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Victoria

Writing Elephant

How much Student Loan Debt is too much?

As I ponder my next steps past my Bachelor’s degree, my husband is getting sticker shock. I understand that higher education in America has a hefty price tag. So much so that I am already approximately $30,000.00 (yes, I actually mean that many zeros) in before my first piece of paper with my name on it that means I am a hireable worker. I’ve even kept costs down by first going to the Community College of Rhode Island and then transferred a majority of my credits to Southern New Hampshire University. The Master’s program is now what awaits my final decision.

Do I go for a Master’s of Arts Degree? Or the Master in Fine Arts Degree?

Both degrees get me into the field I want. Teaching at the community college level with writing as a side gig (and a full-time career to supplement income).

But what is better for me, the student?

From what I can tell before speaking with my advisor from SNHU is that the MFA program is better suited to a person who wants to write, not just the person who wants to teach. The only drawback is that the program is about $15,000 more than the MA program and that is just after a rough estimate. But it has a residency program that rivals its counterpart the MA program.

I have a total of four classes left of my BA program and a possible six-month break before I have to decide. But the issue I’m currently facing, because my husband is a super-realist, is the issue of debt payback. Approximately, at the end of everything, the total price tag for both degrees is around $80,000 to $100,000. That includes a tiny amount of interest. Again I am not a math major but a writing major. Numbers aren’t my forte. So I ask my audience, is this too much debt? Those who have graduated is it all worth it in the end?

Will I die under the weight of the imposed debt sentence?

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