Can you afford an education?

I received notification that my graduation was approved: 4.0 GPA – I finished in just about 4 years, while working a full time job, adopting 2 children, running two businesses and juggling many other responsibilities including life.

Almost immediately after receiving notification I received an email saying that it was time to start talking about paying back the school loans. I knew it was going to be tough to pay back the loans I had to take to go to school, I just didn’t realize it would be this tough. Almost 7% interest, the payments for 10 years are going to be close to $600 a month.  WHAT?!?  I haven’t seen any tangible income earning potential as a result of this new found degree, and I certainly won’t see $600 dollars a month worth – probably EVER.  So what am I supposed to do, where am I supposed to find this new found income?

Even worse, is that I know I received my degree with about 40% less debt than most college students, first, I didn’t stay on campus, second after 17+ years in the field of Information Technology, I was able to petition out of a lot of courses, showing a mastery of expertise in many various and sundry topics, while saving almost 1/4 the price of many of the classes.

So, I spent 4 years paying the university to approve my learning as I was teaching myself; and for it, I no better job, no better job opportunities, no more income coming in; but somehow, I have to come up with another $600 a month.  Where?  It’s not there…  It’s going to be like squeezing blood from a stone.