I am a bit older than most of you that are replying on this thread. I have not read everything within this thread, but I wanted to add a different
view to a lot of the things written here:
I was 22, just divorced an abusive husband and had a small child. I dropped out of university in 1986, (with a full paid scholarship, no less), to get
married to this man who was almost 12 years older than I. After I left him, I couldn't make ends meet answering phones, so I got lured into attending
a school in Phoenix in 1988 for a surgical technology program. It was an 18 month program including the "externship". I borrowed roughly 8 grand to
attend. I was about 2 months from graduating when the school was suddenly closed down. I was never able to complete my education. I got some kind of
"certificate"in the mail from another school several months later. I ended up moving to Houston and because I had already been working in
ophthalmology for a year while I was in school, I was able to get a position in a hospital scrubbing eye cases. I was trained on the job how to scrub
other cases. I worked as a surgical technician ONLY within ophthalmology and was never able to get a job in an operating room. I paid about 3 or 4
grand of the loan out of pure fear of the long arm of the DOE. Then I stopped.....bad finances, I got remarried, got ill, had another child....all the
things that happen in life....PLUS, I got in the mail in the mid 90's, a letter from a lawyer informing me that a class action lawsuit was being
instituted against the school, (Google: Keams v Tempe Technical Institute...and the case will pop up. It went ALL the way to the supreme court!). I
have not paid on that loan for close to 20 years. I never heard a word from the DOE in all those years. Then, this year, my husband and my tax return
was taken by the DOE. I got a letter stating I owed 18 GRAND!!!!! 18 grand on an original 8 K loan!!! No mention of any of the payments I made...not
one penny had been credited to my "account"!
When I found the case online, I read that the owners of the school went to jail, was ordered to pay back all the money they stole. They FILED FOR
BANKRUPTCY.....(something I was never able to do)...and they never had to pay back the hundreds of thousands they stole from the DOE and the students.
I, on the other hand, will continue to be chased and hounded and terrorized into paying back money that was stolen by a school that never gave me an
education. The "certificate" I was issued was from a school I never attended!
SO...when I read these snippy comments about how people should pay back their loans no matter what...that people who do not pay them back are
"losers" or "dead beats", it makes me angry all over again....BECAUSE NOT EVERYONE WHO IS DELINQUENT ON THEIR LOANS ARE DEADBEATS!!! The DOE is a
LOAN SHARK!!! It is CRIMINAL when an 8 grand loan turns into an 18 grand yoke...when a person can file bankruptcy for ANY OTHER DEBT...but not for
student loans....when they can come after you almost THIRTY YEARS LATER...especially when most other debts disappear or are written off after 10
years....when the people who actually STOLE the money I borrowed get LESS "punishment" than I do...THIS is the TRUE disgusting reality of the
student loan mess.....not simply the cost of education...the sheer amount kids have to borrow now...it's the fact that our gov. is a LOAN SHARK!!!!
They make a LOT more money with the 25% interest and all the other disgusting "fees' that just keep getting tacked on until there is no hope to ever
pay off the loan!
The government can come after my social security when I am 65...for a loan I took out when I was 23...(by then I am sure it will be 30 grand!!!)
I, and a million other people, are FOREVER SLAVES to the DOE...and in some of our cases....for an education we never got!
So, young uns'.....before you point the finger and smugly comment about how YOU paid your loans and telling others who can not pay them pack, (or
refuse to in cases like mine), and tell them to quit being a "dead beat" and pay your "debts".....ya'll need to realize that there is a LOT MORE
to the student loan crisis than what the "media" is telling you.....not everyone who refuses to pay is a dead beat.....
And my story isn't the only one. My mother took out a 3 grand loan 35 years ago, she paid about 10 grand back over the years in garnishments and
liens.....and after 35 years, they STILL want 15 grand from her....they just started taking her social security and she is now almost 66 years old and
can never work due to a disability....the DOE can take disability payments too, by the way!
I can go on and on and on......