My question is for academy graduates: How much debt did you acquire attending an academy? How long did it take you to pay it off? From a financial perspective, was the debt worth acquiring? Thanks for your time.
I took out around 70k. At the current rate I am paying it down I will be debt free 2 years after graduation. For me it was absolutely worth taking on the debt. After 5 years of working in a plating shop, I hated my low wage job dealing with heavy duty chemicals. Quiting that job and going to an Academy was the best decision of my life. Looking back part of me wishes I had hawse piped it, but getting a degree has it’s benefits, many of which I use on a daily basis while dealing with paperwork aboard the vessel.
It really depends on wether you are in-state or out-of-state at which ever school you’re looking at. I think in the end I was somewhere around 100k. I pay it off according to the normal payment schedule, but could have comfortably paid it off within a few years after graduation had I not wanted a house and a few cars haha. It’s possible to be debt free within a few years of graduation if you want. The wages that academy grads are earning these days are VERY worth the time, effort, and monetary burden.
I can not speak for myself as I paid Crawford’s $1100 in 1982. My nephew went to Cal Maritime. He worked construction jobs for two years after high school and saved money. Upon entering Cal Maritime he had a nest egg that he used up. The last two years he was awarded scholarships from ABS, I believe 10k each year. Another 5k or so from other grants/loans for the last two years. Graduating top of his class had benefits. Graduated on a Saturday, flew to Texas on Sunday, Monday he took a physical, and Wednesday he was in indoctrination with one of the big drill ship companies. I remember a phone call I received in August of that year when he told me was debt free.
I went to Cal, in state tuition was around 15-20 k a year depending on cruises. Lived on campus and all that jazz. Student loans the whole way. Around 68 k for 4 years. Now I make 68k for a 2 month hitch. Well worth it.
Ended up with about 30k debt. Paid it off in 5 years after graduation. Totally worth it. In my opinion, still totally worth it if you take full loans on the cost of current academy tuition.
About the same, paid what I could when in school, with a little help from my parents (a grand or so a semester). Not rushing to pay off…relatively low interest, bought a house instead. If you’re aggressive with applying and get good grades you should be able to get a good deal of scholarship money too.
I can’t comment on tuition, since I went to CMA ages ago, but was it worth it? Absolutely! The academy helped shape my career. The debts were paid off years ago, and I couldn’t be happier with where my career has taken me so far.