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Not really sure if this is the right place to post this but thought I'd give it a shot. My husband has been accepted (and agreed to attend and paid the $250 non-refundable fee) Harvard for his graduate degree in Education. The have agreed to give him 1/3 of the tuition as a grant and the rest is split between subsidized and unsubsidized gov. loans. Then, of course there is the loan we are going to have to take out for our living expenses as I am a SAHM. I do plan on taking care of another child a large portion of the week at our home though. My major question is this....is the degree worth the debt?
 

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What is the debtload going to be? What could his salary expectations be upon completion of the degree? What are his salary possibilities like now?<br><br>
My gut reaction would be yes, it will be worth it. But that is the math I would do.
 

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Also, most graduate schools offer assistantships once you're enrolled for a semester or so... something to look into/think about? When I was in grad school I wasn't eligible the first semester, but second semester I got an assitantship that paid my entire tuition plus a stipend.<br><br>
Either way I'd say yes, probably worth it but also worth doing the math the pp mentioned.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>thismama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7987412"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">What is the debtload going to be? What could his salary expectations be upon completion of the degree? What are his salary possibilities like now?<br><br>
My gut reaction would be yes, it will be worth it. But that is the math I would do.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">:<br><br>
Dh took on substaintial debt to finish his grad work, for us it has been well worth it.
 

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Worth it for us!<br>
Will he be doing research/ assistant teaching? If not maybe he could tutor a few students for some extra cash?
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>thismama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7987412"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">What is the debtload going to be? What could his salary expectations be upon completion of the degree? What are his salary possibilities like now?<br><br>
My gut reaction would be yes, it will be worth it. But that is the math I would do.</div>
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For the most part I agree with this but as one of the few humans who actually went to grad school and got a M.Ed that has turned out to be useless, I would definitely have a good idea of what future earnings will be before racking up debt especially where you are planning on being a SAHM.<br><br>
Shay
 

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Though others may not agree, here's how I'd look at it.<br><br>
How much will you borrow to earn this degree? What will the monthly loan payment be and for how long?<br><br>
What can he realistically expect to make with this degree? What about if he doesn't get the degree?<br><br>
For us, if DH went back to school, we'd owe $70K more in student loans with monthly payments for 30 years. The payments started out low at just over $200/mo but increase over the first 6 years to $600+/mo, where they remain for the next 24 years.<br><br>
However, his income potential immediately jumped from an average of $40K/yr to $125-175K/yr upon completion of his degree. That kind of income increase made the substantial loan payment worth it in our opinion.<br><br>
We did not have to factor in complete loss of income during the time it took to get this degree as he went on active duty with the military to get his grad degree. That decision, of course, came with its own set of pros/cons. Otherwise, had he gone to a civilian program, we'd have taken into consideration the loss of all income from him for the years it took to obtain his degree.
 

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you have all been really helpful...<br>
we have checked into the loans repayment schedule and they would be about $500/month...<br>
currently we have about $250/month inloans...<br>
There are defintely less expensive programs and even at this late a date I know he could get into one of them....<br>
so is a Harvard degree worth the extra debt?<br>
I should also mention that dh is interested in experiential ed. and I fear this is a less than lucrative field...<br>
Is he going to get cornered into a job he hates because he has such big loans?<br>
Right now he gets paid about $35k but we have housing, health ins., and food (we live at a boarding school) which also allows him to see his children during the day (age 2 1/2 and 10 months)<br>
sigh<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:
 

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I'd recommend going to the library and reading up on the recent articles the Chronicle of Higher Education has had about the rising costs of gradutate loans in the field of education--they tend to be way out of proportion with other fields like the humanities, sciences, or other areas. They are very eye opening and may help offer another prospective on your decision.<br><br>
I think the financial "premium" for the Harvard brand that you'll be paying may be well wo rth it if your DH has an interest in going into administration such as the NEA, teaching at the university level, etc. If he wants to stay in the classroom, then I'd take a hard look at Harvard's program, ignore the prestige, and decide if you really are getting the bang for the buck compared to other programs.
 

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I have a crazy expensive grad degree. For me, it wasn't worth it. I compared my salary as a nurse (in one of the lowest paid areas of one of the lowest paid states) to what I *thought* I'd get with a masters (national averages). Reality was, I increased my salary by about 25%, not enough to cover my student loans. I got out of grad school poorer than I went in. And, in the meantime, nurse salaries went up crazily, and in my last job, I made less than people without a master's degree. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:<br><br>
My dh, on the other hand, got a MBA at a "b" school. For him, his salary doubled the first year he got out. More than worth it.<br><br>
I try to look at the good parts of my degree..... I moved away from my hometown. I met my dh in grad school. I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience. So, I don't regret it. But, monetarily, it wasn't worth it.
 

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When I was deciding where to go to grad school, I had a choice between a mid-tier but still quality program, completely paid for, and a top notch program, for which I'd have to take out about $40,000 in loans (I have nearly that amount from my top notch undergrad as well). Weighing the costs and benefits, I decided to go with the school that was paying me. The earning potential my masters gave me wasn't going to be much different between the A school and the B school, so why go into so much more debt? I figured that if I was going to do it, I'd have to be honest with myself about why I was doing it--status or prestige or whatever--and it just wasn't worth it.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>avengingophelia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7991385"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">When I was deciding where to go to grad school, I had a choice between a mid-tier but still quality program, completely paid for, and a top notch program, for which I'd have to take out about $40,000 in loans (I have nearly that amount from my top notch undergrad as well). Weighing the costs and benefits, I decided to go with the school that was paying me. The earning potential my masters gave me wasn't going to be much different between the A school and the B school, so why go into so much more debt? I figured that if I was going to do it, I'd have to be honest with myself about why I was doing it--status or prestige or whatever--and it just wasn't worth it.</div>
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Yep, same here. The upper-mid-tier school paid off like gangbusters. I would actually be in a worse position, career-wise, had I gone to the name school because it would have required me to quit my job, move, and borrow $50K-plus to live in NYC.
 

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For a lot of fields, I would say go with Harvard - hands down. However for an education degree, I think it would depend. What does he want to do with it? Will his future employers value a Harvard degree over a lower-tier school degree?<br><br>
Can he get an assistantship or further aid by talking to the financial aid department? Sometimes they have extra money sitting around that they give out when asked.
 

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I read something recently that said that there are few circumstance where paying for the "name" is worth it. I think that it put up as an example the top 10 or 20 CEOs and nearly all did not go to an Ivy League colleges.<br><br>
I think you need to look at the desired outcome. Is your dh's career goal such that only Harvard will make it happen? Or would a state school work just fine? Is it worth the debt load and possible sacrificing you being able to stay at home? Dh and I have decided that we rather have less than have the stress of debt or me working outside the home.
 

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I would say it's definitely worth it. I have an expensive Masters degree from a great private (but not Ivy League) school and just completed a Post-Graduate Fellowship through the Child Development Unit at Harvard Medical School/Boston Children's Hospital. The connection to Harvard has already opened many, many doors for me in my professional life. The fact is, we live in a society where it <i>does</i> matter where you go to school. Not to say that most people who don't go to Ivy league schools don't do well, but having the Harvard name on your degree does open doors that having graduated from other schools might not.<br><br>
I also don't believe that the decision should be just about money. Any money spent on education is an investment in <i>yourself</i>, and can't be quantified purely in financial terms. Good Luck!
 

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Is this a Ph.D program or an MA program? When I applied to graduate school for a Ph.D in linguistics, my undergraduate advisor told me to only go to a place where I would get paid to study. She said that grad school is hard enough without taking on loans. This may not be true for master's programs, but I think it is good advice for Ph.D. programs. Many programs do have funding through teaching assistantships and research assistantships, but in programs that have both Ph.D.'s and MA's the funding usually goes to the Ph.Ds first. In some places not all students get funding, which can make the program rather cutthroat. Some places, like the university I work for now, guarantee a certain number of years of funding. Find out exactly what Harvard offers and what the other schools offer.<br><br>
As for me, I was accepted at all but one of the schools I applied to, but only one was able to guarantee me full funding plus a stipend in my first year. I went with that one, and it was a totally financial decision. I'm really glad I did, because I ended up taking a loooong time to finish my degree. If I'd had to take out loans, I would owe a lot of money. The school paid for my tuition throughout, and gave me a stipend as well. It wasn't a huge stipend, but it paid for rent and food and necessities. Linguistics is a hard field to get a job in. I ended up realizing that reseach wasn't for me, so I took a non-tenure track lecturer position that I love. It pays less than tenure track, but I'm happy with it. If I had loans to pay off it would have been harder to take this job.<br><br>
Have your DH ask the admissions officer about where students are getting jobs after graduation. Most programs are willing to share this info. Ask if there are alumni he can contact as well. They should be able to tell him if they think the Harvard name was worth it and WHY.
 

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Wow! This thread is right along track with what I've been thinking about! My dh wants to go to Harvard too! He wants to study eco-theology, which isn't something he can study just anywhere. The places that have really good programs are Harvard, Duke, Yale and Boston University. I would rather stay north, as we currently live in NH and plan to return here after schooling. I don't think there are many lower tier programs that would be able offer courses he would be interested, but we haven't done much research yet. I'm glad to read all these responses, and good luck to you, mamakima! (Also, we work at a boarding school too--I'm writing from dorm duty!)
 

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My SIL did that program at Harvard. She taught for a year, SAH for eight, and was snapped right up when she went back on the job market.
 
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