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Student Loans - Lies To Children

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So - talking to my niece about her starting Uni this year, and the whole student loan/debt thing. She did a 'free' year last year, and told me that they had one - just one - talk on it organised by the higher education body. Some student already at Uni came along and talked to the students thinking of going on to full Uni. The messages he gave were:

  1. Not to worry about the debt as it's not a lot of money over your lifetime
  2. Everyone is doing it
  3. You only have to pay it back if you go about a threshold, which is a lot and not worth worrying about
  4. The government will probably wipe out the debts at some point, right?
  5. er...
  6. thats it

She said all her friends thought it was no biggie.

Disgusting. I talked to her about how interest compounding works even when you are below the threshold, how inflation means that what seems a high figure to her now will not seem that way in 10 years, and how the government can change anything they want about the terms. I explained how when I left Uni - when it was mostly free - it still took me 3 years to clear my card debts from living expenses, and I missed out on travel etc as a result. I also explained how you can't even get rid of the debt if you go bankrupt. I added on how would she like to be 30, with still 40,000 debt, and unable to afford a baby with her then partner because the goverment takes the money right out of your pay packet.

She seemed much more worried at the end of the conversation, and her mother is now going to look to pay the loan off immediately (I still think it's mad for her to go to Uni, her mother should just give her 50,000 for three years travel around the world doing internships in her field of art but that's their choice).

Now, my niece is very lucky that her parents will pay off the debt. What about the other poor bastaRts who don't have that option? How many are entering a lifetime of debt slavery and diminished options due to the lies they are being told?

I'm thinking of asking for details of who gave the talk and the content, to see if I can put an official complaint in somewhere. Moreover, anybody know of any websites / organisations in the UK who we (HPCers) can point young people to so they understand just how much they are being shafted? Looking at the NUS website it's all sweetness and light with minimisation of bad news (only repay above.....only 21 pounds per week....etc). I guess the NUS is a VI in keeping student numbers up?

Oh, and the house price link (so this stays on the first page) is that I wrapped it up by saying that I would never have been able to afford my first flat if I had had a debt from University on top of other costs in London.

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It's a graduate tax dressed up as a loan.

Can't get rid of it through bankcruptcy.

It's written off after 30 years - what other loan is written off after a certain time without having to go bankrupt?

The repayments have no relationship to the size of the debt (however big it gets) only to the size of your income. That's not how other debts work - it is, however, how income tax works.

Edit: who can spell at this time of the morning?

Edited by Snugglybear

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1.Not to worry about the debt as it's not a lot of money over your lifetime

2.Everyone is doing it

3.You only have to pay it back if you go about a threshold, which is a lot and not worth worrying about

4. The government will probably wipe out the debts at some point, right?

5.er...

6.thats it

Was the talk given by David Willets MP, Secretary of State for Universities and Science?

I've seen him on TV, and that was exactly what he said.

Edited by ingermany

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It's a graduate tax dressed up as a loan.

Can't get rid of it through bankcruptcy.

It's written off after 30 years - what other loan is written off after a certain time without having to go bankrupt?

The repayments have no relationship to the size of the debt (however big it gets) only to the size of your income. That's not how other debts work - it is, however, how income tax works.

Edit: who can spell at this time of the morning?

I sort of agree - at the moment. There's a lot a debt being run up and the government is pretty brassic and writes the rules.

The government gets a pretty bad deal on it at the moment - there's no incentive to keep the debt low and to target degree's that'll boost your earnings afterwwards.

You could make the case its an arts+humanities lecturers employment scheme.

Maybe the debt should be split 50/50 with the student and the university, underwritten by the lecturers pension?

After all, if he degree is really worth it all those Art History lecturers will retire on million$$$$

To some i.e. my lazy ar5e sister, the tax hurdle is used as an excuse for her not to make an effort to earn more money.

She says 'If I earn over xxx then I'll have to back my student loan'

She's as dumb as a box of spanners (art graduate).

I have a feeling that that attitude applies to quite a lot of people.

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To some i.e. my lazy ar5e sister, the tax hurdle is used as an excuse for her not to make an effort to earn more money.

She says 'If I earn over xxx then I'll have to back my student loan'

She's as dumb as a box of spanners (art graduate).

I have a feeling that that attitude applies to quite a lot of people.

I think so...

Regarding the current student loans- i really can't see how the majority of them will be paid back.. not even close.

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I don't see how the cost to study what for most is part-time can be so expensive.....if there was more competition in the market the high costs can and would be so much less.......a state run monopoly.

Would it be worth studying overseas if they can't offer our home students a better value for money deal? ;)

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So we have a wild situation where going to university for 3 years is great as long as you don't earn over £21K, which kind of mitigates the point of going to university.

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So we have a wild situation where going to university for 3 years is great as long as you don't earn over £21K, which kind of mitigates the point of going to university.

Start your own LTD.......I am sure you could sell yourself your own degree. ;)

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Study abroad: Where to study in Europe... in English

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/universityeducation/9447458/Study-abroad-Where-to-study-in-Europe...-in-English.html

10. Denmark

There are 188 options for studying master's degrees in the land of Sarah Lund – a third more than there were just one year ago – with public universities typically charging no tuition fees for European students.

9. Finland

Finland has one of the best education systems in the world, with almost half of its population holding at least an undergraduate degree – and if you don't mind the Arctic climate you can join its ranks, with 246 master's programmes taught in English. That's a steady rise from just 42 on offer back in 2007, and again public universities in Finland typically don't charge tuition fees for European students.

8. Belgium

With the Eurostar taking you to Brussels in less than two hours from London, enrolling on one of Belgium's 252 English-taught master's could even be a more convenient option than some far-flung British universities. Tuition fees at public universities in Belgium tend to be around €600 per annum.

7. Italy

Want to enjoy la dolce vita while bolstering your academic credentials? Try one of Italy's 256 English-taught master's options. Incredibly, there were only seven such courses in the whole of Italy as recently as 2007. Public universities in Italy usually charge around €1,500 per annum for European students.

6. Switzerland

You'd think this wealthy Alpine country had enough languages on its plate, what with French, German and Italian all in common usage – but Switzerland now offers 237 English-taught master's degrees. Tuition fees in Switzerland vary between cantons, but are usually between €500 and €4,000 per year.

5. France

Famously protective of their native language, it's not like the French to humour les rosbifs. But when it comes to higher education it seems English is making inroads – 346 master's degrees in France are taught in English, compared with just 11 as recently as 2007. Master's degrees at French public universities charge start at around €250 per annum.

4. Spain

Spanish may be rivalling English as the most widely-spoken European first language in the world these days, but its universities seem to have their focus squarely on the English-speaking world. 395 English-taught master's abound in Spain – incredibly, one year ago there were only 89. Public universities charge European students around €1,500 per annum in tuition fees.

3. Sweden

The Scandinavian countries are well-represented on this list, and foremost among them is Sweden, where 707 English-taught master's degrees are on offer. No tuition fees are charged for European students.

2. Germany

Germany has the second-most English-taught master's degrees of any mainland European country, with 713. Tuition fees vary between the different Bundeslands, with some costing up to €1,100 per year, others charging nothing at all for European students. However in terms of the number of institutions offering such courses it is far ahead of the rest of Europe. 144 German universities and colleges teach master's in English, compared with just 45 from our winner...

1. Netherlands

Holland, the Netherlands, Nederland... call it what you will, the Low Countries are the place to be for studying a master's in English on the Continent. An impressive 869 master's degrees in Holland are taught in English, albeit at just 45 institutions. Maastricht University has reported a tenfold rise in applications from Britain over the last year, with demand set to soar further when figures for 2012 are released. Typical tuition fees are around €1,720 per year.

The Telegraph's 1-10 ranking seems a bit random, but adding up the numbers:

246+246+252+256+237+346+395+707+713+869 = 4267 courses

If we assume around 50 students on each course thats 213,350 graduates per year.

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Study abroad: Where to study in Europe... in English

.....Ta, ...other options out there if you DYOR, nobody has to do it one way, but of course the people selling you something won't tell you that. ;)

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I don't see how the cost to study what for most is part-time can be so expensive.....if there was more competition in the market the high costs can and would be so much less.......a state run monopoly.

Would it be worth studying overseas if they can't offer our home students a better value for money deal? ;)

Would we not end up with a similar system as the US with fees of £20,000 per annum? I have read of students being financially crippled after leaving higher education in the US. I don't really understand the industry so I don't know.

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Did not realise there were so many realistic Euro options! Why on earth would you study here?

Because you didn't realise there were so many realistic Euro options :)

Edited by SpectrumFX

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Would we not end up with a similar system as the US with fees of £20,000 per annum? I have read of students being financially crippled after leaving higher education in the US. I don't really understand the industry so I don't know.

...a cartel you mean?.....I don't know much about higher education because I didn't do any, but I did work in an industry that provided free education/training, and paid for distance learning and paid you whilst doing it, but I do know that education is big business and I do know whatever you learn doing some new created course/degree will not give you any guarantee of a job relevant to what was studied for......maybe you could get a refund?....or is the refund not reaching the £21k or so level.....hence you get it for free, whereas it was once free and they paid you for your time training you to upskill.......employers know well trained (they way they want you trained) and competent workers are good for business and worth that time and investment, win for them.win for you. ;)

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Uni fees are a huge bubble that will burst at some point in the future.

Luckily our politics and economics departments are fully warning their colleagues of the risks and that it's a bubble. Imagine how incompetent they would be if they aren't....

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Sensible kids should just lie about having a degree, many firms recruiting don't really need it they just use them to whittle down the CVs.

And in 20 years of my working life nobody has ever asked me to prove I have one.

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Sensible kids should just lie about having a degree, many firms recruiting don't really need it they just use them to whittle down the CVs.

And in 20 years of my working life nobody has ever asked me to prove I have one.

Same here nobody has ever asked me what qualifications I got a school let alone asked to see them.....I can't even remember for sure what I passed or didn't pass, I don't have any certificates to prove anything, can't ever remember been given any.......I do have a swimming certificate and a few brownie badges if that would be of interest. ;)

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Sensible kids should just lie about having a degree, many firms recruiting don't really need it they just use them to whittle down the CVs.

And in 20 years of my working life nobody has ever asked me to prove I have one.

Have a google of "lying on job application form" to see where this can take you.

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I don't see how the cost to study what for most is part-time can be so expensive.....if there was more competition in the market the high costs can and would be so much less.......a state run monopoly.

Would it be worth studying overseas if they can't offer our home students a better value for money deal? ;)

I am guessing that the lecturer's wages are a drop in the ocean compared to the whole budget. Forever demolishing and rebuilding cutting edge architectural buildings, a host of security staff with vehicles, a massive team of estate workers to cover the pleasure park style grounds. Huge blocks to cover admin workers. Fabulous wages for admin workers. There's the public sector budget and then there is the la la world of the university budget.

Was it ever about education on a couple of lectures a week from October-April. Nope a human right of passage set up by Blair for kids to enjoy. And a massive booost to local GDP that host these fun factories.

Edited by crashmonitor

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I am guessing that the lecturer's wages are a drop in the ocean compared to the whole budget. Forever demolishing and rebuilding cutting edge architectural buildings, a host of security staff with vehicles, a massive team of estate workers to cover the pleasure park style grounds. Huge blocks to cover admin workers. Fabulous wages for admin workers. There's the public sector budget and then there is the la la world of the university budget.

Was it ever about education on a couple of lectures a week from October-April. Nope a human right of passage set up by Blair for kids to enjoy. And a massive booost to local GDP that host these fun factories.

....and the worse thing about it all we bought it all.....or some did. ;)

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It's the new "sub-prime" debt crisis bubble being inflated. You only have to be a reader of zerohedge to see that where America leads we are sure to follow. As previous posters have said it's more akin to a graduate tax than a "normal" debt. I have a son about to embark on a second degree course and he has no hope of ever paying back either of his student debts and will doubtless think twice about earning above the threshold for debt repayment if it means that any extra earnings will be swallowed up in payments. Needless to say at the age of 30 he doesn't even consider the "property ladder".

Teachers have a VI in education and for years have pushed uni as the only valid choice post school. They are guilty of not spelling out the consequences of running up huge debts probably because until recently mostly they didn't have these debts themselves and their own grasp of financial literacy is often sadly lacking.

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It's the new "sub-prime" debt crisis bubble being inflated. You only have to be a reader of zerohedge to see that where America leads we are sure to follow. As previous posters have said it's more akin to a graduate tax than a "normal" debt. I have a son about to embark on a second degree course and he has no hope of ever paying back either of his student debts and will doubtless think twice about earning above the threshold for debt repayment if it means that any extra earnings will be swallowed up in payments. Needless to say at the age of 30 he doesn't even consider the "property ladder".

Teachers have a VI in education and for years have pushed uni as the only valid choice post school. They are guilty of not spelling out the consequences of running up huge debts probably because until recently mostly they didn't have these debts themselves and their own grasp of financial literacy is often sadly lacking.

Kind of backs up my opinion that students don't see it as real debt.....he doesn't see himself paying it back, will think twice about earning over the threshold. I have a niece that makes the same points, who will embark on her second year in October.

Teachers may be the pushers, but they also appear to be successful in getting students hooked. Your son being on his second course.

Granted that the economic situation may offer him few alternatives.

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She seemed much more worried at the end of the conversation, and her mother is now going to look to pay the loan off immediately (I still think it's mad for her to go to Uni, her mother should just give her 50,000 for three years travel around the world doing internships in her field of art but that's their choice).

Great piece of advice, will use that when my kids are old enough!

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