Friday, October 7, 2011

#iam53


I got my Bachelor’s Degree in Music on a full scholarship, but I ran up several credit cards that I couldn’t afford.

I over-borrowed on my student loans for my Master’s Degree. I continued to run up credit card debt I couldn’t afford.

I met my husband and upon marriage we started to work on paying down our combined debt.

I needed student loans for my doctorate, although I also worked two jobs and had a graduate assistantship. I was learning.

I couldn’t find a full-time position in my field upon completing my coursework. I worked part-time for two years while studying for my exams and completing my final requirements.

I lost my job several times through the years due to down-sizing. I finally went to corporate America to find a full-time position with benefits so I could start paying on my student loan (which was in deferment).

I worked in the corporate world in a forty-hour per week position. I was grateful to be employed with full benefits.

I now drive forty-five minutes one-way to get to my teaching position at a small community college. I consider myself blessed to finally be working in my field.

I try to help students avoid the bad choices I made! I know that my struggles have made me a better educator. I have more empathy for my students who are incredibly poor and work two or three jobs to pay for school and basic things like…FOOD!

I consistently work an overload and my husband works two jobs so that we can pay down our debt. We are close to only having our combined student loan debts and our car payments as our only debt. But my student loan debt alone is more than $750 per month. My student loan has never gone into default and never will.

No one made me over-borrow. No one made us acquire credit card debt. And no one is making us behave responsibly and pay off those debts!

And if I lose my job tomorrow, I will take whatever work I can to help support my family and continue to pay my debts.

I am the 53%.



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