As Supreme Court debates student loans, some families go to extreme lengths to pay for college
As Supreme Court debates student loans, some families go to extreme lengths to pay for college

As Supreme Court debates student loans, some families go to extreme lengths to pay for college

Student Loans 01 March, 2023 1:58 PM

Joyelle Tilton's youngest son, Dylan, wants to attend UMass in Amherst or Boston.

But for international students, tuition is about $36,000, more than double what they would pay if they lived in Massachusetts.

So, in August 2021, just before Dylan started his freshman year of high school, they packed up, said goodbye to relatives in Nevada, and moved to Massachusetts.

"Luckily my husband is a virtual worker and we can live anywhere, so we gave up our house in Las Vegas," said Tilton, 47.

It may seem like a dramatic decision, but for Tilton the move took a toll as his family was deeply in debt to pay for his son's college education.

"We are not willing to take out loans. I am ready to make other sacrifices," she said. “My husband is still paying off his school loans, probably until the day he dies. 

How much are tuition fees?

Some states, programs, and schools set deadlines for applying for financial aid in early March, while the United States

The high cost of college is a major concern for many Americans as the U.S. Supreme Court holds hearings on President Joe Biden's student debt relief plan on Tuesday.

Selling homes, dipping into pension funds and renting out spare rooms are just some of the ways families are paying for rising tuition fees. And that doesn't include the decisions students themselves make about joining the National Guard, choosing a community college, or applying to cheaper colleges abroad to pay their tuition — if they choose to go there. go – in addition to trying to complete their studies.

Anthony Carnevale, director of the Center on Education and Workforce at Georgetown University, said the rising cost of a college education will "lead to fewer and fewer people going to the university and graduate".

Between 1980 and 2019, the average cost of an undergraduate degree in the United States, including room, board and fees, rose 169%, from $9,307 to $25,004, according to an analysis from the Georgetown University Data Center of the United States Department of Education.

Between the 2008/09 and 2018/19 academic years, tuition alone increased from an average of $17,045 to $24,623.

As the Supreme Court weighs whether Biden's plan to forgive some student debt can go ahead, Americans mull over how to keep students and families from racking up a financial burden too heavy in the first place.

How do people go to college without a loan?

Brie, 25, has decided not to go to college, while Colby, 19, hopes to receive an ROTC scholarship to help fund his education. When that didn't materialize, he signed up with the Massachusetts National Guard, who would pay for his tuition at UMass Boston.

After a year of basic training, he is now a freshman. The academic scholarship will cover room and board. He also saved $17,000 through his work at Target.

The couple's youngest son, Dylan (17), who also works at Target, aims to save as much. But after failing the hearing test, joining the National Guard was not an option.

The family therefore moved to Wareham, Massachusetts to settle down, even though Dylan is in senior year this year.

What is the best way to pay university tuition?

Apprenticeships and certifications are growing in popularity as more and more people see the high cost of a college education and ask, "Why bother?"

A recent Gallup poll found that 46% of parents said they would rather their children get a certificate other than a bachelor's degree. According to a study released by the Federal Reserve in May, only 56% of college-educated adults under 30 think the benefits outweigh the costs.