Graduate Student Debt: top is Walden with over $750 million

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by warguns, Jul 9, 2015.

  1. warguns

    warguns Member

  2. airtorn

    airtorn Moderator

    #7 is interesting. I always view Liberty as a low cost school but that is because of its very nice military tuition rates.

    What schools are at 4, 5 and 8?
  3. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Here's the list:

    Walden University Proprietary $756,336,024 1
    Nova Southeastern University Private-Nonprofit $532,479,305 2
    University of Phoenix Proprietary $493,078,509 3
    New York University Private-Nonprofit $471,627,155 4
    University of Southern California Private-Nonprofit $460,167,597 5
    Capella University Proprietary $399,450,066 6
    Liberty University Private-Nonprofit $351,847,277 7
    Midwestern University Private-Nonprofit $335,146,070 8
    Grand Canyon University Proprietary $329,153,677 9
    Strayer University Proprietary $284,209,616 10
    Columbia University Private-Nonprofit $241,667,574 11
    St. George's University, School of Medicine Foreign-For-Profit $241,203,227 12
    Kaplan University Proprietary $226,598,462 13
    Ross University School of Medicine Foreign-For-Profit $218,874,479 14
    Georgetown University Private-Nonprofit $214,982,053 15
    DeVry University Proprietary $214,752,052 16
    George Washington University Private-Nonprofit $206,524,570 17
    Argosy University Proprietary $201,828,298 18
    Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Public $192,355,258 19
    Western University of Health Sciences Private-Nonprofit $185,081,134 20
  4. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    I was not able to read the article because it came up as for subscribers only. I have two thoughts about the numbers. If the numbers indicate the total amount of indebtedness by all people coming out of that school them I'd say that number is one step away from being meaningful. You'd need to know the total number of students who are sharing that total debt. It's the dollars per person figure that has the significant meaning. Second, I'd say that it's at least somewhat different that we're talking about grad degrees. For example, if my $100K of debt at Walden is from getting my PhD in Counseling Psych then I'm guessing that I have a good chance of earning enough to pay that off. It's not the same as going $100K in debt by earning a Bachelors degree in History at Phoenix (or wherever else fits). With all that said I'd just add that I'm not shocked that Walden is at the top of the list as we've always noted how expensive they are.

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    I met my former roommate's parents who from New Jersey; they told me it was cheaper to pay for their triplets out of state tuition in Pennsylvania and Virginia at public institutions than in-state tuition in New Jersey. Now, it does not surprise me that Rutgers is the only public institution in the list.

    One the second notice, 2 of my schools (Nova Southeastern University and Georgetown University). Although I attempted admission to Columbia University, George Washington University, and Capella University.
  6. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    What makes me wonder is if those numbers might also include graduates of professional schools. If that's the case, then you have medical, dental and law school graduates inflating the overall debt of some of those schools.
  7. warguns

    warguns Member

    Apparently it at least includes medical, nursing, vet, and dentistry schools because there are two schools on the list that offer only those subjects. Don't know about law schools.
  8. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    It's interesting to see that the two largest Caribbean medical schools are on the list. I think Kizmet is right, we're looking at the numerator here but not the denominator. That makes for good clickbait, and perhaps it serves the agenda of the author, who works for a political organization, but it's not so great for actually becoming better informed about the big picture of student loan debt.
  9. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    I would have to say that Ross University College of Medicine almost certainly has a higher debt per student than the University of Phoenix. UofP has hundreds of thousands of alumni (both degreed and non-degreed). Ross University does not.

    So it's a fun start to a conversation but they never really provide any meaningful data from which one can form an opinion.
  10. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    That's fair. On the other hand, the average Ross University graduate can practice medicine in the U.S. and thus probably has significantly better income potential than the average graduate of the University of Phoenix. So even knowing the average debt load per student may not end up being all that informative.
  11. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    That's very true. I didn't mean to imply that my conclusion actually had any actionable meaning I was simply pointing out a weakness in the data as presented.

    When evaluating a school like Ross yeah, you could look at average debt per student. But that doesn't really give you a complete picture. If I'm thinking of attending Ross I want to know what their pass rate on the USMLE is. I also want to know the percentage of graduates who place in U.S. based residencies.
  12. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    I would settle for a less incomplete picture where we knew the number of students sharing the debt. There are many other variables that would lead further down a path less ambiguous, but at least total debtors per school is a start.
  13. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    It would be nice to know how much debt each student is carrying, but Walden doesn't have any degree program that warrants a lot of debt. However, I think these figures are more important in another context. There really is no student loan debt crisis. The median student loan debt is $8,500. Outliers on the high end skew the average student loan debt to just under $30,000. Students attending graduate programs at a small number of schools are mostly responsible for the $1.2 trillion of student loan debt.

    Time To Stop The Sob Stories About Student Loan Debt - Forbes
  14. Tireman 44444

    Tireman 44444 Well-Known Member

    I can answer that question. My wife. ABD. Psychology. Walden. 85K.
  15. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator

    What about the default rate? That needs to factor in.
  16. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Very true.

    Let's say I was rejected by every medical school I applied to in the U.S. but I got into Ross. I have two choices: pick a new career or rack up much more debt than the graduate of many U.S. medical schools (but have a shot at becoming a doctor).

    I might be saddled with a ton of debt but it that is the price I had to pay for the career I wanted. And, if I actually landed a residency and then got myself a job as a physician, I might very well be able to make those payments without incorporating Ramen into all of my meals. That sounds more like a story of an individual's tenacity than an indictment of Ross University to me.
  17. me again

    me again Well-Known Member

    That's extremely sad to read.
  18. Neuhaus

    Neuhaus Well-Known Member

    Is it?

    There are people leaving four year private universities and colleges with six figure debt for a B.A.
  19. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    That's sad too; or, might I say, stupid. However, some careers that only require a bachelor's degree pay more than being a psychologist. The median salary for a psychologist is less than $68,000. There is a shortage of internships, especially APA-accredited internships. Those who come from APA-accredited schools have a better chance of getting in. Many of those PhD programs are funded. Paying nearly six figures for a non-APA-accredited degree in psychology is risky.
  20. Tireman 44444

    Tireman 44444 Well-Known Member

    Even sadder, we have to pay it back. No, she is not finished. No, I do not know if she ever will. It is her decision, not mine.

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