dude, go to richmond. your parents have another kid to get through college and their yearly income isn't as much as OOS tuition and room and board. you really don't want to burn through all their savings for a major where it is very likely that graduate education will help extensively, you can always do very well in undergrad and come to a dream school as a graduate. seriously, 40-45 k family income makes this a no-brainer. i understand that this is your dream but you have to think about postponing it for a few years will be worth saving your parents the burden of sending you to such an expensive school.
Hmm, one of you guys mentioned that I could try and get into the Ford School for my junior year. Do you think it's a better idea to go to Michigan and try that, or go to Richmond and try for Ford's masters program eventually? Then again, isn't it pretty difficult to get into the Ford masters program, much more so than their BA program? I don't know if I could manage to do that, but I already have been accepted to Michigan undergrad. If I do go to Michigan and try for their BA program in public policy, I can rule out going to grad school because of financial issues.
"Not sure I understand...5 years after graduation financial success is dependent more on the individual's work track record then where they went to college."
"Ah, If a Fortune 50 company hires two individuals perhaps one from a local directional U and one from the state flagship for the same position it is most likely that the salary difference will be negligible. After that initial hiring the salary adjustments, promotions, etc. in year 2,3,4 etc. will be predicated on the individual's success or company policy. In my case, kids that were hired from Michigan Tech, UofM, State, all started at the same salary and no one kept track of which ones went to which school as the years went by. "
Wow.. talk about a blanket statement. That's only the case for mediocre jobs.
For my company, first of all it's very difficult to get hired as an investment professional if you didn't go to a brand name school. And even if you are lucky enough to get hired going to a decent but not great school, it is almost impossible to make PM without that brand name degree. 90% of our PMs have ivy league credentials or HSW/Chicago MBA. And people who don't have a brand name undergrad degree are almost always told to go back to school to get the MBA to break through the glass ceiling. It's much easier to market a product managed by a Harvard grad than a Michigan grad, and it's easier to market a product managed by a Michigan grad than a State grad. There is a hierachy even 20 years in if you are in jobs with good career trajectory.
"Wow.. talk about a blanket statement. That's only the case for mediocre jobs.
For my company, first of all it's very difficult to get hired as an investment professional if you didn't go to a brand name school. And even if you are lucky enough to get hired going to a decent but not great school, it is almost impossible to make PM without that brand name degree. 90% of our PMs have ivy league credentials or HSW/Chicago MBA. And people who don't have a brand name undergrad degree are almost always told to go back to school to get the MBA to break through the glass ceiling. It's much easier to market a product managed by a Harvard grad than a Michigan grad, and it's easier to market a product managed by a Michigan grad than a State grad. There is a hierachy even 20 years in if you are in jobs with good career trajectory."
What is a mediocre job? Is it money or job title? I have a Ross degree and 20+ years of experience with small and large companies (marketing, sales, management). I've been a middle manager/director and never a C-level exec. None of the companies that I have seen in the software business do not give a damm after the first few years of experience about what college you went to (except Google). Certain jobs, certain industries that may well be true but the vast majority don't care, it's all about the performance.
Having a degree from Michigan does open doors, especially in Business for certain jobs in certain industries but I'd avoid dipping into the parents retirement fund or take on a crippling amount of debt to go to Michigan. I love Michigan and my son will be 3rd generation but I would not suggest anyone go into significant debt unless Michigan was offering something they could not get elsewhere.
Would around $28000 be considered "crippling debt" for majors like political science, public policy, or communications at Michigan? Michigan is said to have an edge in these areas compared to Richmond, so is the extra money worth more opportunities (especially job opportunities after college) presented? I know these majors won't bring in incredible income.
ARe you talking about your federal direct loans (not sure what $28,000 is)? If you are talking about your federal direct loans and you take the maximum amount over 4 years it will cost roughly the amount of a middle sized car payment for 10 years. Most people consider that manageable. If you are talking about $28,000 in private loans on top of the federal direct loans then you're getting into an amount of debt that you might regret. Starting salaries for communication/marketing/political campaign/PR jobs will be lowish no matter where you go to school.
Yes, I'm talking about approximately $28,000 of federal loans rather than private loans. However, does anyone have any idea if, when tuition increases for juniors and seniors, the financial aid you are given increases as well?
My parents would have to pay anywhere from $15,000 to $20,000 more for Michigan. That's my main concern. I think I could handle $28,000 in federal loans. This is the toughest decision of my life, whether or not I want that burden on my parents (and my younger sister), even though they're supportive of whatever decision I make.
If that's per year, in addition to your own loan, even with your parents savings it would to my mind be too much for their income level.
However, if that would be their contribution over FOUR years, given their savings, AND they had planned to use those savings to help you with school, then it would be a reasonably manageable choice.
I really feel you need to more fully discuss the financial aspects with your parents so that all is clear. I have known OOS students at UMich who've ended up having to transfer to a state school in the middle of their degree due to financial strain on the family. It's better to be certain up front you can handle it.
This is probably rude to say, but, while it is very nice of you to be considerate of your younger sister's plans, I would argue allocating your parent's money for you to go to U of M may be more worthwhile than for her to go to PSU. Why should you be the one to sacrifice a U of M education as compared to her going to PSU? Truly not trying to be obnoxious but as a parent with a senior and a freshman in high school, going through a similar situation, that is the first thing I thought of. My son (the senior) has decided on a smaller private school over U of M and it is the right fit for him-I am not going to make him go to U of M cause it's cheaper and have him be miserable. My employment situation may have to change as a result but that's just the way it is. He has worked his butt off for 4 years (more actually) and I want to see him happy.
^Did you happen to notice the part about his or her folks earning $40 k a year and that the $110 k they had in savings was all they had?
But you think it's responsible to tell the student to follow his/her "dream" without any regard for his/her sibling and parental solvency? Really? Umich is awesome, but undergrad just isn't worth the fiscal strain for a family in that income range with those assets -- unless so doing would leave some fiscal cushion and sufficient funding for the second sibling.
While we're all on this board because we have a deep interest in U of M, I must tell you that it is NOT a ticket to a high paying job, particularly in political science or social work. That should be obvious, but I think it needs repeating, no matter how much we all might love U of M, and no matter how great their programs are.
The mayor of my town went to U of M over twenty years ago (he is a friend of the family), and he's making less money than I am, and I'm a 28 year old high school graduate who's attending community college! And he wasn't making that much more than me when he was a state representative. And his degree is not what got him elected to either office. Also, I know someone who graduated from U of M with a political science degree, and who isn't much older than me, and his first job was back in his hometown, making minimum wage at a call center. He eventually found an emotionally rewarding position in social work, but it pays very little.
On the other hand, the most highly paid person in social work that I've met is my uncle who attended third tier colleges (Western Michigan and then Eastern Michigan for grad school). After working many years he was eventually hired as the head of the Youth and Family Services Bureau in Washington D.C. That opened a lot of doors for him and he now makes a lot of money working in the private sector. But that came after working for more than twenty, maybe thirty?, years in his field.
I'm not saying this to deter you from pursuing your passions, far from it. But if this is something you find yourself truly passionate about, you may want to consider spending extra money on internships, and perhaps investing in grad school. I guess I'd recommend thinking about how spending money now may affect your ability to afford future educational opportunities.
I don't know anything about Richmond, but do they have a specialized college for social sciences? Do they have an honors college? The sort of opportunities and extra attention you can receive in an honors college might help fill the void when it comes to what you might miss out on by not being at U of M. (PS: My youngest brother picked MSU's James Madison over U of M for political science, and he seems to love it.)
Yes, my parents would have to pay about $15k-20k more OVER four years if I go to Michigan.
My family's income will most likely increase to $50k or maybe even $55k for this next year; on the other hand, the annual cost for Michigan (as well as Richmond) would increase as well. I did e-mail Michigan and was told that their estimates predict that I'd lose just my $3400 Pell grant, although I'm not positive if that would affect my federal loans as well.
I know that future salary is an important factor, but when you say that the "rewarding work" with a political science degree pays very little, about how much do you mean? Maybe I'm being too optimistic, but my family of four has lived on about $35k a year for many years and we've been more than comfortable; there's no excessive vacations unless you count three-day weekends down the shore but hey, we consider ourselves more than happy