Unlike my last student loan entry, I didn’t want to wait months before providing an update and marking off a major milestone in my student loan repayment history. In fact, I only waited a few days to make this major announcement! Yesterday, I sent off another payment to MOHELA and the payment was enough for my total outstanding balance to drop down to approximately $21 thousand. If you’ve been following along my repayment story, then you know that this outstanding balance marks a major milestone in my repayment efforts:
I’ve paid out over one hundred and thirty-five thousand dollars to student loan companies since graduating from graduate school in 2006.
In many respects, this is utterly disgusting. Just the other day I posted a video of a no-good scumbag scam artist who received $70,000 of free money from the government to go to college. And make no mistake about it (let’s be real here, folks) – this guy received that free money because of his ethnicity and socioeconomic status, period. As a somewhat still young, middle-class, highly educated, intelligent, hard-working, white guy of European descent – I’m screwed in this country. There’s no way I could ever qualify for the race and ethnicity-based free money that the scumbag in that video was able to procure. But, I’ve moved beyond the innate anger that I have about our racist, sexist, class-based system that drives down otherwise good, determined students just because they have light skin and are males.
In another respect, this milestone is a reminder of all the great things that I don’t have right now in my life… and the aggravating comments that I constantly get from friends and coworkers – among others – about how I should do this and do that with my free time (they simply don’t understand).
However, the way I choose to accept reaching this milestone is to redouble my efforts to eliminate the remainder of this debt so I can get on with trying to craft as close to a normal – albeit delayed – life as possible. I’ve had enough of making these damn payments, which are now averaging somewhere around $2,250 per month (it used to be higher, but I had to buy a new car). Imagine your monthly take-home pay. Got that number in your head? Good. Now imagine deducting $2,250 right off the top of it (before any other expense). How much does that suck?
Trust me – I know.
So… hooray (in that crazy Mel Gibson voice) for me for reaching this milestone. The end of the road is drawing near for these loans and I’m going to pick it up so I can get there sooner rather than later. When Christmas 2013 comes around, I don’t want to have to worry about how much of my income needs to be sliced off the top so I can send it off to pay student loans. Enough is enough with this already.
Onward and upward!
Or should that be onward and downward because I’m paying down the loan? Whatever, you get the point that I’m trying to make here.
In May 2006, I graduated from Rutgers University with a Masters Degree and $120,720 in student loan debt. Since I started repaying my student loans in July 2006, I’ve repaid a total of $100 thousand in principal to various lenders including the federal Perkins loan program, the New Jersey Higher Education Student Assistance Authority, and CitiBank. I currently owe $21 thousand in principal to the United States Department of Education’s federal Direct Loans program. This loan is serviced by the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority. To date, I’ve repaid over $35 thousand in interest to these lenders. Follow my student loan repayment story on JerseySmarts.com.