Beat the col­lege debt trap

Cecil Whig - - & & -

Over the hol­i­days, I was chat­ting with my sis­ter-in­law, who’s a fi­nan­cial ad­vi­sor for a highly re­spected fi­nan­cial ser vices or­ga­ni­za­tion that’s in the top 100 of the For­tune 500. We were talk­ing about the value of a col­lege ed­u­ca­tion com­pared to the out­ra­geously high cost to go to col­lege th­ese days.

She asked me to rec­om­mend a book or re­source that she can of­fer to her clients to help them nav­i­gate stu­dent loans, per­sonal sav­ings, schol­ar­ships and sav­ings pro­grams. She was hop­ing for an all-in-one book that would be easy to read and un­der­stand. Sadly, I couldn’t even give her one re­source.

But that was last fall, and this is now. I am very ex­cited that there is such a source to­day: a new book by Alex Che­diak, called “Beat­ing the Col­lege Debt Trap: Get­ting a De­gree With­out Go­ing Broke.”

I was hope­ful when the pub­lisher asked me to read the man­u­script — hope­ful that some­one would fi­nally nail this dif­fi­cult topic and of­fer re­al­is­tic so­lu­tions for or­di­nary peo­ple.

Once I got into the man­u­script, I was do­ing the happy dance. Che­diak spares no punches, com­ing at the sub­ject from his ex­pe­ri­ence as a stu­dent and a col­lege pro­fes­sor. He knows his stuff. He dives right into the nit­tygritty of how to pay less for col­lege while get­ting mean­ing­ful work op­por­tu­ni­ties. He also ad­dresses how to pay off loans quickly (he rec­om­mends never tak­ing on more than $10,000 in stu­dent debt, which I agree is rea­son­able). He teaches the reader to spend less, save more and stay out of debt for good. Hon­estly, read­ing this book is like hear­ing my­self talk­ing.

MARY HUNT

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