In an era of dubious economic milestones, it was yet another lowlight. This spring, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Americans’ total student-loan debt ballooned to more than $900 billion — higher than their total credit-card debt. And no wonder the debt is piling up: Over the past two decades, the price of tuition has risen 20 times as fast as the average college grad’s wages.
Statistics like these help to flesh out a now-familiar message: The cost of college has escalated from unsettling to obscene. College administrators say that the soaring price tags reflect the rising costs of their own biggest expenses — faculty salaries and state-of-the-art dorms and facilities.
But even insiders acknowledge that it can all become a burden. At Ivy League stalwart Cornell University, for example, four years of full-price tuition and fees approaches $250,000. Faced with a choice between borrowing that much to go to that upstate New York Ivy or pursuing a more affordable education somewhere else, should an applicant really opt for the six-figure debt load? Says Thomas Keane, the school’s director of financial aid: “Please, don’t.”
READ MORE: Click belowthe original article from Market Watch, written by Anna Prior and Matthew Helmer