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Debt Load Extraordinaire

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tankenka View Drop Down

Joined: 24/September/2011
Location: North Vancouver
Points: 1
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    Posted: 24/September/2011 at 2:29am
I realize, before I describe where I'm at and where I will be when I'm done in 19 months, that I have certainly 'earned' this debt in loans.

I have an Associate of Arts - General Studies, and an Associate of Arts - Creative Writing, and I am in my 3rd year Liberal Studies Bachelor of Arts. Why? I'm aiming (eventually) for a Ph.D. in both Creative Writing AND Liberal Studies so that I can teach effectively at private (elite) universities overseas.

However, my loans 'run out' in 19 months.

By 'run out,' I mean that I've reached my lifetime maximum number of applicable months.

Currently, I have a debt load of $65,000... yes, that's sixty-five, not a type-o. When I am finished it will be a little in excess of $85,000. This says NOTHING for the unsecured (credit card) debts that I've incurred trying to focus solely on school.

How I'll come up with the $850 a month payments AND survive after I graduate? No idea. I just know that I can't do that in Canada. It's hard enough finding a minimum wage job in BC at the moment, let alone one that would pay $2500+ NET INCOME per month (where I live, if you don't make 2k per month, you just can't live without room-mates). So - like many people, this lowly student is leaving the country nearly immediately after graduation. Finish classes, take two or three months to visit family and friends, then relocate to the other side of the planet where I will get paid what I'm worth.

Canada does all sorts of studies about the "brain drain" and still can't seem to figure it out. It's very simple. We get paid S*** in Canada. We get paid very well in nearly every other country on Earth. Why struggle to exist when you can "simply" move to another country and make hand over fist what the best jobs here pay?

Unless of course you're in a needed field, and even then... nurses are sorrily underpaid, paramedics get $1-$2 / hr to be on call 24/7... Doctors and Teachers are paid a paltry sum (contrary to popular belief)... even our police officers are asked to risk their lives for little more than what nurses make.

So... what do I do? what CAN I do? ... I'm pretty sure those are questions nearly every student is asking. Oh, I don't deny that there ARE possibilities in this country, and there ARE options - but, I refuse to be a highly educated person working for $8.25/hr at a 7-11, or $9.50/hr at a Starbucks (even though that's actually a great job), or $13/hr as a bank-teller somewhere when I can work over-seas for triple that amount.

Rant rant rant rant.
I'm done.

I know I'm not the only one. There are tens of thousands of stories like this. It's not even uncommon. It's just another student in Canada.

Ah, and to top it off... my rent just jumped up $200 a month, AND my tuition just went up $1000 per semester. Thank you Canadian Post-Secondary Educational System. I appreciate that.
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Johnny View Drop Down
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Joined: 05/November/2003
Location: Canada
Points: 5969
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Johnny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24/September/2011 at 8:31am

It's called indenturship.

Solve Student Debt specializes in solutions for students and graduates in student loan default, and those at risk of defaulting.
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ax View Drop Down

Joined: 19/November/2009
Points: 12
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ax Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25/February/2012 at 4:25am
I'm abroad right now, too, in Asia.

I know of a friend who worked in Japan for some time and went back only to find no jobs anywhere. Nothing. Despite having an education and work experience, there is nobody willing to hire them. I have no desire to return to Canada for various reasons, but hearing these stories AND the rising cost of living even in middle-of-nowhere cities like Winnipeg discourages me from having an inclination to go home. I mean even in Winnipeg which historically was one of the cheapest major cities to live in with a high standard of living is becoming stupid expense without wages increasing.

The ironic thing is that even if you were willing to work at Tim Hortons for beans (or donuts), you'd be overqualified (the management might find your education unconsciously threatening) and immigrant labour would be more desirable anyway.

So, going abroad is better. In a place like Taiwan you can enjoy a quality middle-class lifestyle, not be overworked and have a respectable professional job, all without any debt. The same quality of living in a city like Vancouver or Toronto, or even Edmonton of all places, would eat up all your income and you'd probably be going into further debt.

Hell, even Tokyo it is easier to find work and live a good life (provided you're not attempting to recreate a Canadian sense of space and eating exclusively western cuisine, etc...). If you were happy living in a smaller city like Osaka or Hiroshima, your cost of living would be substantially lower than Tokyo (maybe even half), and you'd have a good life, and probably have enough income leftover to pay off debts. The Japanese yen is high right now, too, so that helps.
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