For people who recently graduated college and haven’t found a job yet, they may be facing a double-whammy of being unemployment and student loan payments they can’t afford.
Many people in this situation have decided to move home and live with mom and dad while they wait for the economy to improve and work a part-time job they never intend to keep. I don’t blame them for getting a job to pay student loans, but do they really think companies are dying to hire someone who spent the last two years waiting tables at Chili’s?
What would you say if I told you that you can defer your federal student loan payments for 27 months, and even have 30% of your Perkins loans forgiven? You could also travel the world on an all expenses paid trip for two years.
All you have to do is sign up for the Peace Corps.
What’s going to make you happy? Would you rather live in your Mom’s basement and work at a restaurant or fight AIDS in Africa?
Who do you want to spend your time with? The same people you went to high school with, or learn Spanish hanging out with a Central American community that you helped learn math and English?
What about potential future employers? Would your resume look better with “Assistant Manager at Target” or “Built a Water Purification System in Aisa”?
What’s going to make you feel better about yourself? Working a crappy job and applying for jobs on Monster.com during commercials of your favorite TV shows, or traveling around the world helping people in need and gaining valuable job and leadership skills in the process?
In the Peace Corps, you can travel the world, meet and help people, and learn new skills. And best of all, it’s free and you get a living stipend. If you don’t have the job you want and you are struggling to pay back your student loans, I can’t think of a better way to spend the next two years of your life.
In case you were wondering, this isn’t an advertisement for the Peace Corps. I was recruiting for my company at a career fair on Tuesday and noticed the Peace Corps booth. If I didn’t love my job, I would be very tempted to sign up myself.
It’s a good financial move to temporarily deal with your student loans. More than that, it’s a great opportunity to do something with your life and stop letting “the economy” or “the wrong major” keep you from starting your adult life.