Tag Archives: mba

Screw you, Sallie Mae, and your unconsolidation-able loan

I know unconsolidation-able isn’t a word, but that’s exactly what it is. I received an email today from Sallie Mae notifying me that my interest rate just went up from 6.8% to 9.25%. WTH!  After I tried to consolidate 3 months ago and was told that I couldn’t, then they go and increase the interest rate?

Needless to say, I just submitted a online payment for the balance. Luckily, the balance at Sallie Mae was $4k. Now off to tackle the loans that I was actually able to consolidate. Yuck.

I am still interested in an MBA, but not sure how smart it is to spend $100k+ and whatever interest rate it fancies someone to charge. Getting out of debt just to jump back into it with another $100k ball and chain with no guarantee of a large salary increase or job security is mighty scary.

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Is an MBA worth it?

I’ve been kicking around this question for myself, which is ironic, because if someone asked me if I thought it was worth it, my typical immediate response is “depends.” But as I’ve become more and more involved in hiring the past few years, I’ve realized a couple things:

  1. Your experience, personality, and attitude will take you way farther than a MBA will

–         MBA may get you in the door but won’t keep you safe unless you can perform

2. Unless you have an MBA from a top school, no one cares

3. We don’t want high level MBAs unless we’re hiring for the “wow” factor (to impress the client, for an executive level position that we’re going to use to market with, etc)

A full-time MBA program can easily cost you $80 – 100k and 2 years of precious earning power.  Assuming an average salary for those entering a graduate program of $70k, that is $140k over 2 years, plus benefits, 401k matches, etc.   Medical and other fringe benefits run approximately 30-40% of your base salary, and companies typically offer about 4-6% match on 401ks. Assuming an 8% 401k deduction with 4% company match on a $70k salary, comes to $8,400 per annum.

Benefits (though not included in the salary you receive, are still benefits to you and should be considered as such) add another $24,500 on top of that – so add those together for the 2 years and the costs for attending a full-time MBA program roughly $205k.

Then there’s the time it takes to actually pay off and earn a return on your investment. This article from Newsweek states that MBA grads average about $75k, with only 4% exceeding the $150k mark. PoetsandQuants is now reporting that elite MBA’ers from schools such as Stanford and Harvard take about 10 years or so to recoup the costs of their MBA, with Columbia coming in last of the top 10 at 12.8 years.  If those aren’t dire stats, then I don’t know what is.

So my final determination?  I’m still clueless.  We’ll see.

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Is it worth attending doctorate program to earn $60,500?

Would you attend a doctorate program costing $50,000 (on top of $30,000 already spent for a graduate program), only to earn an additional $15,000/annually?   Troy and Maryna Welker are a young, newly married couple, both teachers.  He makes $45,500 as a special education teacher, and she works part-time, earning $11,975.

This couple is doing everything right, and if they make the changes the advisor suggested to them, I have no doubt that they’re off to a happy future.  The thing that stood out to me in this was the fact that attending a doctorate program would only increase his earnings by $15,000.  Over the life of his career, the planner estimates that it adds up to $670,000.  And it’s not as though his earning power is that high now, it’s $45,500.  MBAs typically graduate with $80,000+ job offers, so it’s surprising and disappointing that one of the most important professions has such a low pay grade.  I admire his dedication to his profession and hope he has all the success he deserves.

(Seattle Times)

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