Should Parents Pay for University?

A good comment from my post a couple of days ago from a recent Graduate from my Alma Mater, was, “Why do you think you must pay for your kids education?”. That’s a good question, and the answer I have is, I don’t think I HAVE to pay for it, and if my kids say to me, “I want to pay for this myself”, I think I would be delighted, but I don’t want a situation to arise where one of my children cannot take advantage of a post-secondary opportunity because she or he thinks it is too expensive.

A lot of the people who I view as financially intelligent paid for their own University Educations, and they may not say it, but seem quite proud of that fact. My parents on the other hand paid for my education, so there are two ways to look at this idea.

I guess I’ll only really know about all of this once they reach the University age, but I do have money put away already to deal with at least the first couple of years of education.

I think this is why my generation has been dubbed the “sandwich” generation because we want to take care of everyone, our aging parents and our kids. Maybe we are just a generation of wanna-be martyrs as well.

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  • Frugal Guy with Balance April 1, 2012, 11:56 AM

    To me an education can be considered an Asset that will be utilized to produce income for many years in the future.

    I told my Kids get an education where you can get a job at the end. No basket weaving courses!

    No pain no gain. Kids need some skin in the game in the form of paying for there education. I paid for there first year.

    On is a pharmacist the other a consultant.

    By the way I am damn proud of both of them!

    Reply
    • bigcajunman April 1, 2012, 12:31 PM

      Good synopsis, and I agree with your point about doing something that you can make a living doing (but it better be something you WANT to do as well).

      Reply
  • Sustainable PF April 27, 2011, 7:43 AM

    TBH – I think kids should pay for the majority of their own education. Why?

    1) Appreciate it all. The cost, the value. Don’t blow it b/c it won’t impact you.
    - I know kids who got the free ride who dropped out, didn’t care or try. The primary reason was that it wasn’t going to impact their bottom line. Lots did care, but there was no accountability.

    2) Understand that to get something in life you have to earn it. Unless you worked a ton for your folks, this is just a massive financial present.

    Reply
    • bigcajunman April 27, 2011, 12:24 PM

      I agree with these points, but I also see the other side of the argument, and it is an interesting argument, that is for sure.

      Reply
  • Freddie @ Real Estate Investing October 15, 2010, 8:01 AM

    HELL NO!

    I think students should pay for their own university through scholarships, grants, and loans if necessary. It is understandable that you don’t want them to start of life with debt, but you cannot go broke in the process either.

    Reply
  • Steve June 6, 2006, 9:30 AM

    I like what my parents did… they loaned me the money with the understanding that if I passed and got my degree, I did not have to pay them back, but if I did not, I owed it to them.

    I suppose if you can’t really trust your kids you could co-sign a loan in their name to back up the deal.

    The plus side is they get the benefit of the “earned” feeling, and if their grades start slipping they turn it around because they don’t want to get stuck with that debt AND a low paying job because they didn’t graduate, but by the same token, when they do graduate, it’s a huge help not to start life with the big whack of debt.

    (Plus, you can say that’s their graduation present, and not have to buy them a car, saving you even more money =p).

    Reply

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