When I think of spring break, I think of MTV and early 20-somethings soaking up the sun. I believe that this ideal spring break is becoming more and more mythical with the rising costs of education. Classism enables wealthy students to obtain degrees debt free while low-income and working-class students are faced with more and more debt. I would love to spend spring break on a beach somewhere with a margarita, but for me that is not an option.
I am a part-time student currently trying to find a way to finance a full-time education. I am responsible for paying my own rent, bills and other living expenses. I do not have the luxury to dance around in a bikini at 2 p.m. on live television.
To me an ideal spring break would be a stress-free one, where I wouldn’t be concerned with money or time management, I would just be able to relax. Everyone needs a break every now and then, but how many college students actually get one?
Sitting On a Pile of Debt vs. Beaches
Countless students are currently working to put themselves through college or grad school, and many more graduates face thousands of dollars in debt. The cost of higher education in America is unaffordable to working-class and low-income families, and leaves middle-income families economically strained. The fact is that young people today do not have as many options as our parents and grandparents had.
In an age of credentials, we are basically required to achieve at least a bachelor’s degree upon entering the work force. However, there are more college graduates than jobs, and the rising costs of living have left many millennials with ludicrous amounts of debt that their measly salaries simply do not allow them to afford.
[gdlr_quote align=”center” ]To me an ideal spring break would be a stress-free one, where I wouldn’t be concerned with money or time management, I would just be able to relax.”[/gdlr_quote]
You can pay your off your student loans monthly and still see the numbers climb due to interest. This causes anyone whose family was unable to pay for their further education in full, to be at a huge disadvantage from their wealthy counterparts.
The American dream is broken, you can longer “make it,” with hard work alone. In order to make money, you need to start with it. Our education system is making it increasingly harder for folks to better their lives. Capitalism is designed to keep people in their respective place and classism and its effect on education is just a small part of the problem.