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I went to a flight school in Fl. in 2003. Before I started I asked the school rep. if there was income potential to be able to survive financially on the other end of it. I was assured that there was. Key Bank was all to happy to give out the money for the school. It wound up being $76k for 11 months of training. No degree. The only qualification you came out of the school with was to teach other people to fly. You can do the same at your local aitport for a little less than a third of the cost - hindsight.
I am flying jets now. I transport hundreds of people a day. My w-2 for 2008 was $27,000. I have been a professional pilot since 2004. in 2007 my wife, who works at Wal-Mart, made a thousand dollars more than I did flying for a living. My burden for my school loan has balooned to over $112k.
The responsability for borrowers to repay their bills is obvious. I had a credit score of 780 before I went to school.
The problem comes when we have financial institutions in this country that get legal protection that reduces their risk to zero. There is no incentive for the lender to be responsible when there is no risk to them. It empowers the financial institutions and the "schools" to inflate the reasonable cost of education/training based strictly on how much money they're going to make with no regard to the unfortunate borrower.
Saoplady seems to be overemphasizing the responsiblity of the borrower and trying to paint the financial institutions as the victims in this debacle. As a pilot I am used to dealing with the reality of the situation, which is this. Making private loans non-dischargeable strongly encourages financial institutions to abandon any sense of responsability and risk management when it comes to doing business. Good salesmanship and creative language mixed with the optimism of potential students makes for easy pickins for schools and financial institutions alike. When a borrower can't pay and goes into default, it just translates into greater income for the financial institution over time. Again, there is no incentive for the financial institution to act responsibly.
Bankruptcy is the penalty for an individuals bad decision. It's also an option for the financial institutions which holds the notes that are not dischargeable to the individulal. It is the last resort when everything else has been exausted. It is not a free start over button. The fact is that the vast majority of people that have to file for bankruptcy protection - as well as buisinesses - do so because there is no other reasonable option. When there is an aspect that is protected - that is not public money, court/criminal costs or fines, or child support - it traps the individual in virtual financial slavery. Ultimately it prevents the individual from contributing to the overall health of the economy. No one in the situation that I am in will qualify for a car or home loan or credit card. There are thousands of people out there like me that are a liability to this economy because of the risk of the "education" lenders are zero.

The major problem is that YOU didnt do YOUR research. You attended a private school and took their word...did you call around to flight schools, airlines? You also entered an industry that was in termoil and post 9/11. I just did a google search for average pilot salary and there are discusions dating back to 2003-04 as to how poorly a bigging pilot is paid and the high turn over rate.

Why should private loans be dischargable? They are there for a bridge the gap between federal aid cost of attendance. No other financial institution is going to lend money to a student with no job and no income...and being nondischargeable is the price you pay. You were foolish enough to finance your entire education. Without private loans, a lot of people could not finish there education.

Sub: #1 posted on Thu, 04/30/2009 - 22:23

Moderators Cum Industry Expert
(Posts: 17209 | Credits: 4746.14)

It's interesting how inflamitory you are attempting to be while not addressing the points I brought up. You want to emphasize the individual responsability and completely ignore the responsability and risk that the financial institutions should partake in.
The reason that education costs so much is that the educational institutions in this country can charge the amounts they do and private finance happily bridges the gap between federal aid and school cost. Without that "aid" that increases the cost beyond reason, many of these educational institutions would not be able to survive. That would drastically free up public money for the legitimate schools that would have a keen sense of what they need to do to stay in business. The only reason higher education costs are so out of control is there's enough people out there willing to pay the amounts the education industry demand.
This country for the last decade has ignored irresponsability, or regulatorily encouraged it, in several aspects of business. Not just the housing industry. The irresponsability in the private education loan industry is a part of why we are in such a deep recession. Irresponsable leadership in the auto industry is what has lead it to it's destruction. Now tens of thousands more people are facing loosing their jobs, their livelyhoods. Irresponsable leadership leads to destruction. Either of the business, industry, or country. Attempting to blame the individuals that get cought up in the mess is a weak attempt to shirk the responsability that the leaders have for bringing us to this point.
Why should private loans be dischargable? Because it will force responsability back into the lending institutions. Will they all survive? probably not. But that's the risk of doing business. Can you imagine if the loans in the housing industry were non-dischargable?

Sub: #2 posted on Thu, 04/30/2009 - 23:55


You still aren't getting had a choice. No one made you sign the prom notes. You attended a PRIVATE for profit school. The private loan was available...nobody made you take it. All you saw was $$$. If that private loan was NOT available, you would have done what you should have done in the first place...research.

Sub: #3 posted on Fri, 05/01/2009 - 00:06

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(Posts: 17209 | Credits: 4746.14)

Apparently you are going to continue to refuse to address any of my points in this discussion and stubbornly hang on to the only point you have made. It brings to mind the thought of a child throwing a fit because the parents can't afford to buy the child a toy, and the child refusing to accept anything other than the childs point of view.
Since you are unwilling to address any of my points, I will once again address yours.
"No one made you sign the prom. notes." This is always the biggest argument defenders of irresponsable lending put forth. It's always the biggest argument because it is for the most part true. Untill you bring the salesman into the picture. In my case convincing myself as well as others that it's the only sure way of achieving our professional goals was to go to their school and pay their stagering high cost of training. A good salesman will always convince the consumer that their way in the only viable way.
No one made me sign the prom. note. I was convinced by the salesman of the school that it would give me a leg up on the other applicants when it came time to go to the airline. Not true. Those schools do nothing to prepare a pilot for life in the real world of professional aviation. A lot of pilots look down on people that have gone to schools like the one that I did because those flight school students come to the airlines with no experience and big opinoins. My saving grace among the other pilots is that I flew freight in single and multi engine piston airplanes. Being a freight dog means you get and stay good or you die.
"All I saw was the money." On top of seeing the money I saw the rosey future that I was lead to believe would be on the other end. When I went to school I fully believed that there would be an income that would support the debt and be able to maintain a lifestyle above the poverty line.
" If the private loan was NOT available, you would have done what you should have done in the first place...research." Research is what led me to the school that I went to. The more schools that I looked at, the more convinced I was that one of those schools would be the only way to get to fly for the airlines.
If the private loan was not available to me - and others like me - those schools would not exist at the cost that they charge. Another example of private school loans helping to hyperinflate the expense that is imparted unto the student. Hindsight being 20/20, I would have stayed at home and paid for my training out of pocket. It would have taken longer, but it would have been 1/3rd the cost. That is not an exageration. If that private loan would not have been available, my money would have stayed in the local economy. If the private school loan would not have been available, I would be able to contribute to the economy in a more effective way today.

Sub: #4 posted on Fri, 05/01/2009 - 03:13


Well, at least you got what you wanted - you are flying jets. There are many less fortunate people who have same amount of debt and no flying job.

This is free market. If bank can lend money on such favorable terms - they do it. If Flight School can charge that mach for training and there are people willing to pay that amount - why not? There is competition on the market which ensures that they do not overcharge. These companies are there to make money for their shareholders and that is what they do. That may be a bit cruel but that is the price we need to pay for free market, which provides many opportunities but also imposes high risk. The alternative would be highly regulated economy like the one was in Soviet Union where I grew up. It was not competitive and eventually failed.

Sub: #5 posted on Sun, 06/28/2009 - 03:32


hi debtcc
I understand what you're saying, i am in a similar boat. I went to med school plus i have a family.

I am still looking for a job in the hospital, my husband makes very little and i have a daughter to send to send to school.

We can barely make ends meet and what makes it harder is that some private loans will not allow you to pay with a credit cards if you don't have the money e.g Key b**k loans.

There's very little i can do, i might as well allow them to ruin my credit history, i have accepted it as just the way life is:)

Sub: #6 posted on Mon, 08/10/2009 - 20:12


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