Archive for the ‘Jobs You Can’t Afford’ Category

11 Majors You Can’t Afford

November 9, 2011 1 comment

From the Huffington Post: the 11 majors with the highest unemployment rates.  Interesting that there are actually a couple of tech-related things on the list since we’re constantly being told that the only people having trouble paying off student loans are irresponsible former women’s studies majors (or the poor guy who got a master’s in puppetry and is now being ridiculed across the web) who spent their student loan money on BMWs and trips to Europe.


Jobs You Can’t Afford – Public Defender

November 14, 2008 Leave a comment

For my next installation in the ongoing Jobs You Can’t Afford series, I’m going to talk about Public Defenders. Public Defenders are government lawyers who work on behalf of people accused of crimes when those people cannot afford an attorney.  You know the line from the crime shows, “If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you”?  That’s these guys.

In this country, people accused of crimes have a constitutional right to an attorney so the job of Public Defender is essentially one of upholding the constitution.  Yet this important job is becoming more and more out of reach as tuition continues to outstrip salaries. Read more…

Jobs You Can’t Afford – Social Worker

November 10, 2008 Leave a comment

Social workers play extremely important roles in many sectors of society from working with abused children to counselling drug and alcohol abusers.  The pay isn’t great – over 20% of social workers make less than $30,000 a year – but social workers aren’t in it for the money; they’re in it to help people and to change lives. 

Unfortunately, the cost of the education necessary to become a social worker is rising even as salaries stagnate, making it increasingly difficult for caring people to choose this line of work.  In order to become a licensed social worker, most people must earn both an undergraduate degree and a two-to-three year graduate degree (MSW), which means significant debt.  Consider these statistics from the National Association of Social Workers:

  • Bachelor’s level social workers have an average loan debt of $18,609.
  • Master’s level social workers have an average loan debt of $26,777.
  • Doctoral level social workers have an average loan debt of $32,841. Read more…

Jobs You Can’t Afford – Chef

November 7, 2008 Leave a comment

One of my chief reasons for starting this blog was to highlight how much our career choices are affected by student loan debt.  As The Nation once suggested, student loans have everything to do with social control, but it doesn’t always work out for the betterment of society:

How many young people turn away from low-paying but vital professions because they can’t earn enough to pay back their loans? How many potential social workers, pro bono lawyers, journalists, environmentalists, teachers, artists, secondary medical professionals and community workers are we losing?

Thus, I have decided to begin a new series – Jobs You Can’t Afford.  Here I will tell the stories, culled both from my own interviews and other sources, of the many career options that are closed to people with large amounts of student loans.  I will tell both the stories of people who have had to give up dreams and the stories of people who wouldn’t – and suffered as a result. Read more…