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Poll: Student "Loans"

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Student Finance:Debt or Investment

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#16 +Phouchg

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 17:02

They're both basically metaphor terms, but they kind of refer to different concepts.  So for that reason, it's not really meaningful to compare them.  We invest in things hoping for a high ROI, but that investment requires we give something up in the form of a debt.  We can apply to that basically any give-take in life, so they go hand in hand with each other.  An investment always requires some sort of debt, and a debt is created due to some sort of investment.

 

Yes, I suppose...




#17 Arpit

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 17:05

Isn't this kind of like taking out debt to invest in the stock market.  If you earn a greater return in the market, then it is debt because you owe money and investment because you're also getting a return on it.



#18 Brian M.

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 17:09

It's an entirely subjective question, depending on what you want to do in life.

 

If you want to work in a bank, or go on in academia, then you'll need it. Same goes for anything remotely medical and/or research based. There's no other choice.

 

For me, it's most definitely an investment. I did my undergrad (thankfully at the old fee caps), then a self funded masters. If I didn't have a student loan, there would be no way on earth I'd be able to afford to do that. I'm now doing a PhD (luckily, research council funded) - which wouldn't have been possible without my prior degrees (and therefore, without the student loan). I don't really care that I'll have a, quite frankly, tiny amount deducted from my salary for the foreseeable future. The knowledge, experience and colleagues I've gained over the past few years are priceless in comparison.

 

I do agree that far too many people get pointless degrees these days, though. One of my first lecturers said to me that "you're better off dropping out of a good degree from a good institution, than getting a first in a crappy degree from a poor institution, simply because it shows that you had the ability to get on the course in the first place."



#19 Biohead

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 17:20

It is a debt, but it can also be an investment... it depends what you're studying at the end of the day.

 

A lot of people I know went to uni for the sake of going to uni and studying a subject which doesn't really have much career prospects - for them they either love the subject or fell into the trap that they felt they had to go to uni. In these cases I wouldn't exactly call it an investment. Now a lot of these people go on to get jobs, which no doubt having a degree helped them to secure - but I wouldn't say that job would have been impossible to get without a degree.

 

Myself, I secured a position on a grad scheme straight out of uni with a very large company. I'm straight in at a management level, and from the go earn almost £10k a year more than new starters in my department. I've also got substantially more career prospects now in that I can move within the company fairly easily, even to a completely different role. The salary alone makes it so that uni for me has been an investment. I will have earned more than I paid for my course (4 year integrated Masters - so around £12k) within about 14 months.



#20 +imachip

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Posted 17 October 2013 - 17:27

It really does depend on your attitude towards it.  It's essentially borrowing money, and you payback on your PAYE (pay as you earn).  When I was a student I didn't give it a second thought because I needed that money to pay for uni accommodation (I wouldn't go otherwise).  So if you need it you need it, if you don't then don't.

 

IMO the media hasn't pushed out any agenda.  The education bodies offer the loans to ensure that students in hard up families can afford to go.   It wouldn't be fair to you to discourage others as you have no idea how that will affect them in later life.

 

Yes there are degrees that seem to offer narrow options for careers but it's the choice people make, it's not forced on them.



#21 Ambroos

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Posted 27 October 2013 - 00:38

I honestly think the whole concept is a bit strange. Coming from a country where the most expensive university doesn't charge over €600 a year (and it's reduced to less than €100 if your parents have a lower income), where you can go study at any university without having to apply and without entry requirements (yes, I'm serious), it seems absurd. Letting people educate themselves enriches your population and is the best thing a government can do for their country, by far!



#22 Growled

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Posted 27 October 2013 - 01:20

It's only an investment if you use the money wisely, same as any other investment. Otherwise it's just a debt.



#23 Xilo

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 00:35

Null vote and let me explain.

 

Student loans are only an investment if you get a degree that is worthwhile and desirable in the workforce.

 

Loans for an Engineering, Law, or similar degree is an investment. You most likely will end up making 6 figures within 10 years.

Loans for a Liberal Art degree such as English or Business is a debt. You will most likely be working retail or something completely irrelevant to your degree making minimum wage or enough to get by.