This past April, facing the prospect of three 20-page papers due in the same week, Indiana University East student Harmony Glenn had a panic attack in the school library.
“I couldn’t breathe, and my chest felt tight,” she said. “I was asking myself, ‘Do I push forward…or do I cut my losses?’”
Glenn, 27, had been inching toward a bachelor’s degree since 2004, transferring schools and taking breaks from her studies to switch her major, live with her parents to save money, and later move around Indiana with her husband to chase the best-paying jobs. Lately, she’d been working fulltime as a sales associate for a skin care retailer in an Indianapolis mall, and didn’t have the bandwidth to focus on her schoolwork.
The night of her panic attack, she made a decision to leave school. “I just looked at the bills and realized this didn’t make sense anymore,” she said."
I wrote about the modern nightmare: having $60,000 worth of student loans and no degree to show for it.
I am from: Detroit, MI.
I currently live in: Detroit, MI.
I currently live with: Wife & Dog.
Level of education completed: Bachelors of Science.
Occupation: Bio/Computer Sci/Environmental Sci Teacher (High School).
Do you consider yourself an adult? Yes.
When did you become an adult? When I no longer was dependent on my parents.
10 years from now I see myself: Here. With children. Doing more or less the same thing.
How likely do you think it is that you will eventually get what you want out of life? Done. Love, community, friendship. I have been blessed to have gotten all of these.
What is the biggest concern in your life right now? Keeping my wife and my dog happy. Enjoying life.
A project after my own heart.
Do you know anyone (you?) who dropped out of college, and therefore has student debt but no diploma to show for it? Would love to hear from you. Email me at nona.aronowitz at nbcuni.com.
Back in the saddle again.
I explain how the post-recession economy has affected Millennials’ views on love and sex for the Roosevelt Institute’s new video series. Please excuse my upward glance…my interviewee was standing up :)
This is why Aaron keeps “joking” about moving to Jackson.
Installment #3: the Cleve!
My series on where Millennials can make it just launched at Atlantic Cities today! Omaha is up first, then 8 more cities in the next two weeks.
"The details are a complicated jumble of legal stipulations, incentives and budget breakdowns. But the sentiment is simple, resonant and oozing with patriotism: Why not use the billions already pledged for transit manufacturing to create jobs for Americans, particularly low-income people of color who typically miss out on these opportunities? ‘We’re paying for that with our fares, with our tax dollars,’ Janis says. ‘We should have the jobs that go with them.’"
I wrote a piece for Next City about the future of manufacturing, featuring pretty photos by my talented boo Aaron Cassara! It costs $1.99 like last time—or you can just break down and get a subscription. Forefront’s longform reporting really is topnotch.