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Student Loans?

Discussion in 'Audiology [ Au.D ]' started by gonnabeanaud, Apr 7, 2012.

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  1. gonnabeanaud

    gonnabeanaud Newbie

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    Hey guys!

    So I'm narrowing down my choices, and am pretty much debating right now between a very inexpensive (to possibly free) program, vs a quite expensive but much better option.

    I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for how to factor finances/loans into this equation. The average salary of a student coming out of the expensive program is $70k, which would be less than the amount I'd have to take out to go there. I've heard that you should never take out more in loans than you can anticipate earning your first year (not to pay it back at once, of course, just to keep things from getting out of control).

    Any advice, guys? I'm trying to talk myself out of taking the pricey route, but it's just SO tempting!
  2. jlambarty

    jlambarty

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    can some one shoot these folks.. dear friend dont waste 3-4 years and money!!! the return on investment in this degree is PATHETIC... please listen to this fairy lady...
    stay away. the Dr degreee has no value..., you are better off doing nursing!!!! or even playing in a band...
    if you have so much money and capability to pay back send the money to me i will double it for you...:idea::idea::idea::idea:

  3. quiteaud

    quiteaud

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    Is the cheap/free program any good?
  4. BabyBleusMommy

    BabyBleusMommy

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    If it is so useless than move on from it.... you seem to be a little obsessed since you keep trolling our forum.

    As for nursing vs. AuD... I will graduate with my AuD this May and my husband has been an R.N. for three years.... We are moving to a state that pay nurses well (compared to where we live now) and I am will start making $30,000 more a year more than my husband with 3 years experience. Of course he only has to work 3 days a week (12 hour shifts)... but my point is nursing doesn't always pay more....

    Stop trying to ruin peoples lives...it is one thing to tell people you meet your experience, but it is completely another to go to websites nearly everyday and speak negatively about a career that didn't work out for you.

    Did you ever think that you didn't make good money because of YOU... maybe you are negative in general or not good at what you do? Not everyone with a given degree is guaranteed the same success level...

    As for the original question, I am going to have $125K or so in loans (previous degrees before finding AuD) and have 2 kids and a hubby. I think I will manage to pay it back, so I would just go to wherever you feel most comforatble with.

  5. jlambarty

    jlambarty

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    Feel sorry for your RN hubby you making 30K more than your hubby>?
    what does he make 30K as an RN? holy crap.
    sorry lady
    this is bullsheet data....
    hope fully Freddie mac will come your rescue by writing off loans
    :scared:
  6. BabyBleusMommy

    BabyBleusMommy

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    Actually he will make $50K as an R.N., so get out your calculator and do the math to figure out what that means I will be making my first year out. Then take your theory about AuD and reformulate... you are way off base.

    Do everyone a favor and join a message board of something you actually like... Ridiculous to spend your time with people who don't want your around (even if it is virtual)!
  7. quiteaud

    quiteaud

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    Everyone needs to stop feeding the troll. Seriously, just ignore her/him.
  8. BabyBleusMommy

    BabyBleusMommy

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    Like the way you put that, Agreed!
  9. AuDitty

    AuDitty

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    So to get back to the OP's question...

    I was accepted into some better ranked schools and waitlisted for Vanderbilt. I seriously examined all my opportunities and decided even if Vanderbilt calls, I won't go (though I'm sure I'd be declining through gritted teeth, LOL). As much as I loved the facility and program there, coming out of graduate school $100k in debt means a decade+ of paying off student loans when I had found another program which met all my desires for graduate school yet would cost me much less.

    The reality is all of these programs are accredited which means they all offer at least the minimum necessary training to be an Audiologist. Some have better funding, others better research and others better facilities or connections. You have to look at the individual program (throw away the rankings - they mean little in the grand scheme of things) and decide which best suits your interests.

    I chose Wayne State and it's ranked waaaayyy down there, though I suspect that is going to change in the near future. Their program is unique. Two years ago they contracted out the clinical aspects of the program to the Henry Ford Hospital Audiology department which means I'm going to be taught by actually practicing audiologists (unlike many programs stocked with professors who only teach because they want to continue their research). I had the opportunity to speak with two different AuD's from the program and I loved the young, fresh approach to the program. It's still evolving and they are actively examining ways to improve it. They have structured the program to provide clinical rotations through the campus clinic (year 1) to Henry Ford (year 2) and three sites in year 3 including the Children's Hospital and a mandatory private practice rotation. To me, this is a clinical degree and I want as much real clinical experience as possible. There are fascinating research opportunities at the school as well so my Capstone should be a great learning experience, but I'm not interested in doing research for the long haul. I want to be a clinician. By the end of the four years I will have 3000+ clinical hours in a variety of settings. By the time I'm done I will have had the exposure to know which direction I want to go in my career. If that wasn't enough to cinch my decision, the funding opportunities certainly were. It's entirely possible to attend graduate school there for next to nothing due to the plentiful graduate scholarship opportunities.

    So ask what makes the pricey program "much better"? Is it because the program better meets your future expectations; has research in your area of interest? Or is it just because the program is ranked higher? Granted the connections from a higher ranked school could get you into a more choice fourth year setting, but sometimes the seemingly worst environments offer some of the best learning opportunities. Just be sure not to make your decision based on the ego of saying you attended this school or that school. Really examine the program options you have and select the one that best suits all aspects of your situation. Cost of moving, cost of living in that city, availability of family (living near family can be a huge financial aid - free dinners at Grandma's add up), areas of interest, funding opportunities, research opportunities, clinical exposures... etc.

    My feedback is choose based upon the realities of the program and how well they suit your end goals. Going 100k in debt is a huge burden that you will carry for a long time after school. Be certain that extra cost is going to benefit you in some manner. 70k/yr sounds like great money when you're an impoverished student, but once you buy a home which always seems to need something repaired, have to buy a new car because your grad school car finally up and died, have your first or second child and are now planning for his/her college fund... that $800/mo student loan payment will take a big bite out of your budget.

    This whole process has been so exciting and emotionally twisting! Good luck in your decision and congrats on starting grad school!!

    ~ AuDitty
  10. Kitska

    Kitska

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    I agree that an important thing to consider is what kinds of placements are you likely to get? If either program will give you access to good clinical placements (like, for example, top hospital clinics, varied experiences, etc.) then that could really make a difference in how much you get out of the program, regardless of how much it costs. I would weigh that heavily in deciding.
  11. gonnabeanaud

    gonnabeanaud Newbie

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    Thanks for all the wonderful advice, guys (with the exception of the troll)!

    Right now I'm leaning towards taking the more expensive option. It's considerably better than the cheaper route in terms of quality, breadth of experience, etc... I don't have any debt from undergrad, so at least I won't be adding on to it! Eeek! I'm so ready to have this decision making process be over! Then it's just four super easy years of grad school, amirite?
  12. ceb3z

    ceb3z

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    Hey! We were at the same school on Friday, and I was also choosing between going to school for free or going to a much better, more expensive program. I'm going with the more expensive route. I figure that I will most likely be flexible when it comes to getting a job, so I wouldn't mind relocating for a higher paying job. I think if that's the case, then the opportunities you'll have from the better school will be worth the debt. At least that's what I'm telling myself (and seems to be what I've heard from all the grad students there!)
  13. jlambarty

    jlambarty

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    nice discussion let me chip in . the troll is a pain
    no matter where you go expensive or cheap or free or junk school you and i will only do one thing at the end
    do testing testing testing testing all day long like a robot.
    infact these tests can be done by a walmart associate if trained for a week
    and then student loans + hubby earning 50K and two kids to feed and an Audi A6 car,.., hell what is left?
    so the troll stays ... dont get into the trouble of spending valuable time in this education... and join all the hundred other clueless women (mostly) and some unlucky guys.... and stare at 50K salary for the rest of life
  14. gonnabeanaud

    gonnabeanaud Newbie

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    I think I know who you were! Oh man, do you think we asked them enough questions about money? :p You're absolutely right though. I keep rethinking what they said about paying for the connections you make, not just the education. They just offered so many different opportunities for research that it would be difficult for my other contender to match! The research is just so stinkin' cool!!! I'm totally hooked.
  15. AudQuestions

    AudQuestions

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    I am surprised about how little money there is. I thought I was pretty good candidate, but I have only been offered a few grand at one school and the faint promise I would get an in-state tuition waver, and nothing at the other. So I guess I take the one that is offering me something, right?
  16. Dustbug10

    Dustbug10 Year IV Moderator Emeritus

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    Live music at high levels can lead to permanent hearing loss. Anyone who follows this guys' advice should wear appropriate hearing protection. Thanks.
  17. gonnabeanaud

    gonnabeanaud Newbie

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    I dunno, I think I'll blow my ears our, then go get some super awesome hearing aids from Walmart. Or maybe SkyMall. Bet those will work great!
  18. TheEarDoc

    TheEarDoc Au.D., CCC-A, F-AAA

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    The troll isn't completely wrong. Most of us will never be "rich" doing this job, but you can make a very comfortable living if you are even mediocre at this profession.

    I would go wherever will give you the most money because trust me paying out 500-900 a month in loan repayments doesn't sound like much right now, but when you factor in taxes, insurance, utilities, etc. it's a lot.

    I am so glad I turned down offers to better schools and went with one that gave me nearly a full ride. I came out with about 50k in loan debt compared to about 80-100k that many of my colleagues have. I now work at a position that pays well and the benefits are amazing and I love it.

    Sure I will be paying $500 a month for the next 10 years to get my loan paid off, but it's a nice tax write off.

    The troll is right about one thing you should only take out in loans for less than what you will make your first year out. When you start paying bills and needing a car payment, rent, insurance, living costs, and fun money, the extra cash you give back to uncle Sam in loan payments really is missed. I know I'd already have bought a house if I had that extra $500 a month to pay on my mortgage rather than a loan payment.

    Oh and if you are worried about going to a less known school and making less money or not getting a job? Don't fret. I went to a very small rural school and I've rubbed shoulders with some of the top people in our field. It all comes down to networking, your skill set, and how you sell yourself.

    Go with the cheaper option and enjoy the extra spending money when you get finished!
  19. cidanu

    cidanu

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    it's a personal opinion/decision, but i agree with the EarDoc. when you're a student there are endless possibilities and everything is a open book and you can do anything.

    it's hard to have perspective about money when you've not been in the real world on your own. money can be great but lack of it can hold you back from a lot of things.

    i think it's a good idea to think about what kind of career you want. if you're super ambitious maybe it is a good idea to go to more prestigious school. but you can still become a great audiologist and rise to the top through networking and self-initiative.

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