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Beryl smile

To pay or not to pay.

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Hey, my name's Beryl. I'm a 22 year old male student, living in Brooklyn NY.

I was recently accepted to Columbia U, School of General Studies. This was huge for me as I've never had a previous education (prior to my Associates at Kingsborough CC).

They've accepted about 40 of my credits, and after punching the numbers I've realized that it would cost me about 13K a year in loans (aside from living expense) to take 12 credits there per semester.

The question is, with me going into Clinical Psychology, hoping to go straight into a PHD program, is it worth this debt?

My other option is Hunter college, where because of financial aid I'd get paid to go there, a bit.

This issue is driving me insane, and I would really appreciate any and all help.

Thank you.

Edited by Beryl smile

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So how much total debt would you be taking on? Are doctoral programs in your field commonly funded? If so, I would take on the extra debt.

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Clinical Psychology programs are very competitive, from what I recall. I don't know much about Hunter, but I think that having the Columbia name attached to your resume would be helpful when applying to PhD programs. I do have a question, what is the School of General Studies include? Will you later apply to another school within Columbia? Or are you relegated to a degree in "General Studies"? If it's the latter, I would change my position and suggest you go with Hunter, where you can take psych courses and major in psychology.

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Going into debt sucks! If you can pay it off or easily make small payments each month then go for it--otherwise forget it. Debt will control how you live. I have a MINIMUM payment of $1,000/month and with my MA all I got was a job that pays me $1,800/mo that leaves me with $800-not a lot for living in LA (I live at home with Mom and Dad and still break even each month after gas, food, med/dental bills, cell hpone, car payments, car insurance etc...and I don't even pay utilities or rent). Seriously work with a financial advisor and realistically look at your future job prospects, salary and debt payments. It's hard to imagine what it's like until you are in it and paying--and by then it's often too late.

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