Tightwad Tech Podcast on $10K Degree

Earlier this week I was interviewed by Shawn and Mark of the Tightwad Tech Podcast at Element Opie Productions. That podcast was posted this morning (10/13/2011). My portion of the recording begins at the 12:30 mark.

Listen to the Podcast at their site.

A couple of points/corrections:

  1. I mentioned (off the top of my head at 32:00) that the cost of college has increased more than inflation and health care – but I didn’t have the numbers at the ready. Here they are. Since 1980, according to HuffPost:
    1. general inflation has risen “only” 300%
    2. health care costs have increased 700%
    3. college costs have increased 1000%
    4. So, to be accurate (I wasn’t in the podcast), college costs have gone up almost 50% more than health care costs, and over 3 times the general inflation rate.
  2. I mentioned the Vedder study about faculty salaries at UT-Austin at the 27:10 mark. More information about this is available in my Post #8 about the $10Kdegree.
  3. At 36:20, I mention that Western Governor’s enrollment is up to 15,000 students. It’s more like 25,000 students, according to their May, 2011 press release.
  4. Good gawd, I am a heavy breather. Really bothers me to listen to the audio as I sound like I’m gasping for air. I hope it doesn’t bother you as much as it bothers me.
The guys from Tightwad Tech were a pleasure to work with. I’m pretty sure that I’ll be a regular listerner from now on.
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Say What? How Big is Student Debt Load?

In a recent Educause Live webinar (10/10/11), Dr. David Wiley was speaking about “Openness: Decoupling the Future to Radically Improve Access to Education.” In that broadcast he used the slide below while stating that student loan debt exceeds mortgage debt. With all due respect to the learned Dr. Wiley, a man that I respect very much – ummh, sorry, but that’s not even close to being true.
My guess is that this one piece of erroneous information (in an otherwise great presentation) was just a simple mistake. About a year ago it was widely reported that student loan debt ($829B in Aug 2010) in the U.S. topped credit card debt ($826B) for the first time ever.  For a current figure, let’s consult the Student Loan Debt Clock.
So, currently, student loan debt is approaching 950 billion dollars. However, mortgage debt is much, MUCH, larger than the student debt loads. I’m finding conflicting data about the size of mortgage debt, but you’ll see numbers between $10 trillion and $14.6 trillion. That’s trillion, WITH A “T” – big difference between that and 948 billion. Just sayin.