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wtamow

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  1. If you didn't get that much during undergrad (which honestly, you should have unless your scholarships paid for everything) then I would definitely contact someone and ask why it is. You can already send in an application this year for OSAP. Is the estimate the comes with your application wrong this year? If so, where is the Doug Ford OSAP calculator? I'm operating under the assumption that my estimate for grant money is correct because it is a little bit lower -- but not that low.
  2. Yeah, I'm in a four year program. Due to my experience, I would probably urge people away from choosing more expensive schools and programs if they are uncertain they can afford it. The extra debt and stress is not worth it in the long run, that's all I'm trying to say in this thread.
  3. Personally I would love a study on how successful law students who live with their parents are vs the ones who don't. Because I haven't seen any consequences from that, and personally get envious of my friends who seem to have a much easier and low-stress time in school. But that's off topic.
  4. That's kind of my point. I chose to go there, and as a result the level of debt I will amass is going to be higher than I would have if I chose to go to Osgoode, etc. I think you yourself said that 45k of your debt is from undergrad? I think that makes a lot more sense than my original assumption (150k debt from law school alone).
  5. It really isn't that bad in undergrad, because in large university cities the student housing is built in a way that makes it comfortable. It was always clean and fairly better because we were all in the same program and could study together. I live with one person now (a law student) and we barely see each other. If I had wealthy parents or wanted to graduate and be saddled with 150k debt in the mid-20s (with no certainty that I'd make an 100k salary to pay it off in 10 years), then yeah I would choose to live alone. I think you are significantly overstating how much of an effect it would have on your academics unless you study at home. During 1L, I lived with one other person - a law student - and we barely saw each other because you're going to be busy. But hey, it is your choice. I don't really care. I just don't think 150k in debt is the average scenario, and the statistics back me up. If only 30% of the U of T class has over 100k in debt then that probably means that at schools that are more affordable, like Western, the level of debt is also much lower. I can strongly recommend filling out the financial aid bursary form at your school.
  6. When I think about all of the people I've met in 1L, and I exclude the people who didn't live at home, and then exclude the people who didn't live with "strangers" (i.e. other students??? sometimes even your classmates???)… then I'd probably get a small cohort of people whose parents were wealthy enough to pay their way. I have no idea which school you are going to, but the fb for my school was full of people looking for roommates etc during the summer before 1L.
  7. No, it wasn't free because I was taking around 5-6k in loans every year to afford to pay for food, rent. I left with around 15k. What is wrong with living with 3+ people?! I'm not living in the past @thedraper, I'm living in reality as a student who doesn't want to rack up debt. It was entirely normal and most people I knew during undergrad lived with multiple people, usually from the same program. It was actually quite a wholesome experience.
  8. I lived in one of these cities for 4 years... one bedroom in a house of 5-6 people was $500. This is what people mean when they say "living like students" -- the houses were pretty nice and luxurious, new builds. Very clean and 10 min walk to campus. A one bedroom alone would definitely cost you over $1000 but I don't see that as realistic or frugal for most students.
  9. I am taking the OP at their word, I'm just saying it isn't the average (statistics from the most expensive school in Ontario back me up here) and that OP is probably not living that bad of a lifestyle. And no, I've finished two years of LS already. Not approaching 150k in debt yet, lol. Some universities, in their financial aid guidelines, pay the interest in the form of a bursary before you leave school. These happen to be some of the pricier schools. If you are going to Osgoode why would you live in Toronto and not in a cheaper area of North York, where likely your fellow students will be local? Or Ottawa, or Western, or Queens? Renting a *nice* room near campus in Kingston or London, for example, is $450-550 a month. Those schools also provide free transit cards. So really you're looking at spending $1000 on everything put together at most, taking you to 90k provided you DON'T work during the summer. In my opinion, it is a lot more weird that someone would refuse to get a summer job than it is for them to be living at home. Your premise only works for expensive schools like U of T, and falls apart when you leave the GTA almost instantly. If someone doesn't want to saddle themselves with 150k in debt, wouldn't it be wiser to go to a more affordable school outside of Toronto? Not only that but as I've said, Ultra Vires did a survey and only 30% of the U of T class expects to graduate with more than 100k debt, so I really do think that 150k is a rare scenario that people should try to avoid. You also say that most U of T students do not get bursaries - this is false. The U of T financial aid program is really generous for those who come from lower income families, and offers stipends for even things like moving costs, laptops, trips back home etc. It used to be bursary first, then interest-free loan. So once again, I think students need to take these programs into account and actually participate in them if they are racking up 150k in loans.
  10. That is really odd, might have to do with scholarships but I've consistently received high amounts and so have people I know. Even in undergrad when my tuition was 5k after scholarships, I was getting around that much in bursary and a similar amount in loans. And I was talking more about the dual JD program, which I think is close to 50k/yr in tuition.
  11. Are you in Ontario? You should be getting a bursary from OSAP that is around that number if you are paying a 28k+ tuition. I'm not sure why you wouldn't be, coming right out of undergrad. I've received that much every single year and so have many of my classmates, even during undergrad. This year with recent education cuts I'm receiving on the lower end (5k) but still, it is quite shocking to me. If you are living away from home, and going to a school in Ontario, and straight out of undergrad... you should be receiving that much. Unless there is a factor I am missing, like you possess assets in your name or you are married to someone who owns assets or you are somehow inheriting massive amounts of income every year. Scholarships and bursaries are available too. Each school has a significant financial aid program that helps people that cannot afford the program, and factors in things like living away from home, laptop credits, etc. It is a student's responsibility to take advantage of these bursaries... I know many who don't... but it's there. That's all fine and good but I'm not sure why 60k of three years of tuition would morph into 150k of debt. Most university financial aid calculators assume that a student will be working during the summer. To me, it is weirder that a student who has financial troubles would not want to work during the summer. Non-legal work falls into this category, as many of my law school friends are doing non-legal work for 1L and are being paid just as much as they would at a law job. It's not ridiculous to assume that students will attain a summer job and use some of that money to pay for the next school year. It's also not ridiculous to assume that some cultures and nationalities of people live at home in their early 20s and don't end up mal-adjusted or whatever. It's also safe to assume that people who live with their parents still cook, clean and do their own laundry especially if they are from different cultures. It is also safe to assume that people who live with their parents while in law school are exploring the city and making friends in law school. But as I said, even if you leave home and rent a place (in York Region, Kingston, London, Ottawa etc) I don't know how you would rack up 150k debt in 3 years. That's 90k debt external to law school tuition itself. That's 30k a year that you're spending while in law school. That's not living like a pauper or a student. Sure, I don't disagree that a minority of people rack up that much debt at schools like Western or Osgoode, but they aren't living like "students" do. I'm not saying you have to live in a hostel and eat ramen noodles for every meal, but something doesn't add up to me unless you're going to a school with high tuition like U of T or Windsor.
  12. I don't live at home... but many of my classmates do live at home and they're doing just fine. Some of the most well-adjusted and successful people I've met -- probably because they're not weighed down by debt. And if you're starting law school right out of undergrad chances are you are 22-23... If you're renting in York Region (or Kingston, or London) feel free to increase that number by 20-30k. It is still no where near this mythical 150k figure. If you want to live away from home but are concerned with tuition costs, there are always cheaper schools. I just don't think that 150k is the norm, even without financial support from parents.
  13. The average law student doesn't have 150k+ in unsecured debt either, unless they went to an expensive school like U of T or Windsor. Actually I think it was an Ultra Vires survey that placed the U of T class debt over 100k at like 30%? That means around 70% of the class has less than 100k debt. 150k debt is the worst case scenario. Doing the math: Osgoode is 28k/yr with ancillary fees. You used to get around a ~5-7k bursary from OSAP, paired with any minor financial aid the school or government scholarships may offer, that's 20k/yr for three years = 60k/yr. Assuming you are living at home and working during the summer to pay off some of the debt you've accumulated, you can easily graduate with 30-50k depending on how decent you are with money. If going to U of T or Windsor means accumulating 150k in debt which you will be unable to pay unless you get a Bay St job (which only approx. 50% of the former's class gets anyway) then maybe it isn't the wisest financial decision...
  14. Plenty of people live off of 75k/year in the GTA. It is the average salary in Downtown Toronto itself...
  15. I don't think they give out physical copies of the TTC pass anymore, so you would have to load it on your Presto? It's a smart decision either way because if you lose the TTC pass, you must repurchase it... whereas if you lose the Presto you can just go online and order a new copy that will have your existing balance/passes loaded onto it. Not sure about the photo ID card though...
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