The Debt Conversation: let’s talk (1 Viewer)

andy001

Well-Known Member
Hey all,

I read one of the older threads on student debt through film school. I’ve been kind of overthinking things but the whole debt is concerning me a bit (this happens every couple months when I think harder about it, 😕). I’m already like 70k in the hole and I love the program but I’m really debating and dreading the fact that I’ll cross the 100k mark by next year and whether I should stay or not. I figured this was a good place to talk to about such things, is there a good way to start a thread about this again? I know there’s been several thread but I’d like to talk to some current students and see how they feel about it. Let me know! Thanks!
 

andy001

Well-Known Member
Are you living on campus? Do you have roommates? Are you living frugally? I’m very curious. I have been weighing living at the graduate apartment housing or finding someone with an apartment who needs a roommate.
Yes, I live with my friend from undergrad. Pretty frugal, I suppose. I pay 1600 for rent, which is pretty good considering I live in Santa Monica. The graduate student housing is pretty expensive to be honest. I’d see if you can live two roommates, you could probably pay around 1100 which is what I was going to do but I opted to pay a little more if I could afford it.
 

aaaaa

Well-Known Member
Yes, I live with my friend from undergrad. Pretty frugal, I suppose. I pay 1600 for rent, which is pretty good considering I live in Santa Monica. The graduate student housing is pretty expensive to be honest. I’d see if you can live two roommates, you could probably pay around 1100 which is what I was going to do but I opted to pay a little more if I could afford it.
1600 and you have a roommate!? Damn that’s expensive! Ugghhh Los Angeles!! Whyyyy? But cheaper than graduate student housing. Graduate Student housing is like 2,200 a month I think. Talk about insane!! I’ve budgeted 1200 a month for rent and utilities. I’m hoping I can find someplace close to that. The thing with loans is that you can afford the extra few hundred a month now. But that shit ads up. Of your 70k in debt 6k (8.5%) of it is that extra amount of rent for the nicer apartment and one less roommate. In 3 years that extra rent for one less roommate is 18k! You want to stay under 100k, maybe you should consider moving. You could still save 12k over the course of the next 2 years
 

andy001

Well-Known Member
1600 and you have a roommate!? Damn that’s expensive! Ugghhh Los Angeles!! Whyyyy? But cheaper than graduate student housing. Graduate Student housing is like 2,200 a month I think. Talk about insane!! I’ve budgeted 1200 a month for rent and utilities. I’m hoping I can find someplace close to that. The thing with loans is that you can afford the extra few hundred a month now. But that shit ads up. Of your 70k in debt 6k (8.5%) of it is that extra amount of rent for the nicer apartment and one less roommate. In 3 years that extra rent for one less roommate is 18k! You want to stay under 100k, maybe you should consider moving. You could still save 12k over the course of the next 2 years
Now do you see why dropping out is a viable option? Lol. Most grad students are 2200 for theirs, so I’m considering myself lucky. 1600 is a lot, and yes it will certainly add up. I got two job interviews this week so hopefully I can start paying on my own. It doesn’t make a difference to me because either way I have to take out those loans to make it in LA, I intend on refinancing them with Sofi upon graduation.
 

andy001

Well-Known Member
1600 and you have a roommate!? Damn that’s expensive! Ugghhh Los Angeles!! Whyyyy? But cheaper than graduate student housing. Graduate Student housing is like 2,200 a month I think. Talk about insane!! I’ve budgeted 1200 a month for rent and utilities. I’m hoping I can find someplace close to that. The thing with loans is that you can afford the extra few hundred a month now. But that shit ads up. Of your 70k in debt 6k (8.5%) of it is that extra amount of rent for the nicer apartment and one less roommate. In 3 years that extra rent for one less roommate is 18k! You want to stay under 100k, maybe you should consider moving. You could still save 12k over the course of the next 2 years
I’m curious too, do you have any debt from undergrad? See for me, I had virtually no debt (10k, which seems like small fries now) when I finished undergrad. So I’m kind of like wondering/hoping this is worth it. If not, then a lifetime of debt will accrue. So be it.
 

aaaaa

Well-Known Member
Now do you see why dropping out is a viable option? Lol. Most grad students are 2200 for theirs, so I’m considering myself lucky. 1600 is a lot, and yes it will certainly add up. I got two job interviews this week so hopefully I can start paying on my own. It doesn’t make a difference to me because either way I have to take out those loans to make it in LA, I intend on refinancing them with Sofi upon graduation.
No I don’t fully understand why you’re considering dropping out. You’re going farther into debt each year with your living expenses than the Lmu tuition. If this is about debt, which this convo is, you should cut back in living expenses. If you get another roommate that’s 12k savings. That’s over 25% of the tuition you have left to pay!
But if you have job interviews that’s awesome. Yeah I’d drop out if I got a solid job too probably. Gainful employment is definitely a game changer in this industry!!!
 

aaaaa

Well-Known Member
I’m curious too, do you have any debt from undergrad? See for me, I had virtually no debt (10k, which seems like small fries now) when I finished undergrad. So I’m kind of like wondering/hoping this is worth it. If not, then a lifetime of debt will accrue. So be it.
I am debt free currently! I graduated from undergrad 10 years ago. I’ve been working as a finance manager for years. I have some savings set aside to help with this career change. But will have to take out a loan still.
But being a finance manager and having a background in that field makes me a solid budgeter.
 

andy001

Well-Known Member
No I don’t fully understand why you’re considering dropping out. You’re going farther into debt each year with your living expenses than the Lmu tuition. If this is about debt, which this convo is, you should cut back in living expenses. If you get another roommate that’s 12k savings. That’s over 25% of the tuition you have left to pay!
But if you have job interviews that’s awesome. Yeah I’d drop out if I got a solid job too probably. Gainful employment is definitely a game changer in this industry!!!
Yea that’s true, my living expenses are really what added up and unfortunately that’s gonna be what bites me in the ass in the end. It was really the only way to make it work, to be honest. Living in LA is not always easy financially so I tried to take advantage of loans because frankly I needed them since the first year workload would not allow me to get a job. Going into the second year I’m hoping I could make this more workable. Either way, I’ll have a lot of debt but I suppose it’s not the end of the world. It’s just another monthly payment for 25 years until it’s forgiven. Hopefully one good script pays all of it off lol
 

andy001

Well-Known Member
I am debt free currently! I graduated from undergrad 10 years ago. I’ve been working as a finance manager for years. I have some savings set aside to help with this career change. But will have to take out a loan still.
But being a finance manager and having a background in that field makes me a solid budgeter.
Good for you, I think back often to this time last year and envision my life pre grad school. I’m certainly happier but I’m always thinking what life would have been had I just stayed at my job with minimal debt and stayed working in a simple life. I will say that film school will 100% open doors because I’ve already landed some great PA gigs with directors I’ve dreamed of working with. So I don’t entirely regret it, I just wish it was cheaper and more monetarily easy.
 

aaaaa

Well-Known Member
Good for you, I think back often to this time last year and envision my life pre grad school. I’m certainly happier but I’m always thinking what life would have been had I just stayed at my job with minimal debt and stayed working in a simple life. I will say that film school will 100% open doors because I’ve already landed some great PA gigs with directors I’ve dreamed of working with. So I don’t entirely regret it, I just wish it was cheaper and more monetarily easy.
What was your career before grad school? We’re you happy?

I hated finance.
 

andy001

Well-Known Member
What was your career before grad school? We’re you happy?

I hated finance.
I was a leasing agent at an apartment complex. It wasn’t bad per se, but I knew I was meant for something bigger. I knew I’d never move up and would just go from job to job. The pay sucked, but I guess I was happy. It was during a pandemic, so I was grateful to be working. I’m easy to please, and the reason I was happy was because I was applying to film schools. I had made many shorts in undergrad but until you get to a place like LA, you can’t really realize your full potential. I’m grateful I got into LMU because at the very least, it gives you foot in the door to live in LA. So while I don’t regret it, it’s hard not to envision the other route I could have taken. I just don’t know if I would’ve been happier and honestly I would have eventually applied to film school either way because I couldn’t live with the idea of not at least trying to go for what I want!
 

Chris W

Willem was robbed
Staff member
Wow! I imagine those people are syaing "I just want to try and keep it under 200k of debt"

Good point lol. LMU honestly has it really good compared to all of those. I just heard of someone who is around 300-400k in debt from Columbia’s program.
Columbia can get pretty insane. And it's a 4 year program. It used to be 5.

Here's an older thread on it:

 
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