Concerned parent looking for feedback on the amount of loans for PT

Discussion in 'Pre-Physical Therapy' started by bakes1, 10.29.14.

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  1. bakes1

    bakes1

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    posted this over in the PT thread but thought I'd look for feedback here -
    My child applied this cycle - waiting to hear decisions (has one acceptance already). However, I'm having panic attacks about the amount of loans she'll have afterwards. Everyone says go to cheapest state school but here in Michigan that still means about $75,000 - 80,000 for tuition only (plus she'll need additional loan $ to live on for the 3 years of the program). As her parent I want to say don't do it, that $100,000 or over in loans at the age of 25 is going to ruin your life. Looking for some feedback from others on how are you doing paying that much debt back and how are your doing it and making ends meet?
     
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  3. Watson27

    Watson27

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    Loans will not ruin anyone's life. Almost all PT students take out loans. Unfortunately, it's the nature of the beast. You can use the search feature over in the PT forum, I know there have been several threads about the breakdown of a PT's budget and how much they put towards loans every month. Even when they are paying back loans, I think the average PT can live comfortably.

    If she isn't worried about it, don't try to freak her out and stop her from pursuing her dream.

    That being said, my mother freaks out about my brother's loans from his MBA. He has over $200,000 in loans. But those lucky ducks in business actually get increases in pay with higher degrees, unlike DPT grads :p She also worries about the loans I will have to take and tells me to talk to my brother about it and to think about if it's worth it.

    I do think it is important to understand the weight of loans, and the fact that we PT students may be paying them back for 10-15 years. If you are uneasy, maybe you should talk to recent DPT grads and have your daughter talk to them also. I know that my mentor has mentioned how she is still paying on her loans and has advised me to go to the cheapest school that I get in to.

    Has your daughter looked into GA or TA positions at the schools she is applying to? Many DPT programs offer partial or total scholarships for student workers. Many times they do not advertise these positions or scholarships, so it is a good idea to ask.

    I do not worry about loans. I worry about the freaking insanely high interest rates on grad student loans. Come on, Obama. Help us out! ;)
     
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  4. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    There are indeed an number of excellent threads on this topic to be found by searching the PT and pre-PT forums.

    Also, I agree whole-heartily with Watson27's post above.

    The reality of loans is not really whether or not they prevent you from providing for yourself/your family, but how long you will be paying them back. Federal student loans have Pay-as-you-earn plans and income-based repayment plans that allow you took keep monthly payments to a minimum. This of course means that you will take many years to pay off a large student loan balance, and the amount of interest you end up paying over the course of your life may be greater than or equal to the principle. But if you just consider a minimum loan payment of $300-$800/month (depending on your income/spouse's income) as a monthly bill to be paid just like rent and utilities are, then you aren't hindered from enjoying your life. You just don't accumulate savings/retirement as rapidly nor do you have as much expendable income throughout your 20's and 30's (and maybe 40's if your loans are really bad). And the option to pay them off faster and have them gone is always there (and is a good one to take) if you are able.

    Student loans are indeed a burden to individuals and to the economy (a discussion for another thread!) but they are not unmanageable and the reality is that you are going to have to go into debt if you want to pursue a career in physical therapy, medicine, dentistry, law or any of a number of other professional school-requiring careers.
     
  5. tweaze

    tweaze 2+ Year Member

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    I am currently applying to schools, so I don't have personal experience (yet!) in managing the loans from PT school. However, if you visit http://www.apta.org/debtmanagement/federalopportunities/ it appears that there are a number of ways you can get a significant portion of debt forgiven - working for non profits, in underserved areas, and so forth.

    One of the hospitals I have volunteered at qualified for so much debt forgiven for so many years, and a number of the PTs working there were recent grads working to mitigate their loans. I have a couple of friends in rehab science (not PT) who have taken advantage of similar programs and are now free of their school loan debt.
     
  6. DPTcoasral

    DPTcoasral ready to go

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    Where did he go to school for his MBA? I sure hope it was a top 10 program (this actually does matter in the business world, unlike PT for the most part).
     
    Last edited: 10.29.14
  7. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    Just don't confuse those opportunities with the National Health Service Corp, which is one of the major ways of debts forgiveness for working in underserved areas in healthcare, but is not available to PTs. There has been legislation out there (which you could got to APTA and send a letter to your congressmen to support at one point, maybe you still can) to make PT's eligible for NHSC, but it hasn't really gone anywhere.
     
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  8. DPTcoasral

    DPTcoasral ready to go

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    What Knj27 said. There are a couple of programs available but not through the NHS unfortunately. You can apply to the Indian Health Services program which has a two year contract for 20k per year in repayment. You are also provided with a fair very/average salary and full benefits. I'm going to give this option consideration when the time comes. 40k off of your debt is significant!
     
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  9. engmedpt

    engmedpt

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    Im in your childs generation. Loans are the norm. Its disgusting, but thats what happens when the undergrad degree becomes the new high school diploma. Live simply. 100k can be killed in 5-6 years while living well. Get a small townhouse/apartment close to clinic. Drop 20k a year on loans. 65-20=45k left over....subtract your taxes, ect. Still making more than many hs teachers at that point in their career and they arent starving. PRN jobs to expedite the process. age 30, salary increase to 70-75k no debt. Job stability for life. Literally. Want to move? Cool, there are 7 clinics in the next city over. Live.
     
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  10. ashnicolee43

    ashnicolee43

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    I definitely don't think her life will be ruined by loans by any means. I've talked to many PTs and they would all tell you the same thing. My parents have the same concern and continually try to motivate me to choose a different career path. Honestly, I hate that they do that. If PT is her dream and you scare her from pursuing it then it will only cause resentment. My parents constantly bug me about it and it definitely hasn't caused me to rethink my career choice but it has caused me to stress a lot more. There's no need to add on stress to an already stressful process/program.

    I also agree with what everyone else has said. I think you should motivate her to look into programs while in school to help with her loans like scholarships. And afterwards there are many options. The hospital in the area I live in offers loan repayment if you agree to work for them for 5 years. The PT I shadowed took that deal and it's a pretty good one in my opinion. I'm sure if a hospital in Southern Illinois offers that then there are many other areas that offer the same.
     
  11. Watson27

    Watson27

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    USC... He's got a awesome job at Oracle now, so I guess it paid off.
     
  12. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    The loans just need to be kept within some level of sanity. There is a thread going right now (and there have been many in the past) about having >$250k in loans as a PT...that is the point where there isn't a lot of hope for paying those back in any kind of sane amount of time on a PT salary.
     
  13. engmedpt

    engmedpt

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    I applied to places underneath 100k many with underneath your starting salary (slightly over with some living expenses). If youre approaching anywhere near the debt of a medical student (160k average and up) then you need to seriously rethink what in the world you are doing. 80k translates to arguably the most manageable. half the starting salary of a primary care physician with half the debt. I just shake my head at people applying to places with 50k per year tuition OOS alone simply because its ranked high. they have no idea what they are doing to themselves if they matriculate......
     
  14. engmedpt

    engmedpt

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    starting salary fluctuates from 55-70k from the clinics ive been too. 70k seems rare right out but some OTs in orlando got 80k starting......im sure pt can be like that as well in the right niche
     
  15. OSUkid

    OSUkid Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    Hi, I am going to get a job right after pt school make anywhere from 70-80k. I will most likely be living with my parents at that time and I will be around 25. Then just pay off half the debt every year and save some money for myself so I will be done within two years, or I can just use my whole salary to pay off the debt in close to a year since I will be living with my parents.my debt will be around 60k-80k. Since I am in state. That's how I look at it, if I go out of state anywhere I will look for scholarships since most schools have lower gpa than the one I plan on attending OSU. For example Columbia just need a 3.65 and OSU you need around a 3.85. If anyone is going out of state they should realize their options. That's how I look at debt
     
  16. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    How do you know this?
     
  17. OSUkid

    OSUkid Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    You calculate the school tuition including extra for books. OSU its abut 18000 a year, times 3 equal to close to 60,000. plus books and so forth around 60k-80k.
     
  18. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    So how do you know you will get a job right out of PT school that makes $70-80k and how do you know you will go to OSU?
     
  19. OSUkid

    OSUkid Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    Most jobs are 60-80K. I am going to OSU because I am the best thats why. I will get a job because im the best physical therapist of my time duh
     
  20. engmedpt

    engmedpt

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    Im going to step in here.

    55k-70k is roughly the starting salary at most places with 70k being very rare. Youre assuming two things: 1. That youre guaranteed an acceptance. Guess what.....you aren't. If you want to play the statistics game, my stats are significantly higher than yours and I'm very aware that numbers are simply a way to put your foot in the door. I hope your arrogance doesn't come across in your interview. Your latest post makes you sound like a child that doesn't understand how debt, job hunting, and the real world works. Interview is the selling point and shows if you understand that you're entering a profession that is more of a vocation as an expert healthcare provider to a community in serious need of help within the next decade. Your interviewers will see through a pretty GPA if that's all you are.

    2. You assume that the job you will be getting will be conveniently located next to Mommy and Daddy and you wont have to worry about gas, travel, ect.

    3. You didn't take cost of living into account whatsoever. If youre bumming off of your parents then I can understand that. Maybe you have parents that really will hold your hand until your debt is paid off, I'm not sure. If they aren't, then you can throw in about an extra 45k from a three year min. wage salary to keep yourself in a small apartment and survive. I mentioned numbers earlier that were realistic. With cost of living being taken into account and being realistic with your salary, you can pay your debt off within 5 years if you are very frugal, live very simply, and pick up prn jobs. If you are able to pay off your underestimated debt load in a year or two, then you have parents who are saints......maybe you should feel a bit guilty bringing home income and not contributing the home cooked meals, health insurance, ect. that mom and dad may be giving you. In reality, most people don't have that luxury. My sisters a pediatrician. She had 150k in loans from med. She will be paying that off for a very long time. You know why? Because your salary doesnt 100% go to debt. Theres something called life you have to take into account.

    Oh and newsflash...................................................there aren't really scholarships that just pop up and magically rest in your hand when you are at the professional school level. Post college education is an investment that doesn't hand out large amounts of money for being on honor roll every semester.
     
  21. OSUkid

    OSUkid Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    First off how are your stats better than mine when I havent posted them yet lmfao, nice try. My pre req GPA is a 4.0 as of now, and I would rather have the ego to be the best so I back it up. Also I am being sarcastic. I do not have to take life into account because I already planned what I am going to do. Like I mentioned I will be with my parents so your argument is invalid and pointless, second of all I havent posted my stats so another pointless argument, and third I live in columbus I will have a wide variety of jobs close to home. Now how about you go mess up your life in debt because" OH MAN I am gonna go out of state because it is so cool" how about you study hard and get to a university in-state.
    Oh and newsflash a lot of people live with their families, its the smart thing to do, you would not understand because clearly arent.
     
  22. dropping101

    dropping101

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  23. Schland

    Schland 2+ Year Member

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    A few comments from a new grad now working as a PT..

    Chances of you making 70-80K out of school are quite small. Possible? Yes. Likely? No. It's certainly not something I would bank on, especially when you are not even in PT school yet and we don't know how healthcare reimbursement will be in a few years. Next.. are you aware of taxes???? You will NOT be taking home your gross pay. There is also a lovely thing called interest on the student loans... it builds up day by day. Given that graduate students no longer can get subsidized loans it will be collecting the ENTIRE 3 years you are in school. Also as stated there is no promise of getting a job close to where you live. Chances are you will have to drive or take some form of transportation to get to work. Will your parents be paying for that? Even though I live at home I pay the water bill, the cable bill, my phone bill, my car insurance, and my health insurance. Given I have good income it would be completely unfair for me to think my parents should pay for all of that.. But maybe your parents want to keep paying for you forever. Are you sure they won't change their minds in 4 years? Are your parents going to pay for your social life as well? Will they pay for your doctors appointments?
     
  24. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: 11.02.14
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  25. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    @OSUkid, you seem pretty confident in yourself for someone who had to ask what a PT tech is in another thread lol.
     
    Last edited: 11.02.14
  26. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    QFP
     
  27. jdaniels360

    jdaniels360 2+ Year Member

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    Thanks for today's entertainment folks.
     
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  28. engmedpt

    engmedpt

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    Graduate backed up everything I said and then some. Thank you, and also best of luck to you.. I read that the osu guy stated a 3.85. I apologize, I misread and thought you were using that as the golden willy wonka ticket personal gpa to your future rather than referencing an average. on that one thing I was incorrect.

    The response after my post was very narcissistic and filled with assumptions. I would like to put one quote here and sincerely hope that you change the thoughts in your head. Legitimately, it may be good for you as a human being

    "I do not have to take life into account because I already planned what I am going to do"
    .....life changes and you will always have to take life into account. especially on a prediction 4 years away

    I have applied to in state schools only. My 2-3 digit number to define my academics is very similar yours. Congratulations on the 4.0, publix sells cookies if you want a treat. The respective state schools Ive applied to (going OOS was never really "cool" to me) have rejected people with 4.0 gpas and have accepted those with a 3.4 after the interview process in place of them because those students knew what they were entering. I know examples. Two schools in particular are top 15. Yes, top 15. Education on the way life works as well as the struggles of the profession (there are many, check out declining reimbursements and battling insurance companies before your interview as well as the disconnect between the general population's viewpoint of you and the rigorous doctorate education that your job actually demands now) and positives may help you. If not, then you can probably remain like one of the memes above and revel in the fact that you solved the random electromagnetism problem on your physics 2 final to get an A instead of an A-.


    Finally, to the concerned parent at the beginning of this post you may want to personally message the pt graduate that kindly stepped into this forum. He or she will probably be able to give the best personal perspective as a healthcare professional. Sounds like things are working, but of course there some big sacrifices you have to make to pursue this field.
     
    Last edited: 11.02.14
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  29. OSUkid

    OSUkid Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    Lmfao yea yea relax buddy. I'm confident in my skills.close to my area I meant driving distance I didn't mean a walk in the park lol.of course I'm gonna pay my parents back what person wouldn't .who said forever why would I move out on my own with loans, I might as well be settled in pay everything back, have good income then invest in a house.not in a rush , Oliver queen lives with his parents you gonna make fun of Oliver queen LMFAO .
     
  30. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    No, but I'll make fun of you for using a Justice League superhero as backup material for your argument.
     
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  31. OSUkid

    OSUkid Banned Banned Account on Hold

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    Justice league was the first thing that popped up in your head? LoL You cant think of Arrow? Look man you just aren't cut out to be a PT.
     
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  32. engmedpt

    engmedpt

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    ................I was unaware that a vast knowledge of the justice league was a prerequisite to being a solid healthcare professional.

    Once a poster shows their pure stupidity, you should call it quits. You may want to consider removing your entire weeklong profile.......legitimately. Don't reply to this message. Seriously. You wont receive a response and the notifications are a waste of my and everyone else on SDN's day.

    @knj27 good luck this cycle. This week is big for many soft and hard deadlines.
     
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  33. Mad Jack

    Mad Jack Critically Caring Gold Donor 2+ Year Member

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    :laugh: They'll be fine. A PT can make more than enough to cover the loans with PAYE. Couple PAYE with public service loan forgiveness (PSLF) and they'll have their loans likely completely paid off in 10 years or so.

    Though I'd say if they are in the 150-180k range, it might not be worth it. Just my two cents...
     
  34. tweaze

    tweaze 2+ Year Member

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    I've heard it's a huge part of the interview process for many schools. I've been studying for weeks.

    In all seriousness, you seem to have a significant lack of compassion, and difficulty communicating respectfully. This will not serve you well in healthcare or in most fields, and you are representing yourself quite poorly.
     
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  35. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    If you didn't know the real origin of the Green Arrow and only knew about him from a show that only made the Green Arrow popular a couple of years ago, I'm not sure you're cut out for PT. All the good PTs I know go to comic con.
     
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  36. DesertPT

    DesertPT ` 2+ Year Member

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    And sorry to the OP that this thread has been completely hijacked...albeit in hilarious fashion IMO o_O
     
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