Sen Elizabeth Warren introduces bill to eliminate college loan debt

CharminTide

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Even then, UA's tuition is about $11K per year. Georgia is about $12k. Incredibly reasonable in my view of the world. If people in other parts of the country want to go to a schools that cost 2-5X+ that per year, why should we/I pay back their student loans? We shouldn't.
Total cost of attendance at UA is 30k annually for an in-state resident. Not sure why people think tuition is the only expense that requires loans.

https://financialaid.ua.edu/cost/
 

4Q Basket Case

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Here's some more data that goes back to the 70's.

https://college-education.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=005532

Takeaway point is that 4-year public college cost ~20% of the median income for men in 1971, versus 52% in 2016.
There's a couple of things going on there. No question that the cost of college has gone up. But so has the price of everything. So while college outpaced inflation for a while, BamaNation's numbers show that it's levelled off versus inflation.

Also, chanson78's excellent research shows that, while the cost of college may have risen, the inflation-adjusted amount of student debt per borrower hasn't changed much over a long period of time. Which would indicate that, as a whole, today's students are doing what we did -- working, getting scholarships, and cutting living expenses where they can. Having worked on the National Alumni Association's Scholarship Committee, I can tell you that there's a ton more scholarship money available today than there was when I was coming through, even adjusting for inflation.

It just strikes me as illogical to say, "Never mind the fact that your debt load isn't appreciably greater than previous borrowers', we're going to forgive what you owe because the cost of college has gone up."

You also make a good point about tuition not being the only cost of college. There's obviously room and board. But whether you're in college or not, you have to live somewhere and eat something. So unless you're living in your parents' basement (which has its own set of non-monetary costs), and they're not charging you for your food, the net marginal cost of college room an board is not much, if anything.

Tuition is a true marginal cost, as are books (including a computer there) and all the various fees that colleges charge for this, that, and the other thing over there. If I were benevolent dictator, I'd call the cost of college tuition, all fees, books, and a computer.
 
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CharminTide

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There's a couple of things going on there. No question that the cost of college has gone up. But so has the price of everything. So while college outpaced inflation for a while, BamaNation's numbers show that it's levelled off versus inflation.

Also, chanson78's excellent research shows that, while the cost of college may have risen, the inflation-adjusted amount of student debt per borrower hasn't changed much over a long period of time. Which would indicate that, as a whole, today's students are doing what we did -- working, getting scholarships, and cutting living expenses where they can. Having worked on the National Alumni Association's Scholarship Committee, I can tell you that there's a ton more scholarship money available today than there was when I was coming through, even adjusting for inflation.

It just strikes me as illogical to say, "Never mind the fact that your debt load isn't appreciably greater than previous borrowers', we're going to forgive what you owe because the cost of college has gone up."

You also make a good point about tuition not being the only cost of college. There's obviously room and board. But whether you're in college or not, you have to live somewhere and eat something. So unless you're living in your parents' basement (which has its own set of non-monetary costs), and they're not charging you for your food, the net marginal cost of college room an board is not much, if anything.

Tuition is a true marginal cost, as are books (including a computer there) and all the various fees that colleges charge for this, that, and the other thing over there. If I were benevolent dictator, I'd call the cost of college tuition, all fees, books, and a computer.
I really wish chanson's comprehensive reference went back farther than the mid-90's. That's when early Millennials were just starting to hit college, so it's not really able to assess the generational disparity that folks reference. And given the wage stagnation that's been occurring since the mid 1900's, I think percent of median income is a pretty decent measurement of the educational burden on an average family, and how it's changed over time.

Edit: Ha, you edited your post just as I'd edited mine to quote yours.

I agree that room/board/food/etc are costs you face regardless whether one is in college or not. But there's also a very different income expectation for someone not in college working full time versus someone in college who can work, at best, part time. So more of those expected costs get lumped into loans, and I don't think it's entirely reasonable to dismiss them when considering prolonged loan debt.
 
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DzynKingRTR

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Yes we were poor. As a result of the education that I obtained, I have been able to support my daughter and myself comfortably. I am a single dad who receives absolutely nothing from my ex. I learned a great deal from being “dirt poor.”
Same here. I will never understand why I was refused a pell grant, but growing up how I did made me who I am. I have co-workers that refer to me as "frugal". I am not really. I just have an appreciation for how things can go bad. When I was really young, both parents worked and we did pretty well. When I was 10, my dad got laid off, my mom lost her job as well, I was a sickly kid (asthma). We ended up having to move into a trailer (10 years). We had to borrow the money just to get that much. When I was very young, I made it my goal in life to not end up like that. I made sure I got an education. I worked harder than anyone. I took out student loans, I worked 2 jobs and went to school full time. It nearly killed me. If I had it to do over again, I would do the exact same thing.
 

RollTide_HTTR

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some time in the past 12 months I was reading about the student loan issue. I can't remember where the article was from but I think it may have been the Brookings Institute. Basically they said a few things....

Textbook costs have skyrocketed to a ridiculous degree, and those enrolled in 2 year colleges have a higher likelihood of using loans on textbooks.

Guess who is also the least likely to pay back there loans? people enrolled in 2 year colleges.

I'm sure there are specific majors, like teachers, where they have a harder time paying off loans because of low income jobs. But I don't remember much of what they said about students who only get a 4 year degree.

But, IIRC most people who go on to grad school or some equivalent tend to pay off their loans because they make enough to do so. The real issue (or at least a large portion of it) are those who go get associate degrees apparently.
 

chanson78

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I really wish chanson's comprehensive reference went back farther than the mid-90's. That's when early Millennials were just starting to hit college, so it's not really able to assess the generational disparity that folks reference. And given the wage stagnation that's been occurring since the mid 1900's, I think percent of median income is a pretty decent measurement of the educational burden on an average family, and how it's changed over time.
This is a completely fair point. I will admit that the https://trends.collegeboard.org site links I pasted focused on those age ranges. My own presumptions about millennials and the ages they entered college is skewed. I graduated HS in '94. So instead of inferring purely from numbers I wanted to have some basic frame of reference WRT my own experiences.

I think your point about changes in median income and wage stagnation is pointed out by the chart in this link. Changes in Family Income over Time

All that being said, here are the numbers from that same site going all the way back to 71-72 for both tuition/fees alone, as well as tuition/fees and room and board all in 2018 $. I can't do the analysis you were mentioning here till later this evening. The data below is from this here. There are a ton of different tabs in that spreadsheet. I haven't scoured it for some more valuable information, however I am sure that there is a valid way to point out the effect of wage and income disparity and how it has really hit millennials. I think what Charmin is trying to say is that my numbers have helped to inadequately skew perception through a confirmation bias. I was looking for information that supported my story that loan balances haven't really gone up and I managed to find it (my words not his). Interest also plays a huge part in all of this, because for every year you are not in a job with a wage/salary capable of helping pay down that principle, continues to dig the hole deeper. I don't think anyone on this board is willing to admit that the job market for college degreed kids is as flush as it was in the 70s/80s/90s. What I mean by that is that there are not the number of jobs available to absorb the vast increase in college degreed kids. That coupled with considering that the % of income in even standard blue collar jobs can't hope to keep pace with the college loan costs. Not to mention that people are retiring later and later due to their lack of planning for retirement has shrunk the available jobs even more.

TABLE 2. Average Tuition and Fees and Room and Board (Enrollment-Weighted) in Current Dollars and in 2018 Dollars, 1971-72 to 2018-19
Tuition and Fees in 2018 DollarsTuition and Fees and Room and Board in 2018 Dollars
Academic YearPrivate Nonprofit Four-YearOne-Year % ChangePublic Four-YearOne-Year % ChangePublic Two-YearOne-Year % ChangePrivate Nonprofit Four-YearOne-Year % ChangePublic Four-YearOne-Year % Change
71-72$11,330$2,660$1,180$18,140$8,730
72-73$11,7303.5%$3,01013.2%$1,38016.9%$18,5802.4%$9,3206.8%
73-74$11,660-0.6%$2,900-3.7%$1,54011.6%$18,320-1.4%$9,100-2.4%
74-75$10,870-6.8%$2,600-10.3%$1,430-7.1%$17,450-4.7%$8,420-7.5%
75-76$10,650-2.0%$2,510-3.5%$1,160-18.9%$17,110-1.9%$8,280-1.7%
76-77$11,1704.9%$2,7409.2%$1,2406.9%$17,5702.7%$8,5603.4%
77-78$11,150-0.2%$2,730-0.4%$1,2803.2%$17,520-0.3%$8,430-1.5%
78-79$11,3501.8%$2,650-2.9%$1,270-0.8%$17,6800.9%$8,250-2.1%
79-80$11,140-1.9%$2,550-3.8%$1,240-2.4%$17,270-2.3%$8,030-2.7%
80-81$11,030-1.0%$2,440-4.3%$1,190-4.0%$17,030-1.4%$7,770-3.2%
81-82$11,3102.5%$2,5002.5%$1,180-0.8%$17,4102.2%$7,9001.7%
82-83$11,9906.0%$2,6606.4%$1,2102.5%$18,4305.9%$8,2704.7%
83-84$12,8407.1%$2,9009.0%$1,34010.7%$19,5806.2%$8,6504.6%
84-85$13,4604.8%$2,9802.8%$1,4004.5%$20,4604.5%$8,9103.0%
85-86$14,3106.3%$3,0903.7%$1,5007.1%$20,8101.7%$9,0201.2%
86-87$15,3307.1%$3,2505.2%$1,5201.3%$22,6708.9%$9,3203.3%
87-88$15,6101.8%$3,3001.5%$1,6407.9%$23,1602.2%$9,300-0.2%
88-89$17,0109.0%$3,3601.8%$1,7003.7%$24,8007.1%$9,4801.9%
89-90$17,5403.1%$3,4402.4%$1,7000.0%$25,4402.6%$9,5600.8%
90-91$18,0502.9%$3,6907.3%$1,7603.5%$26,0502.4%$9,8002.5%
91-92$18,1500.6%$3,9005.7%$2,16022.7%$26,2600.8%$10,0802.9%
92-93$18,7403.3%$4,1807.2%$2,010-6.9%$26,9602.7%$10,4603.8%
93-94$19,2102.5%$4,4306.0%$2,1808.5%$27,5702.3%$10,8403.6%
94-95$19,9003.6%$4,6003.8%$2,2201.8%$28,0201.6%$11,2403.7%
95-96$20,1901.5%$4,6400.9%$2,200-0.9%$28,7202.5%$11,140-0.9%
96-97$20,8503.3%$4,7803.0%$2,3607.3%$29,4702.6%$11,4602.9%
97-98$21,6503.8%$4,8802.1%$2,4704.7%$30,4003.2%$11,7302.4%
98-99$22,7104.9%$5,0202.9%$2,390-3.2%$31,5903.9%$12,0002.3%
99-00$23,4603.3%$5,0801.2%$2,4904.2%$32,4702.8%$12,2101.8%
00-01$23,440-0.1%$5,1200.8%$2,390-4.0%$32,430-0.1%$12,3100.8%
01-02$24,6805.3%$5,3504.5%$2,290-4.2%$33,8804.5%$12,8204.1%
02-03$25,2702.4%$5,7407.3%$2,3402.2%$34,8002.7%$13,5305.5%
03-04$25,9702.8%$6,37011.0%$2,62012.0%$35,7102.6%$14,4306.7%
04-05$26,6802.7%$6,8307.2%$2,7705.7%$36,5502.4%$15,1404.9%
05-06$27,0601.4%$7,0803.7%$2,8101.4%$37,0701.4%$15,6303.2%
06-07$27,6302.1%$7,1801.4%$2,8100.0%$37,7701.9%$15,9001.7%
07-08$28,3302.5%$7,4904.3%$2,770-1.4%$38,7002.5%$16,4103.2%
08-09$28,4400.4%$7,5600.9%$2,730-1.4%$38,7200.1%$16,4600.3%
09-10$30,1205.9%$8,2709.4%$3,01010.3%$41,0406.0%$17,8308.3%
10-11$30,9402.7%$8,8206.7%$3,1705.3%$42,1602.7%$18,7004.9%
11-12$31,1000.5%$9,2404.8%$3,3104.4%$42,3500.5%$19,1402.4%
12-13$31,8902.5%$9,5102.9%$3,4604.5%$43,3902.5%$19,6002.4%
13-14$32,5001.9%$9,5900.8%$3,5001.2%$44,1901.8%$19,8301.2%
14-15$33,0901.8%$9,6800.9%$3,5300.9%$44,9001.6%$20,0201.0%
15-16$34,1503.2%$9,9602.9%$3,5901.7%$46,3303.2%$20,6603.2%
16-17$35,0802.7%$10,1301.7%$3,6200.8%$47,4902.5%$21,1002.1%
17-18$35,7201.8%$10,2701.4%$3,6701.4%$48,3801.9%$21,4001.4%
18-19$35,8300.3%$10,230-0.4%$3,660-0.3%$48,5100.3%$21,370-0.1%
 

CharminTide

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Ah, thanks for linking that data, chanson! I hope you know that I wasn't accusing you of any sort of malicious bias -- yours was just the most comprehensive data set I'd seen, and I didn't realize that at least part of it went back as far as the early 70s.

I just did a quick analysis using 4-year college costs (tuition, room, and board) from your link, and the average starting salary for a bachelor's degree (from here). And since I have literally no idea how you're making those tables look so nice, I just took a screenshot from Excel.

 

chanson78

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Ah, thanks for linking that data, chanson! I hope you know that I wasn't accusing you of any sort of malicious bias -- yours was just the most comprehensive data set I'd seen, and I didn't realize that at least part of it went back as far as the early 70s.

I just did a quick analysis using 4-year college costs (tuition, room, and board) from your link, and the average starting salary for a bachelor's degree (from here). And since I have literally no idea how you're making those tables look so nice, I just took a screenshot from Excel.
I snipped your picture from the quote, as with all this data these threads are already getting huge.

A more accurate picture might come from determining %age of student loan debt to income. I think that would give a better view into how much is actually necessary to spend as a %age of your income per year. Because if kids are really only taking 8-9K per year out in loans then they are having to make that 12-13K up per year elsewhere. Are they staying in school longer and having those loans build up principle over 5-6 years?


Edit:
Also we need to take into account that your chart is the best case scenario. Many people can't find a starter job that requires a BS degree and are working 2 or more jobs slinging coffee etc.
 

Crimson1967

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Holy smokes. I just checked and Liberty U's endowment is $1.4 billion, almost double UA's $887 million.
Not bad going from financially distressed institution ($100 million in debt) to a $1.4 billion endowment in what, 23 years?
That’s how they can afford to be an independent FBS team without being a national brand or by being forced to by being kicked out of their previous league.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Tidewater

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That’s how they can afford to be an independent FBS team without being a national brand or by being forced to by being kicked out of their previous league.
Growing up in Virginia in the 1970s, I remember hearing that Jerry Sr.'s goal for the Liberty Baptist College football program was to beat Notre Dame. People chuckled at the chutzpah. Now, that would be an eyebrow-raiser (they beat Baylor last year), but not unimaginable.
 

4Q Basket Case

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That trend continued for older age groups. When I was teaching at Virginia Tech, VT recruiters were "encouraging" female applicants to pursue STEM fields. A lot did. Then they hit the buzzsaw that is the College of Engineering (differential equations and dynamics being the biggest offenders) and decided that another degree might be a better fit. In fairness, a lot of the male students came to the same conclusion, but by the third year of engineering, the classes were mostly male.
Women get to choose their majors. You cannot make them stay in engineering.
When we see disparities in outcome, we may look for institutional discrimination to entry, but if there are no institutional barriers, then let the chips fall where they may.
But....but....but...diversity! Gender equity!

Whatever happened to equality of outcomes?

I smell white male privilege!


Thank goodness Bodhi is raising Lily to be confident and accountable, and to hold others to the level of accountability to which she holds herself.

Well done, Bodhi!
 

Tidewater

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But....but....but...diversity! Gender equity!

Whatever happened to equality of outcomes?

I smell white male privilege!


Thank goodness Bodhi is raising Lily to be confident and accountable, and to hold others to the level of accountability to which she holds herself.

Well done, Bodhi!
I had students that failed differential equations three times before deciding that PoliSci was their cup of tea.
 

uafanataum

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I had students that failed differential equations three times before deciding that PoliSci was their cup of tea.
There are a lot of students that cannot do that type of math but are still hard working, well meaning kids. However, I have seen multiple posts condemning kids for looking degrees that only require core math classes like history and English. I wonder what degree is likely to provide the income to repay a degree for hard workers that are just not mathematically inclined.
 

Tidewater

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I just checked how much it cost the federal government to finance debt already incurred. The NYT says "the cost of interest is on track to hit $390 billion next year." By 2028, it is going to hit $914 billion/year just in interest on already incurred debt.

Now if we had avoided spending $20 trillion more than the federal government collected in the past and kept all other federal expenditures the same, we could actually afford to assume $390 billion of student loan debt this year. And $390 billion in student loan next year, and so on until all student loan debt has been eliminated. Or we could spend $390 billion per year on infrastructure repairs or child care for working women or whatever.

Instead we spent above federal incomes in the past to the tune of $20 trillion. And having made that bed, we have to sleep in it.
 
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Tidewater

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There are a lot of students that cannot do that type of math but are still hard working, well meaning kids. However, I have seen multiple posts condemning kids for looking degrees that only require core math classes like history and English. I wonder what degree is likely to provide the income to repay a degree for hard workers that are just not mathematically inclined.
The young people I mentioned were great young people. It just took crushing their GPAs by failing that class three times (and it was a prerequisite for other math and engineering classes) to come to the conclusion that some other field would be better.
I was lucky. When I went to college, I wanted to study Russian language, politics, history, etc. because I wanted to be as effective as I could be at killing Soviet soldiers. Fortunately, only one school in the great state of Alabama offered a degree in Russian and Eastern European Studies, so off to Tuscaloosa I went.
I did not take a single math class for my undergraduate degree. Oddly, but I scored in the 98% percentile on the math portion of the GRE.
 

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