Postgraduate studies is an ugly phrase. It conjures images of cutthroat competitions and tedious texts plus hours spent hunched in a dark library corner. Many students flee from the classroom to the employment line to escape this fate. They want no part of extended academia. Without it, however, they often find themselves faced with federal loans and rising interest rates, and that replaces the American dream with a financial nightmare.
The Dangers of Debt
A sad truth governs the education system: it’s expensive. Coursework demands time, patience, and extensive funding. These problems often force would-be graduates to apply for state and national aid.
Too often, however, that aid becomes a burden. Students are unable (or unwilling) to pursue postgraduate studies, but they are still forced to pay what they owe in loans. Consider these statistics, as provided by the American 2.0 Report:
- Approximately 46% of all college students will not graduate.
- 25% of postgraduate students will drop-out.
- The average student will owe $26,600 whether he completes his program or not.
These numbers combine for a disastrous future, with many students left with debt, not degrees.
The Need for Education
Those wishing to avoid crippling loans must consider higher education. Completing a postgraduate degree counters the thousands of dollars most students will owe with:
According to the Hamilton Project, non-degree holders can expect to earn up to 75% less than postgraduates within their lifetimes.
Postgraduate education is specialized, bolstering a student’s resume with relevant experiences and fieldwork. These work-related skills appeal to and impress employers.
Entering postgraduate studies provides students with access to their field’s most influential professionals, and this can translate into better job opportunities later. Connections are made with greater ease and frequency.
Understanding the Alternatives
Higher education, despite its ability to combat debt, still proves daunting to many students. Traditional coursework often seems impossible, and trying to navigate dissertations and credit requirements can unnerve even the most dedicated.
Choosing an alternative postgraduate option, therefore, may provide the needed compromise.
Short-term certificate programs, known also as educational boot camps, deliver fast-paced results, accelerating students through immersive workshops. They offer project-based curriculums that translate into real-world experiences. They’re also less costly due to their shortened terms and streamlined classes.
Online programs bridge the gap between students and academics, disregarding the once persistent issues of geography and time zones. Postgraduate candidates may study any field from any location. Choose a masters in health informatics online, gain a MBA in Business, or even earn a communications degree with the press of a button. These options are flexible, promote a greater understanding of technology, and boast reduced tuition fees.
By choosing alternative programs, students earn their educations without sacrificing their bank accounts.
Battle Debt With Education
Financial freedom is a laudable goal. It’s also an unlikely one when federal loans loom. Avoid a fate of subsidizing, consolidation, and fixed rates. Let postgraduate studies instead ensure stability for the future.