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Debt

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3 callers - all 'friend of a friend' types.

With debts at £45K, £55K and £65K.

Paying of credit with credit, oops.

This amount is huge to me. I cannot believe how it can happen? but it does and will continue.

And with reference to this post maybe the media method of control here is of care and consideration [url="http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=28826&hl="]http://www.housepricecrash.co.uk/forum/ind...topic=28826&hl=[/url]

The psychology of crash mentality is coming in stages. And the first step seems to be debt worries and councelling. Then people will look at debt as an overhead rather than an investment.

Whether the media do continue with this in steps or not the stories will come out.

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the psychology of debt is interesting. Somehow, it seems that the more debt you have, the wealthier you are perceived to be, maybe because there is an assumption that you have the ability to service that debt, or the assets to back it up.

Overheard this in the changing room of my sports club last week - 'I reckon my house has gone up £170,000 over the last couple of years, so I've taken another £85,000 out'. This sounds to me like he's already taken the same amount out already, ie he's cashed in what equity he thinks he's made over this time.

His three or four mate's reactions are interesting: 'minted man!', 'lucky b*****d!', etc. He is obviously 'the man' in their eyes. All they can see is that he has a wad of cash to blow. They don't see the enormous financial hole he will now be paying interest on. Meanwhile, I'm thinking 'what a dick!'.

I can understand the mentality of 'keeping up with the Jones', though I've never bought into that myself, but the idea of declaring your indebtedness as a sign of wealth is just bizzare.

Interest rate rises, or redundancy is going to be a big wake up call for folks like this.

TLM

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[quote name='trompe le monde' post='361461' date='Apr 27 2006, 10:15 PM']

His three or four mate's reactions are interesting: 'minted man!', 'lucky b*****d!', etc. He is obviously 'the man' in their eyes. All they can see is that he has a wad of cash to blow. They don't see the enormous financial hole he will now be paying interest on. Meanwhile, I'm thinking 'what a dick!'.

Interest rate rises, or redundancy is going to be a big wake up call for folks like this.

TLM
[/quote]

I can picture your eyes rolling to the back of your head thinking it 'aint worth educating these people.

It is however is unimaginably attractive to the human psyche. All that wealth and not even a blink or a thought for debt.

We are (pop population) sold down the river.

Great story. Edited by music man

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[quote name='trompe le monde' post='361461' date='Apr 27 2006, 10:15 PM']
the psychology of debt is interesting. Somehow, it seems that the more debt you have, the wealthier you are perceived to be, maybe because there is an assumption that you have the ability to service that debt, or the assets to back it up.

Overheard this in the changing room of my sports club last week - 'I reckon my house has gone up £170,000 over the last couple of years, so I've taken another £85,000 out'. This sounds to me like he's already taken the same amount out already, ie he's cashed in what equity he thinks he's made over this time.

His three or four mate's reactions are interesting: 'minted man!', 'lucky b*****d!', etc. He is obviously 'the man' in their eyes. All they can see is that he has a wad of cash to blow. They don't see the enormous financial hole he will now be paying interest on. Meanwhile, I'm thinking 'what a dick!'.

I can understand the mentality of 'keeping up with the Jones', though I've never bought into that myself, but the idea of declaring your indebtedness as a sign of wealth is just bizzare.

Interest rate rises, or redundancy is going to be a big wake up call for folks like this.

TLM
[/quote]
Nice story.

Reminds me of the wife of a friend,who looked me in the eye, and said " We've paid off all our debts, and put it on the mortgage" !?


Everyone is rich, it's just that no-one has any money. :blink:

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[quote name='trompe le monde' post='361461' date='Apr 27 2006, 10:15 PM']

Interest rate rises, or redundancy is going to be a big wake up call for folks like this.

[/quote]

or failing that, and possibly worst of all outcomes is that they survive IR rises (or there are none) and keep their jobs only to get to 65 with no savings, no pension and ten more years of crippling mortgage payments. Whoops.

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I don't know how many of you lot are (former) students, but indulge me for a moment while I tell a tale of Government backed debt pushers.

I started university in '93. Student loan of almost 2k was available (no grant for me, just fees paid of £750) but this was a huge amount of debt and most people shunned it.

The trouble began in the first few weeks as the banks started to offer interest free overdrafts of up to £400. This is a palatable amount, tide you over between parental maintenance cheques. Only buys a few weeks worth of drinks though. The initial hurdle of debt acceptance overcome, the heavy hitters at the Student Loans Company - backed and sponsored by the government come into play. Pretty rapidly (within the first semester) most of the folk I knew were in hock for around £2200. A few had a plan to invest it. A small percentage did.

The rest of us blew it in a couple of months - on computers / hifi / drinks / cars. Mostly drinks. Not sure the exact return but £1700 of government money ploughed into alcoholic beverages at what 30%+ tax, then index link the payments over x years. Winner.

Anyway, in the second year the bank offers £800 interest free overdraft, SLC another £1800. 3rd year bank is up to £1200 and SLC about £2k. At this stage - or maybe slightly before - credit card approvals come through. Maybe start you light - £800. Within 6 months thats easily up to £2k.

By this time the student has £1800 overdraft, £5500 SLC and £2k on the cc.

Of course then I continued for another 4 years.

Come out of that with £3300 OD, £10,600 SLC and £3000 cc. Or itro £17k debt.

Start first job out of uni at about £19k. Not bad. Ok so I owe almost 1 years salary - or rather 1/3 of a mortgage - already. Nice one. Of course, now I am working I need to find a room £350mnth. Some suits. Travel at over £100mnth. Council tax. Bills. Food? Due to excessive overdraft - no graduate loan at pref rates...

Debt payments - interest only/minimal payments at this point. A year or so later some white goods and a bigscreen tv on 5 years tic at £50mnth. Bargain. Have 2. Seems like the credit companies like me again. New credit card, balance transfer to interest free. Soon ofcourse thats 2x£3,3k ccards. So an £8k loan, smashing, a bit of breathing room. Pay off the cards. So, soon that's an £8k loan + 2x£3.3k CCs. Best get another card to balance transfer. So £4.5kcc + £2k cc. Then 2x£3.3k ccs +£4.5k. So another £8k will sort that out.

Of course earnings are up by this stage - £30k +. But on top of the £17k student debt, £5k white goods theres now £10k ccards and £16k loans. Or 1.5x salary. Over half takehome pay goes as debt servicing.

Fortunately I had bought a flat for £32k as a student. So theres this £27k mortgage I havent mentioned. Which happily mew'd up to 47k. Add in a loan from mum and debts down to £6k of student loans and whitegoods. Mortgage up from £190 to £290, total debt payments down to £470 (inc mortgage).

Happy bunny.
Not terribly interested in borrowing money any more. Recovered addict perhaps? Personally I feel the whole thing was an orchestrated, and government led campaign to get young middle class kids comfortable with debt that otherwise they would never have taken, to spend money they would not have had for several years, on stuff that dissappeared in a short time span - real short term consumers.

And I understand my debts pale in comparison to the current generations of students...

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[quote name='RichB' post='361803' date='Apr 28 2006, 10:57 AM']
Happy bunny.
Not terribly interested in borrowing money any more. Recovered addict perhaps? Personally I feel the whole thing was an orchestrated, and government led campaign to get young middle class kids comfortable with debt that otherwise they would never have taken, to spend money they would not have had for several years, on stuff that dissappeared in a short time span - real short term consumers.

And I understand my debts pale in comparison to the current generations of students...
[/quote]The truly sad thing is that your debts really don't sound that bad by today's standards! At least you don't have a monster mortgage either.

The changing attitudes to debt are a really disturbing phenomenon. You have to wonder people are expected to jump on to the property ladder given all the debt they've had to accrue through university etc etc.

I guess some would ssay that no one is ever forced to take on too much debt, but I wonder if people's heuristics have been altogether shifted - "everyone else does this, the banks are offering the cash, it must be OK". I guess lots of parties are to blame.

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[quote name='RichB' post='361803' date='Apr 28 2006, 10:57 AM']
I don't know how many of you lot are (former) students, but indulge me for a moment while I tell a tale of Government backed debt pushers.

I started university in '93. Student loan of almost 2k was available (no grant for me, just fees paid of £750) but this was a huge amount of debt and most people shunned it.

The trouble began in the first few weeks as the banks started to offer interest free overdrafts of up to £400. This is a palatable amount, tide you over between parental maintenance cheques. Only buys a few weeks worth of drinks though. The initial hurdle of debt acceptance overcome, the heavy hitters at the Student Loans Company - backed and sponsored by the government come into play. Pretty rapidly (within the first semester) most of the folk I knew were in hock for around £2200. A few had a plan to invest it. A small percentage did.

The rest of us blew it in a couple of months - on computers / hifi / drinks / cars. Mostly drinks. Not sure the exact return but £1700 of government money ploughed into alcoholic beverages at what 30%+ tax, then index link the payments over x years. Winner.

Anyway, in the second year the bank offers £800 interest free overdraft, SLC another £1800. 3rd year bank is up to £1200 and SLC about £2k. At this stage - or maybe slightly before - credit card approvals come through. Maybe start you light - £800. Within 6 months thats easily up to £2k.

By this time the student has £1800 overdraft, £5500 SLC and £2k on the cc.

Of course then I continued for another 4 years.

Come out of that with £3300 OD, £10,600 SLC and £3000 cc. Or itro £17k debt.

Start first job out of uni at about £19k. Not bad. Ok so I owe almost 1 years salary - or rather 1/3 of a mortgage - already. Nice one. Of course, now I am working I need to find a room £350mnth. Some suits. Travel at over £100mnth. Council tax. Bills. Food? Due to excessive overdraft - no graduate loan at pref rates...

Debt payments - interest only/minimal payments at this point. A year or so later some white goods and a bigscreen tv on 5 years tic at £50mnth. Bargain. Have 2. Seems like the credit companies like me again. New credit card, balance transfer to interest free. Soon ofcourse thats 2x£3,3k ccards. So an £8k loan, smashing, a bit of breathing room. Pay off the cards. So, soon that's an £8k loan + 2x£3.3k CCs. Best get another card to balance transfer. So £4.5kcc + £2k cc. Then 2x£3.3k ccs +£4.5k. So another £8k will sort that out.

Of course earnings are up by this stage - £30k +. But on top of the £17k student debt, £5k white goods theres now £10k ccards and £16k loans. Or 1.5x salary. Over half takehome pay goes as debt servicing.

Fortunately I had bought a flat for £32k as a student. So theres this £27k mortgage I havent mentioned. Which happily mew'd up to 47k. Add in a loan from mum and debts down to £6k of student loans and whitegoods. Mortgage up from £190 to £290, total debt payments down to £470 (inc mortgage).

Happy bunny.
Not terribly interested in borrowing money any more. Recovered addict perhaps? Personally I feel the whole thing was an orchestrated, and government led campaign to get young middle class kids comfortable with debt that otherwise they would never have taken, to spend money they would not have had for several years, on stuff that dissappeared in a short time span - real short term consumers.

And I understand my debts pale in comparison to the current generations of students...
[/quote]

Were the student loans available really that big in the early 90s? Am I remembering it wrong? I started university in 1995 and had the maximum loan for all three years, and I'm sure I could only borrow between 1400 and 1800 per year at that stage. I ended up with student loans co. debt of about 4.5k, and that was on the maximum rate for each year. No fees either then. (I think I got a good deal really: three years of education for 4.5k? Bargain compared to the US, say, and knowing now how low lecturers' pay is, I don't resent it at all). How did you get 10k off the SLC; how long was your course....???

edit: reading it again I see you said you continued for another 4 years - what subject? (I did postgrad and wasn't allowed to borrow from the SLC)....were you doing medicine or something similar? In which case, that amount of debt is easily repayable and probably represents nothing like the real cost of your education (sorry to be a pain, but I'm a university lecturer and what students pay is nothing like what the real costs are, even at the present time - in reality they should be paying much more like the levels paid in North America) Edited by Zaranna

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On the contrary, the real cost is absorbed by the exhorbitantly high wages (gvmt estimate £400k average over their working life) earned by a graduate compared to a non grad. Given that tax is going to be paid on that portion at around at least 30% + the national insurance, then the government rakes in at least £120k for the average graduate in extra taxes - thats before we factor in anything exciting like the extra fuel tax for the large car, the 17.5% rake on sales etc. But as a lecturer I am sure you have considered this already.


Not medicine - ended up with an MA in history and an MSc in AI. Now sitting pretty as a DBA for an international online gaming group, so the £130 a month repayments are less relevant. But when your take home is £1300 its a lot.

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When you're a student, loans are a fact of life, you and everyone else had one.

When i when to uni in 1999 everyone took out the £3k student loan for the 3 years they were there + overdrafts and in some cases emergency loans + credit cards.

Basically regardless of how much in debt you were, there was always someone else who was more in debt than you - so there is a perception that's everything is fine and also you didn't really think of the student loan cheques as debt more like a life line.

I came out of uni with about £11k of debt - i think that's a decent price for my education and the experience. although i didn't think that when i got my first real job which paid only £11k - thankfully times have gotten better since those days.

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a freind of mine told me how a few years ago he and his wife had been working really hard at their (low paying) jobs and he said" i told her youve worked hard treat yourself. get a loan and buy yourself some thing nice"
he was telling me that they were that well off they could afford a loan!....wow.

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[quote name='RichB' post='362819' date='Apr 29 2006, 12:45 AM']
On the contrary, the real cost is absorbed by the exhorbitantly high wages (gvmt estimate £400k average over their working life) earned by a graduate compared to a non grad. Given that tax is going to be paid on that portion at around at least 30% + the national insurance, then the government rakes in at least £120k for the average graduate in extra taxes - thats before we factor in anything exciting like the extra fuel tax for the large car, the 17.5% rake on sales etc. But as a lecturer I am sure you have considered this already.
Not medicine - ended up with an MA in history and an MSc in AI. Now sitting pretty as a DBA for an international online gaming group, so the £130 a month repayments are less relevant. But when your take home is £1300 its a lot.
[/quote]


The real costs aren't in fact covered by the amounts raised in taxation. Lecturers' pay has fallen by 40 percent over the past three decades, whilst the workload has increased by 140 percent (as not enough lecturers are hired). Cost-cutting has meant that the only way graduates are getting the education they do get is because university staff have been willing to accept less pay for the same job (in real terms). Now, with the current cost of housing, I would need to earn a base salary of 75k to achieve the kind of living standards enjoyed by lecturers 40 years ago. This means more and more university staff are leaving the profession. Graduate tutors and junior scholars are routinely paid below minimum wage (they are contracted per "contact hour" not per working hour, but in reality they will spend 4-5 hours work for that one "contact hour"). For us to be paid a reasonable salary the money coming in per student would need to more than double - not the kind of costs that it's feasible to be borne through general taxation. I look forward to the day when our top universities are charging people what it really costs to run a university and pay staff what they're actually worth - say around 35,000 pounds per head in fees, which is many more times what the state factors in as costs at the moment. Edited by Zaranna

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You aren't paying attention are you zaranna?

The gvmt reckons the average graduate earns £400k over the average non graduate over their lifetimes.

Even tax rake of only 25% is £100k. If the cost of educating a University student for 3 or 4 years is truly over £25k per annum, someone really needs to look at the business side of academia in a hurry. Hell, top residential public schools cost less than that.

If we actually look at the tax rate as being closer to 40% then it works out to over £40k pa for a 4 year course. You cannot possibly tell me that the actual cost of educating a university graduate is more than either of those figures.

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[quote name='RichB' post='365870' date='May 3 2006, 03:06 PM']
The gvmt reckons the average graduate earns £400k over the average non graduate over their lifetimes.
[/quote]
sorry to butt in on what is an interesting thread

anyhow, i seem to recall (sorry - no link!) that much vaunted government figures of graduate lifetime earnings are produced by the AGR (the Association of Graduate Recruiters).

members of the AGR are your classic City type employers - banks, big four accountants etc etc

unfortunately the sort of student who attends a "new" university and who leaves with an "OK" degree and ends up working in a SME is never going to earn anything like these sort of sums.

<cynical mode>perhaps it is a brilliant government plan to effectively have a self-financing scheme to keep people off the dole</cynical mode> :(

food for thought, anyway...

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RichB, that £400k figure is a complete red herring. It might still apply to some people, but the true average return on a degree is probably barely a third of that. And again that's average, not median.

Cost of an education - yes, Oxbridge should be more like £30k pa, including tuition, board, and everything. Running a university PROPERLY is fantastically expensive and teaching properly (as opposed to sixth form style pile 'em high) is very expensive.

Academic pay is a joke. In comparative terms, to live the lifestyle my parents lived in the mid/late 1960s on my father's pay as a lecturer at Imperial you'd need to earn about £100k. That's the truth of falling living standards.

Sad thing is, I'm still trying to get an academic job! Mainly because I want to at least try it and see what it's like, and I'm not convinced it's any more sh!t than other jobs now. I can't think of anybody who says they'd recommend their kids going into whatever it is they do.

As for the business side of universities, forget it. They're run by a bunch of old tossers who are in it up to their neck in cosy agreements with the govt. The head of the CVCP, if that's what they're still called (Committee of VIce-Chancellors and Principals) does his stint then gets a peerage and a seat in the Lords and gets to hob-nob with the great and the good.

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[quote name='RichB' post='365870' date='May 3 2006, 03:06 PM']
You aren't paying attention are you zaranna?

The gvmt reckons the average graduate earns £400k over the average non graduate over their lifetimes.

Even tax rake of only 25% is £100k. If the cost of educating a University student for 3 or 4 years is truly over £25k per annum, someone really needs to look at the business side of academia in a hurry. Hell, top residential public schools cost less than that.

If we actually look at the tax rate as being closer to 40% then it works out to over £40k pa for a 4 year course. You cannot possibly tell me that the actual cost of educating a university graduate is more than either of those figures.
[/quote]


BUT i don't think it is accurate to say that graduates earn over 400k more than non-graduates: what about those of them that are female? (who may see some of that benefit knocked off or even negated by having children?) With a more realistic assessment of what graduates will be able to earn in the next 20-40 years (in an age of low wage inflation, remember) compared to the possible costs of changing career, having children, THEN put next to a much more realistic assessment of what it really costs to provide a university education, I think you would see these figures change quite a lot.


"If the cost of educating a University student for 3 or 4 years is truly over £25k per annum, someone really needs to look at the business side of academia in a hurry. Hell, top residential public schools cost less than that."

Yes, it is actually a very expensive business. Top public schools tend not to have to run large campuses, in some cases the size of small towns, huge administrative staffs, teach thousands of pupils at a time, and - oh yes - they also tend not to do that much world-class reserach into curing cancer, developing new technologies, and bringing that research and world-class teaching to the students.

[quote name='munro' post='366323' date='May 3 2006, 10:11 PM']
RichB, that £400k figure is a complete red herring. It might still apply to some people, but the true average return on a degree is probably barely a third of that. And again that's average, not median.

Cost of an education - yes, Oxbridge should be more like £30k pa, including tuition, board, and everything. Running a university PROPERLY is fantastically expensive and teaching properly (as opposed to sixth form style pile 'em high) is very expensive.

Academic pay is a joke. In comparative terms, to live the lifestyle my parents lived in the mid/late 1960s on my father's pay as a lecturer at Imperial you'd need to earn about £100k. That's the truth of falling living standards.

Sad thing is, I'm still trying to get an academic job! Mainly because I want to at least try it and see what it's like, and I'm not convinced it's any more sh!t than other jobs now. I can't think of anybody who says they'd recommend their kids going into whatever it is they do.

As for the business side of universities, forget it. They're run by a bunch of old tossers who are in it up to their neck in cosy agreements with the govt. The head of the CVCP, if that's what they're still called (Committee of VIce-Chancellors and Principals) does his stint then gets a peerage and a seat in the Lords and gets to hob-nob with the great and the good.
[/quote]

I feel your pain! Sometime I think I should just cut and run and become a management consultant. I should be spending the summer on my research but instead I plan to scope out some freelance consulting work instead.

With the current cost of living/housing, academia is becoming an absolute joke. I see older tenured colleagues who do about 2 days' work a week, no research (don't need to, no-one will be able to get rid of them even if they can't return anything on RAE), they dump all the teaching/admin on junior people (who spend 80 hours a week working just to keep in the same place) and they all own lovely, lovely houses in the centre of town, bought for about 10p in 1970. Whereas us, the junior people, are on temp contacts, shouted at all the time about our RAE points, do a workload of about 12-14 hours per day doing all the teaching and admin the permanent people can't be bothered to do, and can look forward to earning 27k for it and living in a college room for the next ten years :(

In relation to whether it's more shit than other jobs - well, it depends on the kind of academic job you manage to get, and your discipline (a research post ins cience is a very different kettle of fish to a teaching post in the humanities). But I'd have to say that the workload, stress and pressure in academia at a major research university now is certainly no less than working in the city for a bank or for a major corporation (I know, I have done both). However, in academia, you will be paid about a third or a quarter of the amount you would earn in the private sector. I sometimes think that I don't on earth know why I thought academia would be a nicer job than working in the city - I work the same hours, it's just as stressful, my job is, if anything, less secure, and I can't afford to live. Academia - BIG mistake as far as I am concerned - I wish I had stayed in my previous job! I thought that I would be happy to trade less pay for a better quality of life, but the cost of living has made less pay more like impossible pay. And just as bad quality of life as working in industry. Edited by Zaranna

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Hi Zaranna,

Obviously depends on your department etc, but it is possible to "play the game". A good friend (now with a senior lectureship) simply does the bare minimum admin/lecturing, etc, but he has the department over a barrel in that they need him much more than he needs them. Sounds like you're at Oxbridge so I guess you have more tutorials etc, and you're expected to be eternally grateful for the crap they serve you.

I am lucky in that I am my own boss and would kill for more pressure/deadlines! All gets a bit slow, waiting for peer review to churn away.

Anyway, we've moved well away from market psychology now so I'm going to stop whittering on!

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[quote name='RichM' post='366646' date='May 4 2006, 11:28 AM']
Hi Zaranna,

Obviously depends on your department etc, but it is possible to "play the game". A good friend (now with a senior lectureship) simply does the bare minimum admin/lecturing, etc, but he has the department over a barrel in that they need him much more than he needs them. Sounds like you're at Oxbridge so I guess you have more tutorials etc, and you're expected to be eternally grateful for the crap they serve you.

I am lucky in that I am my own boss and would kill for more pressure/deadlines! All gets a bit slow, waiting for peer review to churn away.

Anyway, we've moved well away from market psychology now so I'm going to stop whittering on!
[/quote]


Sounds like your friend has a permanent job - and is reasonably well advanced in his career if he has a senior lectureship. Like with house prices, in academia there's a severe case of "anyone over 35-ish is OK, anyone under 35-ish is screwed" going on at the moment. If you got into the job in the 60s-90s and are now permanent you're pretty much untouchable, because (as you say), you'll have accumulated enough career points to be the one calling the shots (the department needs you and your research). But if you're still establishing a research profile and you're relatively new on the market, you're the one who's over the barrel being royally screwed by the system (icky mixed metaphor, but apt). Most departments - except ones like economics where there's a shortage of good people because of industry salaries - know they have hundreds of fantastic young scholars to choose from, all of whom will work like crazy on temp contracts to get and keep a job by doing all the crap that's thrown at them. Supply and demand.......:(

And, the sad thing is, for your friend to do what he does, there are probably several junior people, admin staff, freelancers and grad students in the background frantically doing all the work that should be his job but that he's not doing.....so for him to 'play the game' just ends up meaning the department is screwing someone else over, somewhere along the line. It's not so nice when you're the person picking up the slack for senior colleagues who do what your friend does, who then won't support any industrial action over pay because they believe scholars should do it for the love of it, who have no idea about how much houses cost because they bought theirs when academics had lovely lives (my thesis supervisor owned 4 houses outright, and was completely bemused as to why I didn't just buy a nice house while I was a grad student). I have a colleague (my age) who earns 16k in his job as a college lecturer, supports a wife and baby on that and his rent is 750 per month - I genuinely don't know how he does it, or how they even eat; I can only assume they survive on tax credits - but I don't know why the more senior people don't think this is shameful. Isn't that shameful for a profession that sees itself as (in the main) enlightened and intellectual? Why aren't senior people more worried about what 'playing the game' and getting away with the minimum does to their profession AS a profession? I guess for the same reason that peopel in general don't see what high house prices and high debt are doing to younger generations and therefore to their own society - short term thinking.

Yes, I am at Oxbridge - how did you guess ;) (the general stress, overwork and bitterness rather gives it away I think :D)


Sorry, rant over - but back on the topic of debt, and student debt - that's why we do need some kind of differential fee structure: so that those going into an arts degree at a medium-tier university will see a fee charged that represents the right balance of what it costs to teach them *and* what kind of earning advantage they will see in the future (which, as someone else pointed out, is unlikely to be the kind of lifetime earnings bonus that is seen by city employees or accountants). And people doing medicine at Oxbridge who benefit from exorbitantly expensive teaching and will also go on to see a huge pay advantage from that will cover some of the more appropriate costs of what that really represents. BUT there are other potential problems with differential fees, including the disadvantaging of university staff in some disciplines compared to others....a very complex topic....I have no answers yet :blink: Edited by Zaranna

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[quote name='RichM' post='366852' date='May 4 2006, 02:19 PM']
You're not Andrew Farlow are you? :lol:
[/quote]

Now, that *would* be telling..... :lol: :P B)

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[quote name='munro' post='366323' date='May 3 2006, 10:11 PM']
RichB, that £400k figure is a complete red herring. It might still apply to some people, but the true average return on a degree is probably barely a third of that. And again that's average, not median.

[/quote]

I wrote to my MP to complain about that figure, from the mouth of Margaret Hodge.
I think Michael Spencer had my 400k, and some.

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Im not convinced by the government conspiricy stories, I think the problem is we are growing up with a spoilt generation whos parents provided everything for them just when they wanted it and they got used to that. The idea of having to wait, save, or earn a luxury item is alien, my generation seems to think they have a right to own a car, designer goods, big TV, house - for previous generations this was a priviledge to be worked for.

For some reason I was a saver. At uni I didnt drink my loan, all the student sob stories are crazy, we were all at uni, we all know how much of that money went on luxury items that 2/3 of the world can only dream of. Booze, fags, clubs, drugs, I saw 'poor students' waste on all these things. And then my peers in their 1st jobs went for the luxury flat, bought the iPods, continued to blow £1-200 every weekend, and yes the debts rocketed.

So then there's me, I didnt waste my money, I knew my priorities involved preparing for the family I knew I one day wanted, I saved, paid of my debts, and managed to put away a large sum over a period of years for a house deposit. As a FTB i was able to buy a house in london, with double bedrooms, garden, newly fitted kitchen, bathroom, etc so that my kids have a stable roof over their head that they can call home for the next 10yrs or whatever.

Im not special, I dont earn that much, I just work hard and save so I can have the things I want. I have so little sympathy for this 'priced out of the market' thing, you arent priced out, you just gotta finally learn the lesson that you cant have everything at the click of ya fingers. You gotta work for it, you gotta save for it.

The sad thing is that for every chap like me there are another load who spend lspend spend and at the end of the day, through tax, it'll be people like me who have to pick up the tab when it all goes wrong. Sometimes its tempting to sign up to a few credit cards and just say f**k it but I wasnt brought up like that I guess.

Ah well, good luck to everyone, I certainly dont wish bad things on anyone despite my frustrations at my peers expectations to be handed it all on a plate... and on the bright side, the next generation of youngsters is gonna have it even harder... :(

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I often wonder what goes through the minds of these credit-upon-credit-upon-credit people.

I'm 24, graduated a year and a bit ago and am debt-free. Well, commercial debt. I have £15K worth of government student loan to go, and even that makes me feel rotten.

And then to see people with 30, 40, 50 grand worth of debt on the tv who had no idea how much they owe... how can you *get* to that state? I'll hold my hands up and say I don't have a perfect money history - in fact as a student I was crap - but christ, that's just insane.

Behold my northern working class roots, I spose :) But at least being brought up that way means I can live in a nice flat, have a reasonable standard of living and still put a decent wodge away for that glorious day I see a house I actually like.

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>>RichB, that £400k figure is a complete red herring. It might still apply to some people, but the true average return on a degree is probably barely a third of that. And again that's average, not median.

and of course for most people the cost of doing a degree is way higher than they realise. Take for example the value of the lost opportunity of 3 years? I know people that never went to university and are doing much better with their own businesses than friends of mine the same age that did go to uni. A particular friend of mine would probably have lost (or at least delayed) £180K of income (gross) if he'd gone to uni instead of setting his own business up.

A sensible alternative to going to university imho is to work the three years and put most of the income into a pension plan - which after 40 years (at say £10k for each of the 3 years) should amount to over £500k by retirement age (assuming around 7 or 8 % return per annum compounded - the stock market average). This and having no student loan debt to worry about. However, part of the problem may be that many who go to uni do so to delay getting a job...

I feel that all academic qualifications are losing their value. When I interview people I don't look at their educational record - I simply expect them to prove to me at interview and during testing that they are capable. This is in the IT industry.

ade.

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