Debt is the crippling struggle of every generation. Today’s college students enter adulthood with the idea that the advanced education they have received will help them function in society as friends, lovers, siblings and parents. Upon graduation they hope to have successfully created the pillars that their future will be built upon.
Yet, typically, when they leave a four year college or university, they can find themselves with an overwhelming debt of $100,000 to surmount. Without parental help or exceptional guidance in navigating the minefield of debt and adult responsibilities after college, any young person could spiral into a long sentence of bad credit.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders together announced that, beginning in 2017, New York State would offer scholarships for families with an income up to $125,000. The scholarships would potentially cover the cost of tuition at state and city colleges and universities. The scholarships won’t cover the cost of books or lodging, but that dent in debt will surely aid in the beginning of a life after college.
Facing decades of debt is no way to begin the lonely road of adult responsibility. Graduates may have significant others, or middle-income parents willing to sacrifice, or have landed a high paying job, but in this world none of those are magic wands to make the loans disappear. Those four years of jumping academic hoops don’t guarantee debt disappearance either.
A college education is an expensive and time-consuming investment in ourselves; it is also a gamble on our future, because it’s no guarantee of a job or successful career.
We applaud the governor on being creative and showing leadership on this national issue. We hope that the state legislature will quickly work out the details before the end of this school year.
On Aug. 4, 2016, this paper published an article about one of our reporters who fell victim to a scam. In the article, detail was provided about the situation and information was released about the scammer, who provided a photo ID. The article was published after trying to get in contact with the man several times but had not heard back from him. The Queens Tribune has since learned that the photo ID the scammer provided was not his, but was instead another one of his scam victims. We apologize to the individual on the photo ID who wishes to remain anonymous.