How much should I spend on my education?
February 9, 2014 10:41 AM Subscribe
Go to the far away, cheap nursing school, or close, expensive one?
posted by queens86 to Work & Money (16 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
As the proud owner of an insanely expensive, relatively useless liberal arts B.A., I have decided to go back to school for an accelerated BSN (Bachelor's in nursing). I live in NYC and have been accepted to Binghamton's 12-month program, which I understand is around 3 hours upstate (I haven't actually visited yet). The tuition and fees for the whole year there come to around $24k. I have been wait-listed at Columbia, which I estimate to be somewhere between $40k-$75k, depending on financial aid. I am also debating applying to NYU (around $90k) and Pace (around $50k).
Now, the dilemma is that, although I am a very frugal person and the cheaper tuition is very appealing to me -- I would go to Binghamton if it were in the city in a second -- I also am having a really hard time stomaching the idea of moving out of the city for a year. I've been here for about two years, which is the longest I have lived in the same place since graduating college 5 years ago, and I have absolutely zero desire to move, settle in again, furnish a place, make new friends, or generally "go away to school" (been there, done that). I also have a very serious boyfriend who I live with and I admit I don't want to lose that support when I enter what is rumored to be a very stressful program.
I have the means to pay for any of these programs upfront, but obviously I would much rather have some money left over for graduate school, down payment on a house, wedding, etc. If I paid $90k to go to NYU I really would not have anything left when I graduated. I am 27 so some of these things may be coming up in the not-too-distant future. I have no debt.
My question is, what do I do?! I change my mind daily about this. As far as I know, name doesn't matter for nursing (although I want to work in the city and I think going to NYU/Columbia might give me a little advantage since I would do my clinicals here). On the one hand, I think I should just suck it up, move to Binghamton and come home on the weekends every once in a while, and stick it out to get a fast 12 months degree and be done, having spent relatively little money. On the other hand, I think -- I won't be in debt either way, I know people who have gone to NYU and think it was well worth the money, and it would be SO convenient (a 20 minute commute from my apartment). No moving, no new roommates, and I'd have my boyfriend to lean on and my friends in the city.
So, does anyone have any advice for me? Obviously, some of this is speculation since I've only been admitted to one school, but I have a good GPA, recs, etc. so I am fairly sure I could get into NYU or Pace (and could get off the wait-list at Columbia). I have until April to put down a deposit at Binghamton, which is enough time to apply for other schools but I may not hear back from them by that time.
Thanks in advance, sorry for length!