A Student Loan Story
STUDENT LOAN HELL
I have been taking this time to educate myself on student loans. My loans go back 15+ years. It is true that as a young kid, you just want to accomplish graduating from college. I too, didn't pay attention to what I was signing, never took the time to read, or understand the terms or conditions of the loans. I recall going to the vestibule of the college and the registar had all the loan documents filled out and all I had to do is sign on the dotted line. I don't know what the hell I signed. Once I did asked "what is this"?, because it didn't look the same as the other notes, she said that "it's the same subsidized loan you received for the last two years". Later I found out she lied. I complained to administration, but the college probably got a kickback for psuhing these loans on the poor kids.
Anyhoo, I had been unable to pay back the loans for some years, my mom was terminal with breats cancer a year after I finished college so I had to care for her for four years. After that it was a bitch trying to get my employment life and head together. I never made much more than minimum wage and kept contact with Sallie Mae and any other collectors. Then, in 2002, I landed a job with the State Government of New Jersey, in the inner city for Child Protective Services and thought that loan forgiveness would work in my favor. I contacted the collector (HESSA) and stated that I am working and making $400.00 per week, but since I commuted to the city I had no money to pay the full amount. They wouldn't accept anything less. I fought at work and got a raise, called and told the collector that I got a raise and will start voluntarily sending out payments in the next two weeks. Before I could get my paycheck in my hand, the garnishment was in and the default games began! NO 60 days, No allowance to remit voluntary payments. My loan amount has all but tripled. I am currently temporarily on disability. I'm sure that will be garnished momentarily.Currently, I have an opportunity to get back to school for an MA, for free, (good news) to teach. However, after I finish the program as long as I'm in default of a student loan in NJ, I will be denied teaching certification and licensure by the DOE. I need a career, I'm 40, and want to have a decent existence in life. What can I do to ensure that when I finish the program, I will be able to get the Cert. or License? It shouild take about 18 months, and I can only work part time during my enrollment. Of course my undergraduate transcripts are being held hostage. I'm sure the college won't just take my word that I have a B.A. HELP! I am willing to fight, I HAVE NO CHOICE!