This is a shocking study for liberal minded morons across the land. If you pay $30,000 per year to a shitty college for a shitty degree in arts, education or social work, you will end up with a shitty job, shitty pay and a massive debt that you can never pay off because you have a shitty job with shitty pay. But guess what? Obama and his minions are doling out hundreds of billions of YOUR TAX DOLLARS to these clueless morons so they can get worthless college degrees from terrible schools every year. Even though these morons are virtually unemployable, they don’t show up as unemployed in the government statistics while they’re getting their worthless degrees with your money. There are millions of idiots occupying classroom space at worthless institutions across the land. It’s a scam and you are paying the bill.

Via The Atlantic

These U.S. Colleges and Majors Are the Biggest Waste of Money

You can major in art at a lower-tier public university if you want to. Just don’t expect it to make you rich.

This morning we published a review of recent research by PayScale on the most valuable colleges and majors in America, based on self-reported earnings by individuals who graduated from hundreds of schools.

Some of you asked: What about the least valuable colleges and majors in America? What a mischievous question! So we looked into that, too.

Here are the eleven schools in PayScale’s data with a 20-year net return worse than negative-$30,000. In other words: these are the schools where PayScale determined that not going to college is at least $30,000 more valuable than taking the time to pay for and graduate from one of these schools.

It gets worse. The self-reported earnings of art majors from Murray State are so low that after two decades, a typical high school grad will have out-earned them by nearly $200,000. Here are the degrees (i.e.: specific majors at specific schools) with the lowest 20-year net return, according to PayScale. They are all public schools: Bold names are for in-state students.

The same caveats that applied to our first article apply to this one. First, these estimates come from self-reported income. Self-reported income tends to skew up, because humans are a proud species, and we care more about our feelings than strict honesty with anonymous pollsters.

Second, PayScale calculates the next 20 years in earnings by inferring from the last 20 years. Sounds reasonable. But like any assumption, this carries risks. The “most coveted major” changes from time to time. If biomedical engineering becomes the next big VC category, scientists in California will be in higher demand than software engineers, whose earnings forecast might fall. PayScale can’t predict that future. Moreover, if a school dramatically expanded a high-value program (like engineering) in the last five years, it might raise the financial value of its students in a way that PayScale doesn’t full account for, since this research looks back two decades. In short, like most studies of this kind, the findings are fascinating and worth remembering and quoting—but also worth contextualizing.

Finally, as Jordan Weissmann notes, PayScale can tell us which colleges graduate the richest students. But it can’t tell us which colleges make the biggest delta in student outcomes, which might be a more important question for college counselors and families. For that, you would need to study a huge group of similar kids, some of whom went to great colleges, some to middling colleges, and some to bad ones, and measure the difference. When we measure lifetime earnings of students graduating from elite (and poor) colleges, we’re measuring both the quality of the college and the earnings potential of the student attending that college before they stepped foot on campus.

19 thoughts on “COLLEGE ROI”

  1. Better off just buying some textbooks from a bankrupt school and reading them while you cruise around The Burning Platform.

    Ask a few questions, get called a dumbfuck, dipshit and dimwit. Learn a few things.

  2. In my experience, even when applying out of your field a STEM degree will get your foot in the door faster than a relevant degree.

    For example, when I got this job, my wife was also job hunting. She applied for 6. She got 5 interviews. Three of the interview groups had no idea who she was, or what her qualifications were, but still called her for an interview on the basis that “they had to see what a chemist was doing applying for position”.

    I have similar stories for several other colleagues in other fields. For the record, this seems to hold true for only the “hard” sciences, like chemistry/physics/math. Biology and its related components engender much less interest.

    PS: She got offered 4 of the 6 positions she was offered.

  3. At one time student loans were for tuition. Now, the student is given the money – to spend as they please. Here in Minneapolis, close to the University of MN campus, they are building upper scale apartments for students. Amenities include underground parking, exercise equipment, etc.

    These ‘kids’ are spending student loan money on these apartments!

    I’m afraid what’s going to happen is that the govenment is going to ‘forgive’ the debt – and us taxpayers will take it in the shorts.

    Most of these liberal arts degrees, or any degree that ends in ‘Studies’ are worthless. The colleges and business have colluded to require a college degree for jobs that previously a HS graduate could walk-in off the street and get the job.

    Another scam industry is ‘continuing education’ and ‘certification’ – this is a big moneymaker – cause you have to keep returning to the schools. So the school can charge something like $750 for a day long class and give you some ‘continuing education’ credits.

  4. All the scamsters from sub-prime housing went into “education” after the housing bubble collapsed. They’re now signing up kids for a lifetime of debt, and creating an even bigger subprime bubble. What’s more subprime than kids that went to a worthless school and graduate with a degree in transgender and diversity studies? And your tax dollars are going to liberal progressive professors that brainwash these dipshits into thinking socialism and communism are a good thing. Most millennials believe in big government, income redistribution, and government-guaranteed jobs.

    The only thing keeping our economy from collapsing is student loan cash and subprime auto loans. Student loan debt is now more than credit card debt. Yet another bubble that will blow, and the Fed and the criminals in Washington will have to find another bubble to blow up, or the economy will collapse.

  5. The lost generation of student loan debt serfs will wipe out this country. They can’t buy homes (1/3 live in their parent’s basement), the can’t buy furniture, most can’t start families (unlike the 100 million on welfare, who are paid to reproduce), can’t buy cars. Economic collapse thanks to government intervention and another debt fueled bubble.

    $1 trillion student loan debt widens US wealth gap

    Rising college costs add to $1 trillion student loan debt, widening US wealth gap

    Every month that Gregory Zbylut pays $1,300 toward his law school loans is another month of not qualifying for a decent mortgage.

    Every payment toward their student loans is $900 Dr. Nida Degesys and her husband aren’t putting in their retirement savings account.

    They believe they’ll eventually climb from debt and begin using their earnings to build assets rather than fill holes. But, like the roughly 37 million others in the U.S. saddled with $1 trillion in student debt, they may never catch up with wealthy peers who began life after college free from the burden.

    The disparity, experts say, is contributing to the widening of the gap between rich and everyone else in the country.

    “If you graduate with a B.A. or doctorate and you get the same job at the same place, you make the same amount of money,” said William Elliott III, director of the Assets and Education Initiative at the University of Kansas. “But that money will actually mean less to you in the sense of accumulating assets in the long term.”

    Graduates who can immediately begin building equity in housing or stocks and bonds get more time to see their investments grow, while indebted graduates spend years paying principal and interest on loans. The standard student loan repayment schedule is 10 years but can be much longer.

    The median 2009 net worth for a household without outstanding student debt was $117,700, nearly three times the $42,800 worth in a household with outstanding student debt, according to a report co-written by Elliott last November.

    About 40 percent of households led by someone 35 or younger have student loan debt, a 2012 Pew Research Center analysis of government data found.

    Allen Aston is one of the lucky ones, having landed a full academic and financial-need scholarship at Ohio State University. The 22-year-old software engineer from Columbus estimates it let him avoid about $100,000 in debt.

    Without loans to repay, Aston is already contributing 6 percent of his salary to a retirement fund that is matched in part by his employer and doesn’t have the same financial concerns his friends do.

    “I’m making the same money as them, but they have student loans they’re paying back that I don’t. So, it definitely seems noticeable,” he said.

    At the other end of the spectrum is Zbylut, an accountant-turned-attorney in Glendale, Calif. He’s been chipping away at nearly $160,000 in student debt since graduating in 2005 from law school at Loyola University in Chicago. Now 48, the tax attorney estimates he could have $150,000 to $200,000 in a 401(k) had the money he’s paid toward loans gone there.

    “I’m sitting here in traffic. I’ve got a Mercedes behind me and an Audi in front of me and I’m thinking, ‘What did they do that I didn’t do?'” Zbylut said by cellphone from his Chevrolet. He’s been turned down twice for the type of mortgage he needs to buy a home big enough for himself, the fiancee he would have married already if not for his debts and her 10-year-old son.

    “I have more education and more degrees than my father, as does she than her parents, and yet our parents are better off than we are. What’s wrong with this picture?” he said.

    Student debt is the only kind of household debt that rose through the Great Recession and now totals more than either credit card or auto loan debt, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Both the number of borrowers and amount borrowed ballooned by 70 percent from 2004 to 2012.

    Of the nearly 20 million Americans who attend college each year, about 12 million borrow, according to the Almanac of Higher Education. Estimates show that the average four-year graduate accumulates $26,000 to $29,000 in loans, and some leave college with six figures worth of debt.

  6. Wow, that’s weird… I actually know the guy in that story. He was my lawyer/accountant before he moved to California with his girlfriend.

  7. Zbylut is an idiot. Not only did he waste a ton of money getting a worthless law degree, but he wants to dig an even deeper hole by buying california real estate nearing the top of the most recent bubble.

  8. Grad School Is a Debt Machine

    America’s student debt burden has been on the rise for years, along with America’s class of incredibly well-educated retail workers. A new report reveals who’s driving the train to debt hell: grad students.

    …the cost of grad school degrees that will not earn you any money have increased more than the cost of grad school degrees that—while expensive—will eventually earn you money. At this rate, the cost of graduate degrees that exist primarily to give driftless, artistic-minded people in their late 20s something to do for a couple of years while they figure shit out…

    The only graduate degree that has not significantly increased in cost in the past decade: a business degree. Probably because business students can do math. (This should not be interpreted as advice to go to business school.)

  9. @AWD: “subprime auto loans.” The Chrysler 300 – the Neegrow car – I’ve heard that 60% of Chrysler’s loans are subprime.

  10. Zara – Actually, one of the few areas “growing” in legal services is tax law. Almost every business now has to hire a tax lawyer to figure it all out.

    I did question his wanting to move to California, though… that never seemed like a bright idea.

  11. “Here are the eleven schools in PayScale’s data with a 20-year net return worse than negative-$30,000.” —— from the article

    All but two of those schools are located in the South. Not sure if that means anything … just an observation.

  12. Stucky, generally speaking the shittiest colleges are in the south and midwest while the best are in the west and northeast. This applies to both public and private.

  13. “Every month that Gregory Zbylut pays $1,300 toward his law school loans is another month of not qualifying for a decent mortgage” ———- from AWD’s article

    A $15,600 expense ANNUALLY? hahaha, he better make a shitload of money to qualify for a mortgage.

    Assuming that’s his ONLY debt, he makes $72,000 /yr, has a 3% down payment, at 6% interest, 30 year term ………….. his maximum home price would be $155k. Add another $400 in expenses for a car and a credit card, and he can buy a $110k house. Good luck with that.

  14. The truth is, the liberal progressives that run the college and university system have ripped off consumers, and stolen piles of redistributed money from taxpayers into the hands of communist administrators and professors that prepare students for a communist revolution more than preparing them for a job or a career. They’ve also prepared white students to be second class citizens, and bow to quotas and affirmative action in the workplace. The value of a college education has been diluted into nothingness. Higher education is almost as destructive to our society as our public school system, although both work to indoctrinate and brainwash the students while providing nothing of value in the real working world.


    The Keynesian Cargo Cult is stubbornly blind to the two key dynamics of the real-world economy: diminishing returns and the S-Curve. Diminishing returns result when a system’s ability to produce an economically valuable output declines.

    Higher education is a good example: tuition has soared $1,100% while the output (value of a college degree) has declined precipitously. A recent major study, Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses, concluded that “American higher education is characterized by limited or no learning for a large proportion of students.”

    Meanwhile, student loans exceed $1 trillion, only 37% of freshmen at four-year colleges graduate in four years (58% finally graduate in six years), and 53% of recent college graduates under the age of 25 are unemployed or doing work they could have done without going to college–retail clerks, waiting tables, etc.

    The Keynesian Cargo Cult solution to the diminishing returns is to provide more debt to students, making them into debt-serfs for life. The cruel stupidity and immorality of the Keynesian Cargo Cult knows no bounds because they refuse to accept the reality that diminishing returns cannot be fixed by more debt and more squandering of good money after bad.

    The truth is the failed cartel of higher education has to be leapfrogged and left in the dustbin of history

  15. Stucky, that guy could perhaps still get a decent deal on a nice 2 bed condo on the far north side of Chicago for $110K. I’m sure, though, that he doesn’t want the far north side, but would want Lincoln Park or downtown. Good luck finding anything decent for less than $400K there.

    And he wants to move to coastal CA on $72K a year and $1300 a month student loans? I hope he likes what he can get for $1000 a month there. A 1940-vintage 800 sq ft crap shack in a dodgy neighborhood is selling for about $500K.

    This guy sounds like he has based his decisions on fantasies and delusions.

  16. My advisor in college was also the pre-law advisor. He was a Rhodes Scholar, valedictorian at Haaarvard, etc. In the early/mid ’80s he was telling students that unless they could get into a top tier law school not to bother; they’d just end up as ambulance chasers.

    Of course, one could argue that those of my classmates who got into those schools and went on to jobs with the nation’s top tier law firms and/or gov’ment had it the worst of all: they work more than slaves. The first wife enjoys his labor, gets to spends some (just reward–she helped him the most), but it is usually the second or third geisha wife who makes out like a bandit.

  17. Would student loan forgiveness trigger hyperinflation? With the stage set for it through national debt, end of petrodollar, etc., could it be the tipping point? I don’t think I’ve seen anyone talk about what effect it would have on inflation.

  18. Student loan forgiveness would break several private lenders, but as long as they (the government) tightened up the lending I kind of doubt it would lead to hyperinflation.

    After all, most of these grads are barely scraping by, and are making minimum payments, if any, on their student loans. Instead, these people would be able to get on with their lives. For those who quit before getting the degree, it erases a very costly mistake. For those who actually got the degree, it puts them ahead.

    But it will never happen. Student loan forgiveness would touch off a massive firestorm as people who actually worked their asses off to pay back on loans would erupt in anger.

    Given the direction our country is going, I think they will eventually do a student loan forgiveness program, but it will only be for abject failures. The guy with no family connections that managed to become an MD but now has 200k in student loans will have to pay his back, while the jackass with the degree in underwater basket weaving who works slinging coffee will get their slate erased.

    Its all about dat redistribution bro.

  19. TPC, I scarcely see how forgiving student loan debt would make those paying on their loans any angrier than people like me, who paid rent for decades and were priced out of sensible loans by the housing rampage of the 00s, and finally paid all cash for a place, are at the the help and subsidies and forgiveness extended to the po’ homeborrowers of that era. Let me tell you that I’m BOILING with rage, but so far have managed to refrain from going on shooting rampages or committing any other acts of mayhem to express my rage at seeing people who make 3X as much money as I do being forgiven loan deficiencies of $50,000 or more, often much more, or getting principle writedowns of 50% of their $500K loans, or being allowed to squat rent-free for 4 years in a $334K condo and then being PAID $12,000 by the bank to vacate the place.

    What the fuck makes home loan borrowers and home owners so fucking sacred while a bunch of ignorant young people who signed on to these loans in desperation to better themselves, and who do not have decades of adult experience behind them, are thrown to the wolves?


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