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The Costs Of Going To Unversity

Submitted by Martin Martinez | RSS Feed | Add Comment | Bookmark Me! print

Going to university is one of the biggest decisions a young person has to make, and a lot can rest on the outcome. Do they leave college and head straight into a new career, learning and earning along the way? Or do they further their education and bulk up their qualifications in hope of a better paid job down the line? There are advantages and disadvantages to both; getting on the career ladder as early as possible is a good idea, and sometimes by the time a similar aged, degree qualified student is looking for the same type of job, the employer may opt for the candidate with the actual hands on experience anyway, rendering the extra qualifications useless.

However, a degree is not the only worthwhile factor to consider when weighing up the decision as to whether or not to head off to University. The experience gained from living away from your parents and having to fend for yourself is invaluable, and sets you in great stead for later life. Of course, with such freedom comes responsibility, and none are as important as learning to manage money, and coping with a small amount to live on each week. Budgeting is a helpful tool to have in all walks of life, and at university students will learn that every penny needs to be carefully accounted for or life will get extremely tough when you run out!

All students going to University can apply for a loan from their Local Education Authority (LEA) to help towards course fees and accommodation, etc. Depending on individual circumstances, tuition fees may be waived in some cases. Whilst student loans are a necessity for many, their very nature means they do have to be paid back, in full. So, by the time a student leaves university after their 3 or 4 year course, they could already have debts of over £14,000, without taking into consideration any other monies owed to banks from overdrafts and credit cards. Starting a new career with such large money worries hanging over you is at best worrying.

Students can take on jobs to help subsidize these expenses, but this can have an adverse effect on their studying. The best way to earn money whilst at University is to try to secure employment during the holidays, where the breaks can often be anything up to four weeks during term, and three months at the end of the year. This is plenty of time to accrue a decent lump sum that will support them during the following periods.

There is no doubt that a degree looks impressive on a CV, and are essential for many of the skilled jobs available in today’s society, such as doctors, scientists, architects and lawyers. They enable those who have them to start from a higher rung in the career ladder, rather than down at the very bottom, but it is worth remembering that nothing is guaranteed, and sometimes students who have just finished degree courses are without what they would call ‘meaningful’ employment in their preferred field for months, even years, before they finally make it to where they want to be – and still with a mountain of debt on their shoulders.

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