NYU Business School Fail

May 25, 2010 by  
Filed under Fools of Finance

You must watch this video blog post about a recent graduate of NYU’s undergraduate business program. The guy is depressed and collapsing under $275,000 in student loan debt.

That’s right – $275k for an undergraduate business degree that qualifies him to ….  manage a Starbucks?

There are so many problems with this story.

First, the guy turned down a full scholarship offer from another college so he could gain all of the “benefits” of living and learning in Manhattan. His payoff: Sharing an apartment over a garage with two others – in Pennsylvania. He now has a two hour commute – each way – to his job. Wow – dreams fulfilled.

He regrets his decision, of course, and acknowledges that he did the math before enrolling. But he chose to ignore the big debt number staring him in the face on the calculator. He would worry about it later. Later has arrived, big time.

The other big problem is with NYU. It is shameful that it would allow an undergraduate to enroll without BIG GIANT WARNINGS against graduating with a bachelor’s degree and a six figure debt load. This is a BUSINESS program after all. But tuition dollars are more important than business sense to NYU, and to most other universities.

It’s b-school malpractice in my opinion. Would you trust the business education of someone who puts himself in this position?

Here is the link to the sad but true video.

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10 Responses to “NYU Business School Fail”
  1. morrison says:

    So let me get this straight: Ryan had a full scholarship to another college but he chose to go to NYU Business and take out full student loans in order to pay for it. he knew what he was doing, he knew it was wrong, he knew the numbers didn’t jive but he was HEDGING that once he graduated with a Business degree from NYU his student debt would magically disappear?

    Ryan sounds like a real idiot.

    And the problem is? It’s NYU’s fault for not advising it’s BUSINESS students how to financially handle their lives. Uh, what were they teaching in the courses? How to row, row, row your boat? Wasn’t he taking BUSINESS courses?

    And he lives in PA and travels 4 hours a day so he can work in NYC after he graduated. What? There aren’t any jobs in all of PA? Uh huh.

    As I said, Ryan is not too bright.

    Would you like Obama to give him a bailout? Like the homeowners who signed on the dotted line and bought houses with no money down and HEDGED they could flip them for bigger bucks in a few years? Would you like Obama to provide him with a comfy, 1000 sq ft apartment in Manhattan? Want me to give Bloomberg a call for him?

    Ryan got his degree. Now, he has found out, just like the rest of us, that he actually has to WORK for a living and it ain’t always pretty. His NYU degree can open up some top quality doors and in a few years, if Ryan develops a brain, he could get a few annual bonuses and use those to pay off his student debt.

    Save the violins for the po’ folk in Louisianna and the Gulf Coast. Thems hurting people. Ryan’s a joke.

  2. Rick Beagle says:

    How can someone accrue that kind of debt in college, or more to the point, who would lend someone that kind of money (Sally Mae?)? I am sure a lot of this is the result of penalties and other costs, but geez, how bloody stupid can people be?

    No way to regulate stupidity.

    Rick Beagle

  3. Holly says:

    He and I share something in common: I rec’d a full scholarship to Rutgers University and turned it down simply because I wanted to get the heck out of NJ! Here, this guy wanted to be close to NJ! Go figure!

    It was a painful lesson for me: 4 yrs. of college turned into 4 years, plus 2 more going half-time (so 6 total after I decided to change my major) so I graduated 2 years late w/ $36,000 of debt back in 1994! And then I got married w/3 children (so I stayed home anyway)!!! My poor, literally POOR, husband had to pay off my loans.

    I can’t take all of the blame, though…my parents never explained to me that I would be the one paying for it all since they ended up divorcing while I was in college (and neither one wanted to fulfill their promise of financial assistance).

    The guy in the story needs to do himself a favor and grovel to his parents to allow him to move back home and live rent-free for 5 years, make sure to earn $40,000 to $50,000 a year, and pay off those loans! Or can he default? Not the best idea, but if I were him, I would have to consider it!

  4. kitty says:

    I am with Morrison and Rich on this. If you want to study business, you should have some aptitude to it – like being able to add the numbers. Oh wait, he knew the numbers but thought he’d get a nice 6-digit salary on Wall Street with bonuses that would enable him to repay the loans. Then crisis hit.

    He made an investment decision and it turned out to be a stupid one. It could’ve worked, but it didn’t. Not much different from investing all your money in GM bonds.

    • MasterPo says:

      Part of that is the schools (not just NYU) convincing students they can graduate with just a Bachelors and perhaps a few interships experience at most then land a high 5-figure or even 6-figure job.

      Very very rare.

      • kitty says:

        So true. Which is why it’s important to to believe advertising and do one’s own research about future prospects.

        It’s not much of a news that Bachelors in business isn’t enough. I knew it when I was in college and that was in late 70s – early 80s. Even then some students I know who wanted to go into business talked that a BS in Engineering and an MBA is better than a simple Bachelors in Business Admiistration. I had a guy in a CS class I was TAing who wanted to go into business – he was doing a BS/CS and was planning to get a job and then try to get the company pay for his MBA. Some other kids as well – and these were regular students in a state school (University of Illinois – Urbana), not geniuses.

        Did it change? Was there a period during the bubble in which a simple Bachelors in business could make tons of money?

        • Larry says:


          I hate to tell you but the University of Illinois – Urbana is home to one of the top 3 engineering/business programs in the country. I am sure they were not just average.

  5. Jack Clark says:

    “Or can he default? Not the best idea, but if I were him, I would have to consider it”

    If he tries to default on a student loan he will either get sued by the government or the private company that holds the loan, get his wages garnished by the IRS, forfeit any tax return refund by the IRS, or have any federal benefits he may get garnished until the debt is paid.

    I’m not an bankruptcy attorney but I believe that trying to default or have student loan debt discharged is possible but extremely difficult.

    It truly is the one type of debt that will follow you until you’re dead.

  6. David says:

    Guaranteed student loans are as good for students as zero down, neg am loans were for home buyers. The result in both cases is that the cost skyrockets because of the easy money. We have a college tuition bubble. No different than the housing bubble. Prices are disconnected from value to such an extreme, a crash seems inevitable.

    Just my opinion.

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