Life with a Price Tag

The other day I was browsing my options for transferring to a different university next fall (the one I’m attending is fine but I’d like a university that specializes in my major) and tuition is a huge consideration for my household. Yes, I’m among the rest of the world of students that can’t afford to pay full tuition at any college or university. It doesn’t seem like a big deal until you stare at the numbers and interest rates of loans with your jaw on the floor. Those numbers are essentially your future debt. My GPA is high enough for a few scholarships and my community involvement does help to a certain degree, but there’s a whole lot of tuition that’s still on my plate. My top three colleges and universities have the yearly tuition above 27 thousand dollars a year, my university tuition now is below that cost! I know almost everyone is in a similar boat to pay for college, but this bothers me to no end. Let’s just say it now: It’s not fair! It’s not fair! I want to be able to afford a good portion (if not all of it) of college tuition and still receive an excellent education! I don’t want to forfeit one for the other! It’s not fucking fair that others can pay for college and I can’t without loans! Everyone should have the opportunity to go to college, but perhaps they need the opportunity to pay for it more.

Great, I have that tantrum out of my system. Let’s get down to business. I know that I will accumulate college debt over time to earn a bachelor’s degree, I don’t have other options. For the most part, I grudgingly accept that fact. Ew. Weeks ago I paid out-of-pocket for one of my college classes because finances didn’t kick in in time; eventually it worked out. But I thought I had a firm grip on managing money, (being a tight ass with spending) and looking at large numbers while comparing them with value. Paying a few hundred dollars for a class plus a textbook was a slap on the shin. I just spent how much for what? I truly needed that class for my degree. Now, I look at money much differently than before. Paying for my education comes before eating, bathing, talking and wearing shoes. Right now, I have time to save up for my future education, but I only have a few months to decide where to transfer. You know what that means? Which college am I willing to attend for the steep price. No matter which of the three colleges or universities I choose, the loans will most likely be in my name. That idea alone petrifies me. Education comes first, E. My friends have loans in their name (and their parents’ name) to pay for college, I might as well add my name to the pot.

It does bother my being when people purchase a fifty dollar sweatshirt with matching forty-five dollar sweatpants from their favorite lingerie store (yup, you which one I’m talkin’ ’bout). I just want to yell, “Do you know that you could have bought a textbook with that money? Do you know how many people that money could feed?!” Of course, maybe those people do donate and understand the cost of a college textbook; I shouldn’t make assumptions. It just bothers me that some people are starving and others can’t pay for their education, but spending a hundred bucks on two items doesn’t bother that particular consumer. I’m choosing the college that is the best value for what I need and you’re wasting money?! One of us needs to get priorities straight.

Acquiring a college education always includes hard work and determination but sometimes it gets lost along the way in terms of paying for tuition, Thankfully there are a few options to pay college tuition, but yikes it’s rough. I know that I will earn a bachelor’s degree but paying for it will be the difficult task.

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