A recent report by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York puts the outstanding student loan debt in the United States at $956 billion. This is a staggering amount that many new university students aren’t even aware of and really makes one question if going to university is still worth it.
In today’s environment of fiscal austerity and skyrocketing tuition, many students are graduating with an average debt load of $32,450 per student, which is a lot for people who are just starting to build their careers to have to deal with it. Undoubtedly, the skyrocketing costs of going to university is a very big concern not just for students, but for business leaders and politicians. The chart belows shows that tuition increases have way outpaced the rate of inflation, which is a little baffling.
But, then again, if you take into account shrinking state and provincial budgets, which have forced shifting of the cost of higher education back on to students themselves, it really shouldn’t be so surprising that tuition has been going up.
In the end, going to university today is less affordable than it has been for previous generations and it’s leading to what many see as economically unsustainable and socially unfair student debt loads. After all, unfair student debt was at the heart of the ‘Occupy’ movement. The whole situation is definitely garnering more attention and is being called a crisis by some. High debt loads is likely leading to lower degree completion rates which has significant implications from both an economical and societal perspective.
So, what do you think? Is going to college or university still worth It? Share your thoughts with other students below!