision in terms of a college as a good financial fit.
I fear we may have a generation of parents influencing their own students to make college decisions based only on money – because of their own fear of debilitating debt – and, because of this we will end up with a generation of uneducated, unemployable adults. Not that the jobs aren’t available – people just aren’t educated enough to land them.
I read this today at bizjournals.com:
The Brookings Institution found that a mismatch in supply and demand for educated workers boosts unemployment in the U.S. and adds as much as 2 percentage points to the jobless rates in some cities, Bloomberg reported.
Cities with larger gaps in education levels between workers and available positions have lower rates of job creation and new openings. Washington, San Francisco and San Jose, Calif., have the most demand for college graduates, the report found.
I fall back on advice I can say all day every day long.
1. Find a great fit for a college – do the research early to find a great place that will help you foster and highlight your strengths and help you search for your vocation.
2. Strongly consider the liberal arts. There is little I do at work that is directly connected to a specific class – but rather I use skills developed in all of my classes. The ability to read, write, speak, analyze, communicate, create…I have so many options because of these “soft” skills. It’s part of the reason I’m not sorry to pay my student loans.
Our workout ended
and, honestly, I avoided further discussion as I’m not sure I have much hope to offer this woman. I do have great hope for the families we work with at Augustana; however, as I trust our financial aid team to truly counsel families through their college choice and I know a decision to gain a degree from this great liberal arts institution is going to pay dividends for years to come – for each of our graduates.
Want a financial assistance brochure?? I’d be interested to hear if you think we accomplished my goals of easing some of the fears of financial assistance. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org