Free A Lifetime Of Student Debt? Not Likely Essay Example
In her article titled “A Lifetime of Student Debt? Not Likely”, Robin Wilson tackles the issue of higher education costs, particularly the use of student loan debts. Wilson uses various logos and pathos rhetorical strategies to support the claim that the problem of college debt that has often been widely publicized is significantly misguided and that it may not be as bad as people actually think.
There have been many publications talking about how students incur huge loan debts as they get into college and how they are forced to pay these debts for the rest of the life after graduation. Wilson asserts that this is a huge misconception and that the situation is not as bad it is often thought. She is of the opinion that although a significant number of students indeed incur humongous debts that they are forced to clear slowly for a long duration of their lifetime, college education is nevertheless a huge investment. She shows that in spite of the presence of a large number of students facing gargantuan debts, about third of all graduates in American colleges actually leave college with virtually no debt at all (Wilson 258). In addition, 65% of all the students who owe some kind of college debt actually owe around $20,000 dollars that is a relatively small amount. Wilson also argues that one aspect that has contributed to the confusion about the issue of student loans is that undergraduate debts are usually conflated with professional schools and graduate schools whose debts are much higher.
According to Wilson, borrowing for college is a significantly good investment because the interest rates are usually low. She gives an economic perspective whereby debt is asserted as the best way of paying for education because it involves shifting the cost forward until one starts earning more money. In the end, Wilson shows that a majority of college graduates are indeed making things work even if they have debts, This is far from the common arguments that been shoved around regarding the “life sentence” that is usually ascribed to students who chose to take on huge student debts to finance their higher education.
The claim made by the author is that of a fact. Simply put, the author is attempting to define the issue of college debt and what it entails and at the same time trying to diffuse some of the previous misconceptions that have been placed on it. Therefore, the author aims to present the real fact about college debt and the factual aspects about it. As seen previously the claim by the author is that the issue of college debt is not as bad as many purport it to be. Contrary to popular opinion, accruing college debt does not necessarily mean that one is bound to a lifetime of paying debts. The author brilliantly follows through with this claim using sufficient evidence and by the end of the article, every reader is bound to agree with her and adopt a similar position as the one she is putting across.
One of the prevalent rhetorical strategies utilized or employed by the author is that of logos. This is an appeal to factual information. Throughout the essay, the author makes references to several facts and statistics that help to substantiate her argument. She quotes data and figure pertaining to student debts to show that the situation is not really as bad as it is often thought. This strategy is indeed very important as it helps to eliminate any doubts to the reader about the authenticity of her argument. Facts make an argument more solid, and this is why Wilson uses the logic appeal so dominantly. A sample scenario in her article where she makes use of this strategy is when she states that “Of the 65 percent who face debt, the average they owe is around $20,000. That's just below the starting price of a 2009 Ford Escape” (Wilson, 257). Here, Wilson gives a key statistic that obviously has a factual appeal to the reader and then follows it through with a statement to undermine the huge misconception about student debt. A 2009 Ford Escape is a vehicle that many college graduates can afford and therefore repaying a debt of a similar amount to the Ford’s price should not be an issue. This second statement is also a rhetoric strategic (pathos) where she appeals to emotion.
The logic appeal is not only used through statistical figures but also through real-life stories and experiences of people who have been affected by this issue. Throughout the article, the authors present stories of former students who are either struggling to pay their debts, who have either cleared paying their debts or those who are comfortably paying their debts and have no complaints.
The other rhetorical strategy used by the author although not quite intensively as the logic appeal is the pathos, which involves appealing to the reader’s emotion. Here, the author does not use facts but rather tries to appeal emotionally to the audience or the reader. An example is when the author quotes a professor of economics who states that “From an economist's point of view, debt is the very best way to pay for education because you're shifting the cost forward until you'll be earning more money” (Wilson, 260). Obviously, this view may be biased and may not be accurate, but it is meant to make the reader; specifically a potential student adopt the idea that taking a debt may not be so bad. The argument only appeals to the reader emotionally because the student is not actually assured of getting a decent job in the future that will give enough money to repay the loan. Therefore, it is clear to see that to support her claim, the author primarily uses the logos rhetoric appeal and this is what makes her agreement valid and quite convincing.
“A Lifetime of Student Debt? Not Likely” is an article by Robin Wilson that tackles the issue of higher education costs, particularly the use of student loan debts. The author uses the logos and pathos rhetorical strategies to support the claim that the problem of college debt that has often been widely publicized is significantly misguided and that it may not be as bad as people actually think. Throughout the essay, the author presents key facts and evidence including real life testimonials that shed more light into this matter and actually show that the problem is not as bad as initially though and that there is much that can be done to aid students from making bad loan decisions that they will regret later in their lives. The author is quite convincing and by the end of the article, any reader, such as myself is fully convinced and therefore easily adopts a similar position as the author.
Wilson, Robin. "A Lifetime of Student Debt? Not Likely." They Say / I Say: The Moves That Matter in Academic Writing. New York: W.W. Norton &, 2010. 256-72. Print.
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