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Do you feel like you Need to pay for the kids' college? - Page 4

Poll Results: Do you feel like paying for college is a requirement for parents?

  • 49% (70)
    Yes, I need to pay for each of my children's college education.
  • 45% (65)
    I will help, but they need to fund the bulk of it.
  • 4% (7)
    No, I expect them to pay for it on their own.
142 Total Votes  
post #61 of 120
I don't think college is the all-important path to success, the only way to get a good education, or the best way to build character. I come from a family that strongly believes all those thigns, and I have vehemently disagreed for as long as I can remember.

BUT there is no denying the fact that a college degree gives you more options, a lot more. I am all about options.
post #62 of 120
Originally Posted by kofduke
JMHO, but to me college is a need of young people. Just as I wouldn't let a baby cry in a crib, I would not let my young adult go without the eduction he needs to get started in the world.
I totally agree. And I think it's going to be even more the case when my son is college-aged. Around here, it's practically impossible to get even an entry -level job without an undergraduate degree - and sometimes a graduate degree is required.

I will do whatever I can to help my son through college. Of course, no one helped me and I fully expect I'll still be paying back my crushing debt when it's time for him to go. Regardless, I'll be making his education a top priority in my financial planning once I'm out of school and gainfully employed.

No, one doesn't need to get an advanced degree to build character. And yes, there are many paths up a mountain. But the days where a person could work their way up the ladder without a degree (or even multiple degrees) are gone in most places.

Btw, I'd also fully support my son if he wanted to go to trade school or follow a less expected path (taking some time off, apprenticing). But I'd still encourage him to get a college degree, as well. I just think it's going to be absolutely vital to his ability to do well in the world.
post #63 of 120
I didn't vote because none of the options were right for me. I don't feel I need to pay for my kids college, but if we can, then I will. DH has payed for his college all 5 years (he graduates in May) and while it's been tough, it's been a great learning expierence.

Starting in May, we'll open up a college fund for Sarah. We get one check a month from my mom (it's my dad's child support payments, which she didn't get until I was 20) and that will go to Sarah and any other children. If what she has in that account, won't pay for school, then we might help her out, but no matter what, she'll have to work.

Just our way of doing things.
post #64 of 120
I plan on doing what my parents did for me. They paid for 100% of my first year. 50% of my second and I was responsible for my 3rd and 4th years.

That way I could concentrate on doing well initially and then work on finding funds second.

When I was in college, it seemed like the kids that had to pay their way did better. The ones that were there cuz their parents basically paid their way, didn't seem to care as much.

Knowing that I needed to pay for each quarter/semester on my own, encouraged me to finish in 4 years. Almost all the kids I knew, including my own brother that had more financial help from their parents, just took their sweet time or didn't finish at all :

Yep it would have been nice to graduate without any debt but to be honest, it really helped me 'grow up' to be treated like an adult by my parents. Plus, paying off the debt was a great feeling of accomplishment for me.
post #65 of 120
Absolutely. Of all the things my parents and dh's parents did for us, allowing us to have a college education without starting out adult life deeply in debt was the most precious.

That's not to say we'll be able to pay full-freight at Princeton. We can't. But we will pay for them to be able to attend a college in our excellent state university system.
post #66 of 120
My choice was not in the poll...

I feel it is the state's responsibility to fund education, so I will expect my children to seek help from the state. I don't see it as a parental responsibility and don't plan on saving any money toward it. (Although, I will help out in other ways, such as buying textbooks or letting the children live at home.)

Educated people benefit the state by the higher taxes they pay, so I think the state is wise to invest in higher education.

There are also loans available to virtually everyone...
post #67 of 120
Yikes. GB, I agree with you 100% that it *should* be the state's responsibility, but you don't actually think the state is going to do that, do you? The trend is that state-funded schools are dying or becoming privatized. My mom has worked for 20+ years for the community college system in WA, and honestly I will be completely shocked if that system still exists when my child is ready to start college. I don't think there is a single state that is actually putting *more* funding into higher education, but there are quite a few that are doing less. I can understand a number of reasons not to plan to fund your children's college... but counting on the state is not a good one IMO.
post #68 of 120
GB, do all educated people pay higher taxes?

And why is the state in anyway responsible for giving my children a formal education (after highschool).

Our children are our responsibility, not the govt's.
post #69 of 120
Originally Posted by Marsupialmom
1. I don’t think everybody needs college, especially right out of high school. I do think our students would be better served by learning that college is not the only way to a life skill. My dh works with a kid that is getting ready to graduate. He says he is not college material but he loves to cook. Nobody told them we have a culinary school locally. There are so many paths to an education. Many times life can give you a better understanding of likes, wants, and dreams.

2. As it stands now we won’t be able to fund it by ourselves. We will help as much as possible. They will have a home. We will do our best to help find them financial aid. They are going to have to perform at levels that gets scholarships and grants. I do think our struggles as a family to pay for any secondary education will help them appreciate it more.
Of all the replies, I agree with this the most. College is a luxury, not a necessity. It doesn't guarantee you a better job or higher income. I would much rather my children learn marketable skills than have a college education (like I have, like my parents had, that none of us ever used in the workplace).
If they do wish to go to college, we will help as best as we can, but I'm not fooling myself thinking we can pay for it all 100%. Which leads me to question the poll's results, because I wonder if members at MDC are really that well off financially that 47% say they are paying 100% for their kid's future college education???

I'm not saying I regret finishing college, I count that as one of my greatest life acheivements. But it never got me a better job or higher wages. My parents didn't pay one penny of it either. That might be part of why it is so meaningful to me. I did it all myself, for myself, and it was totally worth it.
post #70 of 120
SB3, of course educated people do not ALWAYS pay higher taxes, but on the whole they do tend to. They tend to get higher paying jobs (that being one of the biggest reasons people go to college, of course) which means more income tax, more spending, more investing, less dependence on social services, all those things we supposedly want for our economy.

A better educated populace is a benefit to the entire society. I absolutely agree that the government should fund it.

If I'm not mistaken Canada contributes substantially to higher education, maybe some Canadians will hop in and explain how it works up there.
post #71 of 120
GM, I know what you are saying, and know that to be true, for the most part anyway.

But there are many people who have received educations and pursued other paths less lucrative and are not contributing to the higher tax base.
post #72 of 120
Originally Posted by Dragonfly
And I think it's going to be even more the case when my son is college-aged. Around here, it's practically impossible to get even an entry -level job without an undergraduate degree - and sometimes a graduate degree is required.
There are other jobs out there besides sitting in a cubicle working for a huge company! Is that all you hope for your children? My oldest DD wants to be a pilot, and an artist - neither of those careers require a four-year degree! Both require specialized training and lots of determination and hard work, but neither require a college degree, and I'd be much more proud of her if she does that than if she works for big industry at a job she hates.
post #73 of 120
Stafl, doesn't being a pilot require a ton of training? And doesn't that training cost money? I guess when I read "college" I don't think Bachelors of Arts/Science, I think "post-secondary education in a formal situation which costs money."

Uh, and I can think of about 400 jobs that require a college degree other than sitting in a cubicle working for a huge company.

Also with the artist example - I have a very good extremely talented friend who has been trying for 20 years to make a living off his art. It hasn't happened yet. For most of that time he has been either a waiter or a bartender. At 40 yrs old he is really sick of carrying around heavy plates and kissing ass for tip. He's in debt up to his eyeballs from various medical problems he's had, and he has no marketable job skills outside of food service. He has no options. I don't want my son to be in his situation.
post #74 of 120
Me too.

And my friends husband is a pilot, and he has a degree in aeronautics.

And another friends husband is a "for fun" pilot 9he is a computer programmer during the day)....and it took him alot of $$ to get his private pilots license.
post #75 of 120
And why is the state in anyway responsible for giving my children a formal education (after highschool).
Why is the state responsible for educating high-schoolers? Why is high school a requirement, and college optional?

If you believe your children are your responsibility alone, I assume all your children will attend private school or be homeschooled, since you apparently don't want taxpayers funding their education. If that works for you, that's great. But what about parents who can't afford it? Does this lead to another one of those arguments that says if you can't afford private school and college, you should not have children?

I know the state cannot be expected to support education. They currently pay for mine, but even that is not a certainty. But I think it's still worth it to try and get all you can from them. And if that doesn't work, there are the loans. Or scholarships...

If I was in the kind of financial position to pay college expenses, I'd much rather put that money toward a down payment on a house. Think about it - there are funds to help people pay for education; there are no funds to help people buy houses. If a child flunks out of college, does not find a job with his degree, or changes his mind halfway through, the parents and the child lose that money. If the child is not happy with the home he buys, at least he can sell it. If parents can afford it and want to really help out, I think helping to buy a home makes more sense than funding college.

Or they could do both...
post #76 of 120
I hope that Dh and I can pay for them to go to school, or pay for part, or help how ever they need help. Especially for my daughter. I don't begrudge my son, and I plant to help him as much as possible as well..but ..well..I want Emily to be able to take care of herself. I want my daughter to be able to support herself, and have health care, and a home of her own, and what ever she wants from life.

I have a small savings acocunt for each of them, and it is for school, not just college, but highschool as well( sports fees, music, etc.) I wish we had more for them. i f I could convince people to quit giving them crappy dollar store gifts and give us money instead, I would be a happy camper.

This is sort of OT, but my family didn't think educating women was all that important. My grandmother, great grandmother and Mother all got married as teenagers. All had babies as teen agers. My Mom barely graduated highschool, my gramma did not get past 8th grade, and my great gramma did graduate and then got married and Pg right quick. My sister and my cousin are the 1st women in our fmaily to ever graduate highschool and then go to college. My cousin came close to graduating, my sister dropped out after 2 years. One of my great grandmothers got married at 17, another at 15, and another at 16. Guess how soon after that they became mothers ? My Mom got maried at 18, pregnant at 19, and 2 months after ehr 20th birthday, I was born.

I managed to just barely graduate from highschool. There was no way I was going to get a loan, or a grant, or a scholarship. I had no idea what I was going to do with my life. It felt as if leaving highschool was basically the end of the line for me, and I was petrified. I couldn't think of what I was going to do now.

Neither I, nor anyone else in my family knew how to go about getting someone into college. It was an entirely unknown land for us all. I wanted to go, I thought about it, but I had no idea how I was going to pay for it if I did even manage to get in. It seemed like a magic place that only special people could get into , and I was not one of those special people.

Once I went up to Edinborough university, a college I wanted to go to ( In PA.) and I was there and pretrified. i felt like I had entered another realm, I saw so many people, so many buildings..it was overwhelming and I was so scared. I was there for day, adn I was so happy to get back home..but I also thought baout that place day and day out for a year afterwards. I had no idea how to get in, no one in my family knew..and I felt like I was stuck and my life was over.

Now I am 29 years old, 2 kids, a less than wonderful marriage, and no education, and no job skills, and nothing to offer to the world if tomorrow i had to go and search for ajob. I would end up working for minumum wage, no health care, unable to do much past survival at its most basic.

I will do everything in my power to help her. I want both of my children to succeed in their lives. i want both of my children to have a good life..but thinking about my daughter not having that which I did not have gives me nightmares. I want her to have a good life. If all she does is become , oh, a secretary in a drs office, I am ok. Just so long as she has the skills to do so and support herself and save something for a rainy day and be happy and content with her life. I don't expect her to be a high powered attorney, or a neurosurgeon, or the Queen of all..I just want her to be able to take care of herself.

My life, as it is, is my worst nightmare for my daughter. I fret about her as an adult woman quite often to myself...hoping and praying that when she is older that I will have been able tot each ehr to love knowledge as I have taught my son, adn that we will have been bale to keep lit what ever flame it is she carries as a dream for her life.

I also will be a real hard ass and tell her she can get married, have babies, etc, but NOT until she has some sort of training/degree under her belt. I will watch them for her if she wants to go back to work part time, I will encourage and support ehr how ever I can..but I will be heartbroken if she repeats the history of the women of our family.
post #77 of 120
But there are many people who have received educations and pursued other paths less lucrative and are not contributing to the higher tax base.
Is the amount of tax one pays the determining factor in whether college was "worth it?" What about people who work very hard and do a lot of good for their community, but don't make very much money? I'm talking about teachers, nursing home attendants, social workers, etc.

Is someone who sits in an office looking for inconsistencies in numbers and paying 30% of his income in taxes doing a lot more for society than someone who takes care of old people for $17,000 a year and pays no income tax?
post #78 of 120
GB, my children do go to public school. I am a homeowner, taxpayer and in my state, i pay a state tax too. so the govt isnt giving me anything on that end.

And you make a point.....not sure how i feel about it...about how the govt pays for education up till highschool, then not after.

I am not bailing on this issue, but my daughter is waiting for me in the car....its her senior luncheon, and she is a bit anxious.

Is the amount of tax one pays the determining factor in whether college was "worth it?"
post #79 of 120
DH and I will share some of the burden, but don't feel it's our responsibility to put our kids through college.

Not that we feel college is a necessity, either. DH never went but has a successful tech company. We want to encourage our kids to do what they feel in their heart they are here to do. If that involves a college education we will help out, but there are plenty of things they can do, too.

It seems like so many of my peers went to college because they were getting a free ride and they end up dropping out or they get a degree in something that they never end up using. We have a friend with a physics degree who works in a gas station.
Of course, this is just my experience.

Anywhooooo, I feel like my children should do everything they can to make their dreams reality. I think it'll mean more to them. And we'll always be there to pitch in when/where we are needed.
post #80 of 120
Reading Avonlea's post reminds me of this attitude that people have that college is SO EXPENSIVE! It's sad that many people are so unaware of the resources out there.
I worked full time as a manager at Baskin Robbins and was able to afford to live on my own and attend community college full time. I really scraped by. I only spent $100/month on food in Hawaii. But then I got straight As and made the Dean's List and was granted a full year tuition waiver. I researched my options and found a private school that I wanted to attend. I talked to their Financial Aid Department and, with their help, discovered a way that I could attend a $25,000/yr school in my financial situation., etc., etc. Where there's a will, there's a way.

I hope my kid doesn't think college is a HUGE EXPENSIVE THING and feel discouraged. Anyone can go to college. You just have to be resourceful and you may not be able to afford your top choice of college. Yeah. I wanted to go to Franklin College in Switzerland. But there's absolutely no financial aid for that one and it would cost around $35,000 minimun to live for a year and attend the school.
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