I imagine parents that are even remotely tech-savvy feel particularly embittered as they pilfer their retriment savings, pick up extra hours at the coal mine and sell the family dog to send their 18-year-olds off to achieve that thing the internet keeps insisting is utterly useless. “Oh look another Forbes listicle about why playing hopscotch on the third rail is smarter than attending a University, too bad my kidney is already in Cambodia.”
What’s more, this collective higher education apathy is happening directly alongside growing reports about Generation X (the generation most likely to have children that either recently graduated or are currently enrolled) being the least fiscally prepared demographic for retirement.
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Nearly half of respondents between the ages of 38 and 53 polled in a recent survey said they have procured absolutely nothing for their retirement fund. This group was also the least likely of all the generations surveyed to set aside a grand for rainy days, instead, the Gen Xers reported living hand to mouth after using every penny they had to hack at an existing bill or outstanding debt. In their defense, they have the financial burden of making sure their birdies leaving the nest land safe and sound in addition to the pocket draining responsibility of making sure senile ones crashing back into the nest feel comfortable.
Quipper pamphleteers than myself have coined this financial phenomenon as “The Ever-Expanding Generation Sandwich.” Unfortunately, fraught economics and an influx of anti-college think pieces, are taking a toll sooner rather than later. According to a new Discover Student Loans survey, just 28% of parents intend to cover the costs of their kid’s education, down from the 34% that reported planning to do so just last year.
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“A growing number of parents are expecting their child to help pay for most of their college education. Thirty-eight percent of parents of college-bound students expect their child will pay for more than half of their college education, compared to 31% in 2018,” the study reports.
Seventy-five percent of the folks queried said that they are genuinely worried that their children’s tuition costs are gonna affect their own financial standings. By and large, the reported tactical propositions were extremely dispiriting. Thirty-five percent of parents are optimistic about having sufficient funds after sacrificing their vacation and entertainment savings, and 32% are resolved to the idea of retiring later than they would have otherwise after factoring college expenses.
The only number that experienced a sharp rise from last year, was the number of parents that plan on helping their blossoming successes with their college fees but fear they might not actually have the money to do so. Sixty-five percent; live in terror of the financial hole their child’s tuition threatens to put them, though only 55% of respondents chorused this last year.
Although a sizeable portion of the parents surveyed expressed varying degrees of financial tribulation, a similar majority have it in view to bite and scratch their way to pomp and circumstance or die trying. The shift was most apparent in approach, which in my appraisal is positive.
Again, the generation most put out in the report has been the protagonist of a thousand journals from every major publication in the cautionary tale of the fiscal armageddon. So finds like 10% fewer respondents plan on dipping into their own savings to cover tuition costs, serves as a good omen, especially juxtaposed with a statistic that says 58% of this same pool intends to urge their children to utilize students loans and grants.
Melanie Lockert of Discover adds, “Sending your child to college is an exciting time. Trying to pay for college, however, can be stressful, especially if you can’t afford all of the costs. You should focus on getting scholarships and grants first since they don’t have to be paid back. If you still need money for college, then there are federal and private student loans you can consider to help cover tuition.”