October 05, 2007

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day


There seems to be a misconception out there that HP'ers are uneducated renting losers. We already found out that most of you are making some serious bucks, and mainly in IT and professional jobs.

So let's finish it off - what's your level of education, university, major(s) and degree(s)?

(Note - if you're not some doctorate of this and masters of that, you're fine by me - I'm just curious as to the level of brainiac we have here. Maybe I should ask level of student debt too!)

DOPES! we know though is an ASU grad at best for sure (ok, ASU grads, flame away, but ya gotta admit that's a party school)

188 comments:

westwest888 said...

MS - Virginia Tech
BS - Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) Troy, NY

I'm a wiz at computer science and finance.

I rent a $750k (peak bubble) townhouse for $463 a month with roommates. The builder is trying to hock one that he held and rented for two years at $699k asking. NO TAKERS, NO VISITORS, EMPTY OPEN HOUSES every Sunday. waaaaaaa. I built million dollar houses and nobody wants them because I priced them at $963k in 2005.

Sixpercenter said...

BS Finance, magna cum laude

Joel said...

Master's and Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Brigham Young University.

Anonymous said...

IT consultant. And bought a house last week in a non-bubble area. No longer a rental loser.

Anonymous said...

Rent an awesome 1 bed + loft apartment in west los angeles. Nobody ever walks through the door without a "holy sh*t, nice place!"

Graduated from UCLA with a bachelors in mechanical engineering, taught myself how to program, now I write 3D engines for video games.

I make $115k a year, have over $100k invested, not including the 401k which is well above $100k as well. Zero debt, zero problems.

Realized that the market was overvalued in 2002, so I'll sit it out and pay 2000 prices in a few years.

Man_from_NY said...

AAS Optical technology
and
Biotechnology

Working as a Biomedical equipment technician

Anonymous said...

I'm Sorry Keith but I am a College Dropout and yet I realized that there was a bubble in 2003 while the "experts" said ohhh no it is based on sound fundamentals.BTW I do not make serious bucks. Again I apologize to all as I am also a bitter renter in Massachusetts and drive a 15 year old car. I also know unlike other Americans that past tense of the verb "see" is Saw not I seen. I must be very smart indeed

Mr Jayman Methuen Ma

Anonymous said...

My Bio:
44 Y/o
BS in Liberal Arts (cheezy I know, it was the 80's!)


Best Education of all : losing my first home in the 80's Texas Oil RE bust, which lasted for YEARS & complete neighborhoods went Foreclosure. Thank God we were young & could recover over time

Yes, HPers, I sold here in 2006 & put away a nice chunk of change. If I were losing a house now, I don't think we could ever recover/retire.

I've been scared as hell the last 2 years or so until we sold our current home.
Most "kids" on these blogs that doubt this crash (haven't lived long enough to see one!!) are going to learn this the hard way as I did years ago...

Anonymous said...

BS-Microbiology PITT

MS-Biochemistry Duq. U

JD-Intellectual Prop. GMU

Profession - Patent Attorney

Anonymous said...

Where's the nozzle to blow him up?

David in JAX said...

Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Science Electrical Engineering from a well known major private university in the U.S. Triple majored in Biology, Neuroscience and Electrical Engineering and minored in Chemistry. Did it in 4-1/2 years. Was going to go to graduate school in bio-engineering (a hot topic back then), but decided to start a new company with a friend with this new thing called "the internet".

So I hit the HP trifecta. Smart, educated, and make good money. I also have a hot wife which is a bonus.

David in JAX said...

I know the point of this thread is to show the trolls that HPers are not what they make us out to be. However, I do want to say that the two smartest and most successful people I know never went to college. Both fit the HP profile though and would never buy into any bubble or throw their money away on a sure loser (like the recent RE market).

Anonymous said...

Both me and wifey have MSCS. I have an MBA on top of that. Combined W2 income of around 20K per month. Our investment portfolio is entirely outside US growing at anywhere between 10% and 50% a year. We believe in charging interest for lending our money and not in paying interest (ZERO debt). So we rent at around 1K a month and save the rest.

keith said...

Agree - some of the dumbest people I know are college graduates (mainly ASU) so college does not make you smart

That said, if you're a masters of microbiology with a minor in math, you're pretty damn smart by me

Bottom line is that I think most HP'ers were smart enough to have sold at the peak and rented, smart enough to have decent jobs, smart enough to not be swimming in debt, and smart enough to understand the issues that face America (and the world)

DOPES!, on the other hand, is just a dumb guy (or gal)

keith said...

Oh, Poly Sci, U. of Michigan

Go Blue.

Big D said...

IT Director - $130k/year
no debt
no car payments
$950 - 3 bedroom
leaving my well paid job to start my own business

High School drop out
1 year college
no college debt

Anonymous said...

PhD in Physics. University professor.

John said...

B.S. in Electrical

Waited out the peak and bought a house last month. With the dollar depreciating and house prices stabilizing here in the Boston suburbs, I bought a house below my means out of necessity. Was renting a townhouse for $1500 a month, bought a house couple of towns away for a payment of $2000 a month with 20% down and 30 yr fixed unlike some of my friends who spent over $500K during the peak with ARMs for houses far away in the suburbs.

Anonymous said...

Brain Surgeon. I rent a $50 million dollar beach front estate with ten staff, including a cook for $200 a month. I read HP several times an hour, and I'm stocking up on guns and gold. Once this thing plays out, I'll swoop in and buy up several city blocks of prime real estate.

Anonymous said...

BA Biology , currently making 60K
working in IT.

Anonymous said...

BS in mechanical engineering
MS in astronautical engineering
(yes, that's rocket science)

I rent a 4 beedroom house on 2 acres in Loudoun County VA for 1600 a month. The equivelent house easily sells (or not) for 600K. I would never think of buying in this market. Additionally, I told him if he increased my rent this year, I'd leave. He agreed not to raise my rent because of downward pressure in the housing market.

Anonymous said...

full ride - div I volleyball paid for my education. The navy paid for the rest.

I am a lowly renter as I sold my place in 2005. Would love to afford a home here in hawaii but we have a bubble which is still fizzing out air , so i'm waiting and saving.

baddriver said...

BS and MS of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Looking back I shoulda done finance.

Roccman said...

BLA, Univ. AZ

D. said...

B.Sc. Mathematics-economics, CFA

Anonymous said...

BS Finance, summa
MS Applied Econ

I'm a long-time lurker, seldom poster.

Work in risk dept at very large bank for the last couple of years. Realized disconnect in house prices back in 2003. At that time, I was a couple of years out of grad school and chose not to buy a place. Everyone (friends, family, and co-workers) thought I was nuts. Now, sweet, sweet vindication.

Keep plowing money into into a diversified ETF, stock, and 401(k) portfolios.

I'm not a communist! I will buy a place when I see a bargain or when prices come back in line.

Keep up the good work Keith!

Anonymous said...

BSEE, MSc University of Toronto.

I relocated and started a new position in mid 06 but decided not to buy; in large part due to reading HP. The home I was looking at has now dropped from 400K to 300K (I still don’t want it). Instead I bought CFC and CTX PUT options with my cash flow after tips from this board and a little analysis. The October CFC puts will yield about 100K after taxes and I have some Jan08 CTX and some Jan09 left to go. That’s a 200K delta. If I'm part of the Brown Shirt Crowd then well....I love Brown Shirts.

Funny thing is of all the people who should have been doing what HP'ers have been doing it's Realtors right? They should have had an early insight into what kind of paper was being written and how the system was being gammed. Did they think about a hedge? No, they bought new Lexus's and investment condos. A true moronathon.

PS: I was initially on the fence about buying the PUTs until I started reading Greg Swann's Blogg. It occurred to me that not only were the financials of the real estate industry headed for deep trouble but the industry as a whole was comprised of complete f*&^ng idiots. So thanks Greg! How’s that Phoenix real estate thing working out for you?

atticuswfu said...

BA Penn State
JD Wake Forest

Attorney/Happy Renter

Anonymous said...

NO COLLEGE, MAKE 85K SITTING ON MY ASS ALL DAY PRETENDING TO WRITE SOFTWARE FOR A COMPANY TOO DUMB TO NOTICE. GO HOME FOR 2 HOUR LUNCH EVERY DAY - I RENT A HOUSE ABOUT 10 MIN FROM WORK FOR 1950/MONTH IN DC AREA WITH MY GF WHO I HATE. I WANT TO MOVE SOMEWHERE CHEAPER SO I CAN LIVE ALONE. I ALSO HATE COMPUTERS SO I'D LIKE TO CHANGE CAREERS.

HOW ABOUT THIS QUESTION (AND ANSWER HONESTLY): HOW MANY OF YOU REALLY NEEDED TO LEARN WHAT YOU LEARNED IN COLLEGE TO DO WHAT YOU DO NOW?

TO ME COLLEGE HAS BECOME VALUABLE ONLY BECAUSE EVERYONE HAS DRANK THE KOOLAID. NOW WE NEED MASTERS DEGREES TO WIPE PEOPLES ASSES. NICE JOB AMERICA, YOUR KIDS ARE GOING TO BE 100K IN DEBT WHEN THEY GET OUT OF COLLEGE AND EARN THAT 35K SO THEY CAN BUY THAT 600K HOUSE.....

Anonymous said...

St Johns College, Santa Fe

I am female.

I run a private equity fund specializing in the es, the s&p e - mini.

I own my 80 acres in WNC near Asheville

I have 0 debts, 250 kyocera 186 w pv panels in grid-tie configuration.

40 head of cattle
5 acres of rapeseed for biodiesel

I also have about $ 100 k face value of junk silver coins

about 6500 books

no problems

Anonymous said...

J.D. University of Akron, but the law really has been a side gig. Renovated two houses in Buffalo sold the last one September 18th for 2.5 times my purchase price, which is pretty good for Buffalo.

Now, I think I will am going to certify myself with the American Bankrutpcy Institute and return to full time practice.

Anonymous said...

Ph.D. Psychology

b said...

no college.
no job.

gobs of money.
a few houses here & there.
a happy marriage with 4 children.
good friends.
parents live & move with us.

time to give back to those less fortunate.

Anonymous said...

Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture
The Ohio State University

Anonymous said...

Sometime poster gone anon. love the gonzo style, Keith. Hunter Thomson would be proud.

Bachelor of Science in Economics from University of Pennsylvania
(Wharton School)

Concentrations in public policy and finance.

My lifestyle as a renter (and former homeowner) is very nice. Interest on housing profits pay for rent.

pat said...

HS diploma- thats it.A good deal of common sense, you do not need a college degree to figure out that this economy is going down the toilet
75k a year self employed

Anonymous said...

High School drop-out, I'm the son of East European immigrants.
Own my home in downtown Phoenix free and clear since '93, bought it in '75.
Single parent; I put my two kids through two years of Community College and two years at State University with no debt, both got their Bachelors degrees.
I have only $250,000 in other assets; 95% cash in FDIC insured accounts, 5% in PM, but i have a small pension that covers my basic living costs.
I did it by working a non-union factory job for 26 years, never buying anything major new and rejecting consumerism.
Those kinds of factory jobs don't exist in the U.S. of A. any longer; the job I used to do is in Mexico now and i hear it's going to Malaysia soon.

cobra2411 said...

Doctorate of business administration.

Anonymous said...

BSEE U Texas
MSEE U Texas

Bought 2000 sqft house on 1 acre in austin,TX during tech slump. Mortgage (fixed) = 1.5x salary. Wife+kid is the major expense.

TulipBoy said...

MBA University of Alberta
BA University of Alberta

Human Resources Manager

Student Debt = $0

Also, I eat my soup with a fork.

Anonymous said...

AST (Electronics) from a school you never heard of.

I don't rent. I sold my first house for 3x my investment and bought 16 acres for far less than what some folks have paid for 1br condos.

Batman said...

PhD Engineering, Professor

Anonymous said...

BS. Chem. Eng, Cornell University
Ph.D., Nuclear Science & Engineering, Cornell University

Yearly Salary+Bonus ~$125-130K

Bought 4 Bedroom Colonial in central NJ in 2001 for $280K, 5% down +15% 2nd+80% primary, paid off the 15% 2nd in 1 year.

House probably peaked at $520K, could get $400K in a fire-sale, owe about $207K. Never was quite that frothy in this area.

re-fied into a lower-rate 30-year fixed primary mortgage 1 year after I bought it, going from 7.125% to 6.25%. Wanted to do it again a year later to get 5.375%, but at the time we thought that we were going to move, so didn't get to capture that lower rate.

Captain Ned said...

BA Economics
Colgate University 1985
State financial regulator

Homeowner with less than $100K owed on the first and a $10M HELOC that goes down about $1k/month, as it's time for a new roof.

Anonymous said...

JD from a top 20 Law school.
Deputy GC of major financial institution
Sold a bubblicious condo in hoboken at the top and rent a $800,000 apartment for 3200/month.

Anonymous said...

BS - Chemistry/Applied Math

Worked in both biopharmaceutical and IT-related industries, peak salary, ~$95K/yr plus bonus.

I will be a patent attorney in a few years. Just got my LSATs back, 176, so hopefully that'll get me a full ride out there (i.e. Vandy/Illinois and if really lucky, Univ of Chicago [the dream program]).

My genuine fear... no real R&D work goes on in America anymore. It's mostly a hybrid of sales and consulting which is why even BS holders in the sciences are effectively *overqualified* for the typical jobs out there and of course, specialists {ones with specialized BS or MS/PhDs) get down/rightsized quicker than let's say a post-to-presales engineer. Plus, well oiled companies like Google/Yahoo/eBay do not ad (pun intended) to the value chain, sorry to burst anyone's bubble there.

Mammoth said...

BS in Mechanical Engineering
Minor in Russian Language
3.64 GPA

Big fvcking deal!

Worked as a printer for ~12 years after graduating from high school, then decided to quit breathing ink mist & paper dust and went college at age 29. Paid my way by getting student loans and working part-time while bashing my head against the wall for a number of years and was finally awarded a sheepskin for all the hard work & sacrifice.

So what?!?

Having a college degree MIGHT enable a person to get a decent-paying job, but it does not mean that this person is smarter than someone without a sheepskin!

During my career working as a manufacturing engineer I have worked with many individuals – assemblers, technicians, etc. who are far more clever and quick-thinking than myself.

These people do not have degrees for a variety of reasons – maybe they didn’t believe in their own ability, maybe for financial reasons, or maybe because they just had no interest in continuing their education after high school.

If you assume that your college degree makes you better than somebody without one, you are just putting yourself up on a pedestal and making a fool out of yourself.

If you want to think that you are better than everybody else, don’t do it by putting down the people who have less than what you have.

Do it by working to make this world a better place by giving up your greed, waste and overconsumption, and by spreading the word.

-Mammoth

Anonymous said...

bsba georgetown

no debt
own home
$500K net worth
run multiple investment funds

geeski said...

BA(s) - University of Illinois - Urbana

Mathematics
Computer Science
German (for fun)

Household income over 200K.

Have LLC for property holdings.

Have 4 homes, 3 rented with positive cash flow. We max out our tax writeoffs of 25K per person, since we're not married, no joint returns. Who knew being gay would have such great tax benefits.

Effective tax rate of 5% for me, 4% for my partner.

Oh, and no debt.

We only use Amex, and Platinum at that, because of all the companion travel benefits.

john said...

MBA
MS Engineering
BS Mech. Engineering
BS Math

Anonymous said...

..

BS in Chemistry, Marshall University.

MS in Chemistry, University of South Florida.

I do Mass Spectroscopy for a living.

A currently rent, although I could buy a nice home any time I want....

Anonymous said...

Dave in Maine (bubble success story)

Education: 1yr ChemE (didn't like it), switched to CE (loved it!), took an engineering job after my 3rd year (needed $$$ bad), never formally finished my degree. I worked 23 years as an CS/EE in the Semiconductor industry. I avoided 31 layoffs during those years while yearning for a better quality of life and far more job security. I had a net worth of about $220K at 45 years old as I left my job.

I saw the housing bubble "opportunity" unfold in early 2002. I accumulated a few abutting land parcels in a great location, got them through subdivision approval and quit my $75K/yr job (btw, that's a great salary in ME) to became a full time land developer. It took leveraging everything I had to pull this off. I knew the bubble would be temporary and knew I would have to move fast in order to succeed.

I'm now debt free, have a few years of survival cash in the bank, an untouched 401k from the old job, a home and camp in ME, a house in AZ (currently rented), $1.4M (market asking price before realty fees/taxes) of premium water/mountain view hill side house lots for sale and more prime land (up to 70 more lots) to be developed in a few years (if housing recovers). Sales have slowed significantly in my market segment since early 2006, but my land holdings are debt free and property taxes are about 1% of full market value. The margin on my average view lot is 70%.

I think I'm pretty well positioned, though way too heavy in RE. But, if I sell one lot per year, the profit after tax is equivalent to about 2 years of my old salary after taxes. I budget like I still work my old job, so I'm not living like a rock star. I'll never regret taking the big risk; my quality of life is an incredible improvement from what it was just 5 years ago.

Mammoth said...

Anon 2:01 PM asked,
“HOW ABOUT THIS QUESTION (AND ANSWER HONESTLY): HOW MANY OF YOU REALLY NEEDED TO LEARN WHAT YOU LEARNED IN COLLEGE TO DO WHAT YOU DO NOW?”
----------------------------------
Good thought-provoking question!

In college I learned the methodology of problem-solving, which has served me very well both in my career AND in my personal life.

The rigors of college also teaches one DISCIPLINE!

However, the other 95% of what was taught in college was just like broken glass spread on a sidewalk, which one has to wade through in order to pick up the degree once the finish line is reached.

Anonymous said...

Here is a better question. How many of you college grads believe that this country was founded on the "free trade" dogmas of Adam Smith?

And, for whom did Adam Smith work when he penned his Wealth of Nations?

Bob Reno said...

BS - Communications, Ball State

Sold my house in Sept 06, just before things starting heading south here in Michigan. (Okay, when it REALLY started heading south and people actually started noticing that houses weren't selling.) Two of my old neighbors are now in foreclosure for much less than I sold for.
Currently renting a nearly new 4 bdrm home (that the owner couldn't sell) for about 2/3rds of what it would cost me to buy.
Leaving Michigan soon for greener pastures.

Happy Homedebtor said...

BS - Comp Sci
BS - Info Sys Mgmt
MS - Tech Mgmt (in progress)
MBA (in progress)

All from U. Maryland.

Combined income of $158K, wife's going to be starting pharmacy school (is that what it's called?) next year while she continues to work.

House and cars are the only debts not at 0%, and we're paying those as they come due. Why shell out $$ when you can use others' interest free and make money on yours in the interim?

eurogringo said...

Masters equivalent from a german university. just started for a major german reinsurance company.
renting...but then again housing prices here arent crazy.

Anonymous said...

44 years old
150k salary


BS Computer Science
B. A Political Science
M.B.A Finance & Electronic Commerece 3.7/4.0
Masters of Information Technology Management 4.0/4.0

Illinois Institue Of Technology


Small school loan
Paid off apartment in Europe - buid in 2003
200k 401K
50 k Cash
Both kids in private High Schools
No house yet. waiting for the blood to fill the streets first.

Anonymous said...

Keith,

Don't you know everyone online is rich, smart and beautiful? On HP everyone makes $250K a year. Yet these are the same people that complain about expensive milk. A little suspicious donthca think?

That being said here is my story:

I have a BA in History with a minor in PoliSci from a top tier liberal arts college in New England. I really majored in women and beer, but got serious enough at exam time to graduate with a honors. I went to law school, but dropped out after 1 semester as it bored the shit out of me and realized the real money was in the .com world seeing as how it was 1997. I joined a startup in "Internet Marketing" about as bullshit a job as you could have, but it paid $65K a year. Not bad for a starting salary. My college roommate was working there and he hooked me up. Neither one of us knew what the hell we were doing, but who cared, it was 1997, anytying with a .com after its name was gold.

I walked away with about $195,000 in stock option money even with the collapse in 2001. Could have had twice that much but I didn't sell in time. I took the money and bought real estate in California and you guessed it Phoenix in 2002. I asked a friend from college who at the time was working at an IB what I should do with the money he said, real estate. I said OK. I had no clue about investing,figured he did, he was right. I bought him lots of drinks as a thank you.

Between 2002 and 2006, bought and sold a whole bunch more and made over $1.5M after all taxes, expenses, etc. I knew it was time to get out in 2006 and did. I actually lost money on the last property I sold. That money is now invested in a fairly conservative portfolio, dividend yielding blue chips and bonds. It is my don't touch it for 25 years money.

My real job was now and for the past 3 years has been software consulting. I now work for myself as an independent contractor and charge between $85 and $100 an hour. I work only when I want and take weeks or months off in between projects. For 2007 I figure I should gross about $150K give or take from my "job", ie excluding investment income. Last year I made $180K. It's not Wall St money but I'm content for now.

I'm in my early 30s and I owe $0. I have no mortgage, no car loans, no student loans, nothing, zip nada. I save about 25% of my income. I could save more I suppose but I like expensive things. I buy overpriced designer clothes, I eat out every nightt (I hate to cook) and live life well. Plus I donate to many charities, especially animal related ones and the women I date are so damned demanding, they are quite an expense, but again, wtf worth it.

I rent a really cool renovated home built in 1877 in one of the most expensive parts of town,would cost $1M+ to buy. I drive an $80K sports car which I paid for in cash.

I'd say life is pretty good overall. Then I get on this blog and laughingly read about how awful the world is. Or how awful America is. How the country is in the toilet. There is no other country in the world where I could have accomplished what I did at my age and I refuse to buy into the negative doom and gloom bullshit you people talk about.

And as far as college goes. Nothing I learned in class helped me in my career, other than the ability to think, write, etc that I developled while learning about Cicero and Co. What did help me was the people I met. I have never sent a resume to anyone. Every job/contract I've had has been through someone I know. And that chain goes back to my freshman year.

PS: ASU is great for the ladies. Granted it is a joke school academically, but if easier/hotter/drunker 19 year olds exist I have yet to meet them. Go Devils!!

Anonymous said...

B.A., Business, J.D., passed the California bar, first try.
Work as in attorney in the Caifornia housing sector (low income housing)

- home in Orange County, CA is almost paid off
- live debt free (besides small home mortgage)
- will pay for my 3 kids' college in cash
- I am a "Cash Only" customer
- Believes that in the end those with the most toys do not finish first; it's the people who made a difference in someone's life.
- Ron Paul Rocks!

Anonymous said...

Me:
BSEE
JD
patent attorney

westwood said...

PhD, Neuroscience
BSc, Biochemistry
Both from furr'n universities.

Tanker said...

BS FInance and Economics with a minor in Political Economy. Currently MBA student.

Anonymous said...

Retired mathematician/computer engineer, 1967 Temple U., Mathematics...then read Murray Rothbard, Ludwig von Mises, etc., and was an early, founding member of Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania, 1972-1973.

sammy said...

BS Chemical Engineering, MBA... Like to lurk here a lot but don't post often.

Anonymous said...

Bachelor of Science in Industrial Chemistry.

banshee said...

Marquette University
BS Electrical Engineering

"Six months ago, I couldn't speel enjineer. Now I are one"

:^)

MrBill said...

B.S. electrical engineering
a few engineering grad classes
a few MBA classes

Anonymous said...

BBA James Madison Univ
MS Johns Hopkins Univ

Anonymous said...

I finished High School.

I paid off my mortgage, vehicles, and loans and am completely debt free.

Job.. Western Hemisphere Director for an international conglomerate. Responsible for 3.5/Billion P&L (Yes I said billion)

Energy Division.

1560 Employees>

I'm over HR, Inventory, Treasury, Sales, Fleet, Leases, Real Estate Purchases and North American Expansion.

Salary/Bonus/Stock Options 305K+ yearly.

I went to the school of hard knocks but would wager I could run circles around most MBA's.

Education is not a degree from a university, it is having the ability find information you need to accomplish your goal.

While all of you are worried about the housing bubble, I am confronting how to gather and transmit enough energy to fuel your ever increasing demand.

Love the site.

Anonymous said...

BA - Cornell, American Studies
MA - USC (So. California, not South Carolina), Journalism

Anonymous said...

BA, Vanderbilt
MS, PhD Wisconsin

Gov. contractor in DC area
Rent is 11% of two-person income.
Never owned property.

Anonymous said...

JD / MBA - Northern Virgina

DB said...

BA: UC Santa Barbara - College of Creative Studies with an emphasis in Fine Art. Studied on a full merit based scholarship.

Anonymous said...

.


B.S. from SHIT


Sam

Houston

Institute

technology




.

Anonymous said...

HOW ABOUT THIS QUESTION (AND ANSWER HONESTLY): HOW MANY OF YOU REALLY NEEDED TO LEARN WHAT YOU LEARNED IN COLLEGE TO DO WHAT YOU DO NOW?

Ah... to be young and idealistic again.

Back when I graduated from engineering, I too was confused as to why I worked so hard for a degree to be unemployed.

And when I did get a job, it was doing mindless QA work for a software development company.

Man... I still think back to those days. I kept asking myself why I struggled in those Solid State Physics courses in University, when I just ended up sitting in the basement after midnight pressing keys on a keyboard to make sure the test program was running.

When I was growing up - they promised that we would be building habitats on the moon or mars. Just curious... what did they promise you?

Don't worry kid... give it a few more years and they'll break you too. You'll settle down into your nice guilded cage.

You won't even notice the bars... honest.

IB

Anonymous said...

ASU grad, B.S.; sorry I missed out on the parties, I paid for my education, had to work nights. I've been in information technology for quite some time; very well paid, but I live in Los Angeles, so I prefer to rent rather than buy an overpriced crackhouse.

Anonymous said...

.



Barely high school diploma

2 yrs j c

Started a small excavating compny in So. Cal

Made $240k last year

Taxed to death




.

Anonymous said...

BA Liberal Arts Chicago

Loan Officer for a Bank

Yes, when asked if I own I say no. Somewhat of a dichotomy in years past but no longer. On a net basis I need 1400 a month and that includes hookers and blow. Can't wait for some price corrections. Life is good. Now if only those puts on Countrywide could get in the money.

Northern Virginian said...

BA International Studies/Mandarin Chinese
MA International Development/Middle East Studies

I also speak Farsi and Arabic

borkafatty said...

Town Government Hack...Engineer (computers), 20 years plus...And Run a cleaning business.evenings...Degree in civil Engineering.

Anonymous said...

33 years old

BA in econ/finance

industry: consulting

income about $140K, wife doesn't work, doesn't have to, if she did, we'd be in the $200K a year zone but I prefer her to stay home with our 2 kids, that is worth 10 times the money she could earn

about $200K in various 401k, IRAs invested in stocks mainly

$125K in money markets/CDs

owned, sold at the peak, now rent, hope to buy again next year if prices fall enough for my liking

no debt to speak of other than wife's student loans which were refinanced at 2.9% and we'll pay off over 20 years, which given inflation running at 2-3 times 2.9% is a great deal

Anonymous said...

PH.D Garbage Collector


Own 2 million dollar home.

Salary: 34k a year

Anonymous said...

MBA Rice Univ Houston, TX

Daphne64 said...

MA in Math from University of Kansas.
BS in Math from University of Kansas.
I got into Caltech, but had to transfer out my sophomore year.

Working as an actuary.

Anonymous said...

My real job was now and for the past 3 years has been software consulting. I now work for myself as an independent contractor and charge between $85 and $100 an hour. I work only when I want and take weeks or months off in between projects. For 2007 I figure I should gross about $150K give or take from my "job", ie excluding investment income. Last year I made $180K. It's not Wall St money but I'm content for now.
===============================
Your real job is "jerking off", and I am sure youre an expert.

resisting husband said...

29 y/o male

BS - Psychology
MS - Criminology
JD in progress...taking the bar in August.

50k/yr salary (not bad for a part time student), student wife (no income..grrr)

Cars are paid for, renting for 850/mo in a town that was #7 on that Moody's "top 100 towns to drop" list Keith posted a few weeks ago.

Going to remain a bitter renter for at least 3 years, while my wife and i, who will both start our "official" careers within the year, stack up tons of worthless american dollars and buy a house in '10 or '11. I dont think i can hold off the nesting any longer than that.

Oh, and to top it all off, I have an enormous cock.

bryce in canada (Vncvr & Clgry bubbls) said...

Bachelor of Arts - English
&
Bachelor of Laws (that would be a Juris Doctor in USA).

mensajd said...

JD/MBA
BA Pure Math

EIT Certificate
USPTO Registration

Per Zillow, I just lost $300k in equity in the last 30 days! Woot!

Anonymous said...

MS, PhD, U of Michigan,
MBA, UCLA Anderson School.

Anonymous said...

B.S. - Geology
M.S. - Geology

I'm a geologist - duh. (oil & gas explorationist)

Anonymous said...

Ph.D. Aerospace Engineering. Senior manager engineering firm, 230-250k (incl. bonus and stock grants).

Purchased a new house in 2006(!) despite being an avid reader of this blog. However, this is Houston - not a characteristic bubble market despite massive foreclosures in the sub 150k range.

TexStock

FC John said...

BS Electrical Engineering (EE)
MS EE
MBA

Rent for $550 in a college town

Anonymous said...

Master's in computer science, bachelor's in music.

Wife also has a master's and is a licensed mental health professional.

Work a corporate job and own my own company; wife is a department director.

We "own" now but rented for 15 months.

Renting makes good financial sense for most people.

Our landlord while we rented was a would-be flipper who could not sell his home. He decided to put it back on the market when we were occupants. We bailed on him and are much happier making a mortgage payment. We have never looked at houses as trading instruments or "investments".

There are other, far easier ways to make money out of money.

dagan68 said...

BA Stanford University MAGNA CUM LAUDE

MA - HISTORY - University of Oklahoma SUMMA CUM LAUDE

MD - University of Oklahoma AOA

Medical Residency - University of Texas Southwestern Medical CENTER - PARKLAND MEMORIAL HOSPITAL - DALLAS

Anonymous said...

M.Ed - Uiverdity of MN - work in non-profit fundraising. Currently renting 1/2 of $800,000 townhouse for $1,600/mo.

Sam said...

IT Manager, Yearly Salary 110K
Masters in Manufacturing Systems, Managing IT supply chain of fortune 500 company. Renting a nice home for 1500.00 when the mortgage could be $3300.00.

Anonymous said...

M.D. from Estonia, a regular reader of your blog. For me, reading your blog is like a time machine to show the future. (We have just got our first 5-10% discounts here. The time for incentives is over by now.)

Anonymous said...

Mr. patent attourney with 100,000 in student loan debt, cant i do your job with a 38 cent stamp and an envelope......

mike said...

28, bachelors of computer science
250k house bought in 2005. got a deal, today zillow is putting it at 327. it's high but it's not too crazy, i slid under the bubble. nw chicago burbs. no school debt. pile of silver. RON PAUL '08.

Anonymous said...

From Tucson, Attorney, married to another attorney - we're renting until prices drop!

Anonymous said...

BA in Poli Sci from Bishop's University (small liberal arts college in eastern Canada).

professional, rent a home somewhere in the EU.

i think it is crass to talk about how much you earn or are worth (and that is not sour grapes). i think the best comment on this thread is the attorney in Orange county who says the guy who helps others the most wins.

Anonymous said...

I am a Mech Eng, oil industry consultant , GREAT income, homeowner, bubble watcher and am studying economics in all my spare time. I bought in 1998 (200K) in Sacramento area. In 2005 we had house appraised (810K). I told my wife the world had gone crazy - we should sell house, buy gold and guns and move to Canada. (Needless to say she said "no, we are going to build a big pool and renovate the apartment above garage" hahaha I still think I was right !!

Anonymous said...

Master and PhD in physics. Earning not over 100k, but enough. Renting an appartment.

Conversekidz said...

BA in Philosophy (got out of school 3 years ago)

Currently working for a private equity/working capital company.

Have 13k in debt on one credit card (low rate, mainly school stuff) and a car loan around 37k (figured if I can't buy a house where I live, I might as well have the car I want, it makes me happy)

Rent an apartment for 1000 a month, and should have the credit card payed off by January 2008.

After the credit card is paid off, I plan on investing and renting for as long as humanily possible...or at least until housing gets back to an affordable level.

Anonymous said...

PhD in Chem. Engineering

Sold home in Summer 05, now rent a nice home on the hill in La Jolla with a beautiful view of the ocean and Mission Bay for LESS than the mortgage payment on a crack house in the barrios.

No debts.

Bill in AZ said...

"anonymous" said:

I'd say life is pretty good overall. Then I get on this blog and laughingly read about how awful the world is. Or how awful America is. How the country is in the toilet. There is no other country in the world where I could have accomplished what I did at my age and I refuse to buy into the negative doom and gloom bullshit you people talk about.


Lots of people are rolling in it, hotshot. That's what happens in a fractional reserve boom-bust cycle. Maybe one day you'll understand it if you ever took the time to figure it out; though I doubt it, since you're too busy kissing your own ass. Here are some minor clues for you, though, from a familiar source:


I joined a startup in "Internet Marketing" about as bullshit a job as you could have, but it paid $65K a year. Not bad for a starting salary. My college roommate was working there and he hooked me up. Neither one of us knew what the hell we were doing, but who cared, it was 1997, anytying with a .com after its name was gold.

I walked away with about $195,000 in stock option money even with the collapse in 2001. Could have had twice that much but I didn't sell in time. I took the money and bought real estate in California and you guessed it Phoenix in 2002. I asked a friend from college who at the time was working at an IB what I should do with the money he said, real estate. I said OK. I had no clue about investing

My real job was now and for the past 3 years has been software consulting. I now work for myself as an independent contractor and charge between $85 and $100 an hour. I work only when I want and take weeks or months off in between projects. For 2007 I figure I should gross about $150K give or take from my "job", ie excluding investment income. Last year I made $180K. It's not Wall St money but I'm content for now.


So you're doing well; good for you. I'm glad if anyone does well. But you are missing the point. The point is that as long as the system is manipulated by the Fed and they are allowed to artificially provoke economic expansion and counterfeit money, there will be these hyper expansions followed by hyper contractions. Situations like yours where people "get rich" and don't even know how. Followed by situations where people "go broke" and don't know how. The only thing that stays consistent during this entire process is monetary inflation, essentially: stealing from citizens (the producers). In the end, 95% of the population is worse off.

In the meantime we get to listen to the ignorant and the selfish laughing at those that try to help.

Btw, I am BS in CS. Game programmer for Playstation & Xbox.

JimAtLaw said...

Undergrad: UC Santa Cruz, Econ
Grad: JD, Harvard Law School

Occupation: Intellectual property/technology transactions lawyer. Went back to law school after a decade in the IT industry, first as an engineer and then in business development and corporate relationship management. Still angling for a way back to the beach...

Anonymous said...

California CPA. Sold my house in 2006 and now renting until prices hit the bottom and then I buy again. Great life hear on the beach.

ApleAnee said...

I am sincerely hoping that me and the little blogger guy at Reuters aren't the only ones in the entire f***ng world that finds it strange that our government forgot to count the school teachers for August and we lost 4,000 jobs right before the Bernanke rate cut. Voila, someone magically found those 85,000 school teachers hiding under their desks last week. Shame on those teachers.

Nothing that gets discussed here or on CNBC or Bloomberg or anywhere else means squat if the numbers that you are basing your arguments and your livlihoods on are bogus (see lying). I day trade and I count on reports such as the non farm payroll to help me figure out what I need to do. Not in 30 days, not in 60 days but RIGHT NOW. I don't believe a goddamn word about today's job report because they lied their asses off about the August report.

I think Dopes may come out smelling like a rose because his guessing is really no different than our basing our money making endeavors on bogus reports.

Apparently no one outside the U.S. believes the government's reports either, the GREAT JOBS REPORT did nothing to stop the slide of the dollar today. Still slip sliding away. They know we are just liars and tricksters. They don't bother to pay any attention to us anymore. We have become irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

Network Engineer

AS - CIS-Network Specialist
Certifications:
CCNA - Cisco Certified Network Associate
CCSA - Check Point Certified Security Administrator
CCSE - Check Point Certified Security Expert
A+ & Network+ (cheesy I know)

Young, live in central Florida (bubble capitol of the world) rent a cheap house - next month I am moving into a different house for $100 less a month that will be 300 square feet bigger and include a pool (housing rental market is a steal here).

Going back to school for BS mid-semester this year.

Anonymous said...

BA Theatre University of Colorado

As part of my current job, I present continuing legal education classes on a highly specialized area of commercial law to attorneys.

Anonymous said...

BFA Virginia Commonwealth University
MFA Boston University

3200 Sq.Ft. 3 floor townhouse in metro DC, bought in 2003. Have funds in my MM Savings account to pay off the note today - if I wanted.

Sold my house in Hawaii at a nice markup 2 years ago.

Debt free, no loans, no credit card balances, zilch - nada - nothing.

- Snowden

Anonymous said...

Anonymous October 05, 2007 1:15 PM said...
"Brain Surgeon. I rent a $50 million dollar beach front estate with ten staff, including a cook for $200 a month. I read HP several times an hour, and I'm stocking up on guns and gold. Once this thing plays out, I'll swoop in and buy up several city blocks of prime real estate."

I might suggest that BELIEVING you are a brain surgeon is not enough. It sounds like you have already done serious damage by attempting brain surgery on yourself.

Frank@NeverColdCall.com said...

Look, many people in this world are insecure and have an inferiority complex and they compensate for it by claiming superiority over anyone they can find; in the case of FB's, they claim superiority over renters because they can't find anyone else to rag on.

In any case, here's my profile:

- No degree; I quit college after one year. No student loan debt. No debt at all for that matter.

- I am a published author. Most of my income is from paid speaking, sales of online products, executive development/coaching, and corporate consulting gigs (ironic because my clients are mostly MBAs).

- I rent a house for $3,500/month (worth $1.2M at the peak, around $800k now). I would love to buy asap but here in CA we have a long way down to the bottom. Many people in my line of work and income level are also renting because 1) they are smart enough to wait for the bottom and 2) they don't care what anyone else things about whether or not they rent.

Anonymous said...

BSEE MTU
MSEE MTU

Anonymous said...

Renter with BS Business and a BS English Lit/Journalism, a few IT certs, $0 student loan debt, $0 other debt. This took restraint as I LOVE to go to school.

Like the other posters, very little of what I got As in at college is of much practical use, however much fun it might be to learn. I really feel for people for whom learning is NOT fun and where much student loan accrues--a real Lose/Lose.

Sadly, college has become a kind of society-wide hazing ritual to get in at the bottom of the former middle class...at least parents think so.

Because we were frugal when frugal wasn't cool, we could basically write a check and buy a house but will not be doing that anytime soon (obviously).

Anonymous said...

BSEE Illinois Institute of Technology 1983

I live in a 3 bedroom condo in Boca Raton, Florida which I paid cash for in 1999. No debt.

For all intents and purposes, I am retired. I had a very lucky break... after losing a programming job in Los Angeles in 1989 I managed to get some contract work with IBM in Austin, Texas. I used to hang out at the Fidelity brokerage office in the Arboretum at lunchtime. There, I met some enginners who worked at Dell computer. On their advice, I bought $6,000 worth of stock. I nearly sold it when it took a dive (along with the entire market) in the months leading up to the first Gulf war - fortunately, I didn't panic and hung on. Even with peeling chunks off over the next decade, that one trade set me up for life.

Most of my money is tied up in boring, income producing investments (no real estate though, except my house). In addition, I keep about $1 million in a trading account and have done reasonably well with it.

I should note, that I have been buying homebuilder stocks over the past month or two, and intend to keep increasing my position for the forseeable future.

menlobear said...

Director @ large Internet company.
Stanford MBA
Brown Univ BA

Live in Silicon Valley @ rent

onechase said...

AB, Harvard
JD, Harvard

Anonymous said...

Hi, it's the guy with the Applied Math/Chemistry bachelors:

I'd like to know, from the other JDs, who'd gone onto IP/patent a/o corporate, what their experiences were like?

Brain Surgeon said...

Anonymous October 05, 2007 1:15 PM said...
"Brain Surgeon. I rent a $50 million dollar beach front estate with ten staff, including a cook for $200 a month. I read HP several times an hour, and I'm stocking up on guns and gold. Once this thing plays out, I'll swoop in and buy up several city blocks of prime real estate."

I might suggest that BELIEVING you are a brain surgeon is not enough. It sounds like you have already done serious damage by attempting brain surgery on yourself.
------------------------------
------------------------------

I AM SO a brain surgeon!!!!
And I'm better than all the other ones, cuz I can do it with nothing more than a power drill.
Don't believe me? Well, smartypants, as it turns out YES I DID operate on myself with a power drill and as you can see I turned out fine.

Deek said...

BA UC Berkeley
MHA Tulane University

No student loans outstanding (all paid off).

Anonymous said...

PhD, Math, N.C.State
Now working as Programmer/Statistician in Human Genetics.

Anonymous said...

- Bachelor's in Industrial Design
- Bachelor's in Computer Graphics (unfinished)
- BSBA in General Business, minor in Economics, Summa Cum Laude, member of a bunch of honor societies and Greeks)
- Universite Sorbonne Paris: Cours de Langue et Civilisation Française; Gestion & économie d’entreprise
- Preparing to do MBA at the ESADE in Barcelona or London Business School

- Wife has a bachelor's in International Business and manages major international design firm.

Sold at peak, happily renting a 500k oceanfront condo for only $900/month, including A/C, cable, private beach, pool, concierge, valet, gym, etc. Invested profits from home sale and major savings from renting, into emerging markets, foreign currency, gold, and energy. I also bought some properties overseas, while the exchange rate was much more favorable. Portfolio has double digit returns; no debt and free to move anytime. I work in International Trade.

a.creampuff said...

B.S. Physics
Masters, Earth Science from Johns Hopkins U.
Supervisor/programmer.

Not wealthy, but slightly ahead of the curve for my age group. Single, renting, no rush to own a house or keep up with the Joneses. Never had a microsecond of worry about money, mostly based on common sense passed on from parents. Just another HP DOPE.

Anonymous said...

What is this antagonistic thing you have with Phoenix/ASU/Scottsdale? You don't like Stevie Nicks? Alice Cooper? Wonder Woman? :-)

Anonymous said...

B. Sc. in translation studies, Laurentian University, Sudbury, Canada.

No student loan debt.

The most important thing I learned in university was how to learn.

Clint8200 said...

ME:
BS Accounting - Linfield Colege
BS Economics - Portland State University

People buying at the top:
English Majors!

Anonymous said...

Hey Cramer, care to share your academic and professional profile? We know you read us.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree with the posters who say that what we learn in college has no practical use. I've been using what I've learned in college all the time: Statistics, Finance, Economics, Risk Management & Insurance, foreign languages, discipline, how to party heavily, Operations Management, organization, Business Law, etc, etc, etc. Perhaps you went to the wrong school.

Anonymous said...

MS in computer science and MBA.

Anonymous said...

DOPES passed 6 hours of realtor classes after getting his GED

Anonymous said...

MBA in Accounting and Finance

I will get my PhD in Economics and make a living by spewing out rosy scenarios.

Erick said...

BS Chemical Engineering from U of I,
MBA (Major Bastard Award)

-meaning I went through the motions, put up with the crap, and drank the cool aid. Not to mention put up a lot of cash and went into debt to get these so called sheepskins.

Anonymous said...

BS Mechanical Engineering.

Work as a contractor in aerospace (that typically means planes and heli's more than space).

As a contractor the money is good, 58 per hour. As a direct employee it can be pretty shitty though considering the amount of crap you have to take (like maybe 85k for 20 years experience (degreed engineer)).

Of course like all contractor industries there are lots of bullshitters. Only requirement, you must be a good bullshitter.

Typically these folks have little education but instead a parent that helped them develop their bs. Not to mention their natural aptitude for lying. They typically get 45 per hour. Definately not bad cash telling stories.

I feel lucky and truly blessed. The BSME was achieved by incredible hard work, but falling into aero contracting was pure happenstance.

Get an MS in Engineering? Can't imagine a more profound waste of time, except getting a realwhore liscence of course.

Anonymous said...

B.S. in Civil Engineering, University of Utah grad. $76K/year, truck and bonuses put me up near $100k. I still rent...bidding my time and waiting for the mania to end.

Anonymous said...

Keith, you can't completely write off ASU. Granted, most of the people who get in are dimwits, but many of the ones who actually manage to graduate with degrees other than 'underwater basket weaving' are actually pretty smart. The business school (when I was there) had a Supply Chain Management program that was ranked #2 in the nation and the Accounting program was top ten. Pretty respectable rankings, I'm sure you'll agree. I have several friends who graduated from ASU and went onto Ivy League Grad and Law schools including Duke, Stanford, and Princeton. Including all it's campuses, ASU is the largest university in the country. You can't simply dismiss over 60,000 students as complete idiots.

Anonymous said...

Biz Dev for Angelo...Seriously.

Peace Out--You speak the truth!!

Anonymous said...

B.A. -- Univ of Washington, Seattle

MRS. -- married to Harvard University, B.A. Cum Laude, Univ. of Washington, M.D., MPH

-- Small Hat

Anonymous said...

B.A ('03) in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at a liberal arts college.

I'm currently a medicinal chemist in big pharma.

I've paid off the bulk of my student loans. The remaining balance constitutes the only debt I have. I currently rent and will continue to do so until home prices start to make sense again.

I understand the point you are making about how we HPers are not all poor, ignorant renters. But, I also know a lot of smart people -- good, capable folks with Docotorates -- who believed the bubble hype. Sometimes one's professional skills do not translate into the good money management skills.

Anonymous said...

Majored in elbow-bending at Eskimo Joe's, Stillwater, OK

Anonymous said...

BS, Civil Engineering, US Air Force Academy. Registered Professional Engineer in Colorado, and licensed General Contractor in California (commercial "A" license, not homebuilder "B")

Anonymous said...

No college - barely finished high school. Tinkered with computers since '82 and work as a Network Admin.

Income over 100K per year and another 17K per year from investment income (Not RE).

I don't care though. My overhead is $1700 per month - car, house, everything.

On schedule to retire in 8 years at age 46. Bought my first house in '95 at 25 yrs old. Laughing my ass off at the idiotic RE market for the past years.

Anonymous said...

BFA & MID. Homeowner since 1997, but would probably rent for at least a year if I sold my house today.

Anonymous said...

dumb peasant, waiting for the governmental carpetbaggers to build affordable housing as a money changer, bleed the taxpayers into more poverrty and get more shakedowns, kickbacks,rakeoffs and bribes and do it before they totaly collapse the dollar, not after....and if they are not totaly insane, rent control it, so they can get control of lives as well as all the moneys.......

Anonymous said...

dozens of mail order degrees, saved maybe hundreds of thousands of dollars, scared witless in going to doctors

Anonymous said...

University of Cambridge (UK)
Trinity College

Bachelor's, Master's and Doctorate in Math.

Annual household income: $450K
Still renting.

Anonymous said...

"Mr. patent attourney with 100,000 in student loan debt, cant i do your job with a 38 cent stamp and an envelope......"

Sure you can, just like I can cut open my stomach and remove my appendix. Go write some claims to cover whatever invention you think you have, argue back and forth with the patent office for three years, and then I'll design around your patent in 2 minutes. But hey, one day you'll have a nice plaque to hang on your wall.

AmazingRuss said...

BS - Computer Engineering, Cal Poly SLO

Made about $120k before I realized that wasn't worth the effort. Currently making about $50k, working about 2 days a week if I feel like it.

Rent a beat up big old house on 3 acres out in the California hills, 4 miles from the beach for $1100/month. I would guess it's "valued" at $800k or more, but the landlady only paid 25k for it in '66, so everybody's happy.

I drive a beat up old car that hasn't been washed since last summer...I bought a new one for the wife last year though, with cash. I love it when some beamer leasing git with a cellphone glued to his head tries to squeeze me on the freeway...nothing to lose here, come ahead on Virgil! They're so funny looking with their little red faces and their gelled up hair, braking hard with the windshield full of eyeballs :)

I sleep late, and only wear pants on the rare occasions I go to town. Telecommuting is a wondrous thing. Personal hygiene slips sometimes, but the wife applies corrective guidance when necessary.

Probably the very thing people visualize when they say 'loser renter'. Except for the fat bank account. I'm happy as a pig in mud, and feel kind of sorry for and contemptuous of the strivers, so it balances out.

If the cash offered for what I do provides me with the buying power to live a more socially approved lifestyle, I might give it a go again. I like fast cars, spiffy houses, and other toys as much as anybody. I'm not gonna burn up my life in exchange for things I'll be too damn tired to enjoy, though. Tried that for a few years, and it sucks.

There's a song by Charlie Daniels, "Long Haired Country Boy" that pretty much describes my current outlook:

"I ain't askin' nobody for nothin
if I can't get it on my own
if you don't like the way I'm livin
you just leave this long haired country boy alone"

AmazingRuss said...

"HOW MANY OF YOU REALLY NEEDED TO LEARN WHAT YOU LEARNED IN COLLEGE TO DO WHAT YOU DO NOW?"

I made good cash as an IT consultant/developer for 10 years before I got my degree. At least in my case, what I learned in college was very useful,and opened my eyes to what a crappy job I had been doing designing things. It forced me to investigate boring stuff that I never would have touched on my own, and made me much, much better at what I do.

I guess it depends on what you do and where/what you study. If you work for people that are too incompetent to spot poor work, it doesn't matter, but if you are out there selling a service, you won't last long if you aren't really good at what you do. My experience was that college made me really good at what I do.

Nizam said...

B.S Chemical Engineering. University of Virginia

Brenda said...

Bachelors and Masters in Psychology from Southern Illinois University. Not practicing psychology for a living (although my education still serves me extremely well) but own a small business making $80,000 a year. I saw the housing bubble coming when the low interest rates thrust a bunch of new buyers into the market thereby causing a sellers' dream market and prices of homes began to skyrocket irrationally. I knew this would come back to haunt our economy and started to look for other people wondering the same things, hence I found "HP". I think I've been a member since sometime in 2005.

Anonymous said...

"I've been using what I've learned in college all the time: Statistics, Finance, Economics, Risk Management & Insurance, foreign languages, discipline, how to party heavily, Operations Management, organization, Business Law"

Yeah, but in a way, a Special Student (Non-Degree) candidate can take a sampling of courses (like the list above) and come out as a business, renaissance man far better than a Kool-Aid "tunnel visioned" program which brainwashes everyone into thinking that they are the so-called best grads at { Chemistry, English Lit, Math, etc } a.k.a. Univ of Chicago style elitism. You see, many traditional colleges are oriented around that sort of mentality which keeps people content in their various depts or subdvisions (sometimes called silos) at the job.

I have a friend, who did a postdoc in structural biochemistry (with a prior ivy league PhD), and all she can think about is applying those methodologies to any kind of problem which comes her way. I hate to break it to her but that's having a hammer and seeing the world as a collective nail. Many others, who started with the graduate thing, MS->PhD->postdoc train ride, eventually left it for industry realizing that much of their education was a waste of time and energy.

Andrew from Russia said...

Oops, I'm an ASU grad. The acronym ASU, transliterated from Russian (Avtomaticheskiye Sistemy Upravleniya), means Automatic Control Systems. Trying to stay in the field.

The 6-digit earnings quoted by other posters are funny. But at least I don't have any debt, save any outstanding student loans - no one would lend to students when state scholarship equaled $3.50/mo (you could also rent a fantastic dorm room for $0.50/mo.)

Anonymous said...

BS - Finance
MBA - Finance
CFA
CAIA candidate

pwnd

Anonymous said...

Regular poster, going anon for this one.

BA Public Administration (that's poli sci and econ)
LLB (that's what we call a JD in Canada)
MBA (via distance education, through a good Canadian school - I feel the need to say this because some people feel that cheapens the educational value)
85th percentile GMAT (6/6 on both writing samples)
98th percentile LSAT - seriously, this may have been a fluke since I never scored that well in practice.

Despite the LLB, I never did become a lawyer - it just never worked out for me, long story. The only valuable lesson I learned in law school was how to structure my thoughts.

I don't even really use my MBA much in my work. The degrees were just sheepskins that the gatekeepers at HR showed to their bosses in order to earn their gold star.

I'm a lowly software consultant and my income is just under 6-figures - not much considering all the fancy book-learning I did but sometimes I think it's more than I deserve for what I do.

I don't think I deserve more money. I do think I deserve higher quality, lower cost housing.

I am debt free and I rent.

Anonymous said...

B.A. Vanderbilt

J.D. UCLA

Anonymous said...

BA and MS Management. I work as a program manager in Los Angeles. $144+ this year. Wife has a CPA and makes $60K+ per year. We have lived in LA for the past six years and have watched the housing market go into the stratosphere. We've looked at buying but my wife (bless her) would not let me talk her into what she calls 'suicide loans'.

Right now the housing market in our area (the South Bay) is flattening out but no real drops in prices. Same cannot be said East of here in the Inland Empire or North in the Valley.

Right now we live in a 2 bedroom apartment for $1600/month. It's close to our jobs and in a safe, quiet area. We have (and will continue) to put money away for a house and wait for the coming drop.

Anonymous said...

Electrician $80K
For the longest time, I never could understand how my friends who made less money owned homes, while I rent an apartment.

I guess they CAN'T afford to own a home.

Anonymous said...

B.S. - Geology
M.S. - Geology

I'm a geologist - duh. (oil & gas explorationist)


Hey there, my brother is a geologist also, with a doctorate from Stockholm University. He works for a water/environmental company, after years of working for a Canadian gold mining company in South America (French Guiana). Crazy dude, they used to drop him by helicopter in the middle of the Amazon jungle with a few natives and he would seek gold with them for a month. Tough mofo. Caught malaria 12 times.

Anonymous said...

Bachelors and Masters in Psychology from Southern Illinois University. Not practicing psychology for a living (although my education still serves me extremely well) but own a small business making $80,000 a year.

I identify myself more with the behaviorism school of thought. Am I wrong? (I said it just like Bill O'Reilly) Pavlov ain't got sh!t on me!

Anonymous said...

B.S. EE
45 YEARS OLD
Been reading HP a couple of years now.
Own home free and clear. It's my home and not a commodity.

Have children, thus the desire to see sanity come back into the system.

Hope to see prices return to 1998 levels.

Holly said...

Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Brigham Young University

Anonymous said...

MS, BS Mech Eng. Drexel U.

No debt, high net worth, self-employed, sold house in
'03 in anticipation of crash.

Anonymous said...

Amazing how many engineers are on this thread. I have a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Johns Hopkins and an MS in Aerospace Engineering from UVA.

Work in Asia (Thailand), here an MBA means Married But Available.

Earn about $500K including bonuses, so what though? Taxes are too high.

Tangelo Mozilo said...

JD; MA-Philosophy

AmazingRuss said...

"Amazing how many engineers are on this thread"

We are among the small segment of the population that can actually do math, and could identify suicide loans before they were named as such.

Blogs like this are therapy for folks swimming in a sea of morons.

Anonymous said...

Me - Ph.D. in Science.
Husband - Harvard MBA.
Together making $250,000.00 a year and currently *renting* in the Northern Virginia/DC area after moving here 2 years ago. And boy are we glad we're renting. Housing bubble is 2 years past its peak now with prices falling monthly and foreclosures abounding here. LOTS of for sale signs around with a prominent "bank owned" header. No, we're not dumb uneducated renters and looks who's laughing now as all these people making 50K per year were buying million dollar properties with *no money down*. It's so simple, don't buy what you can't afford! We can't wait to get into your $1.5 million dollar foreclosed house next year for $750,000, which is what the bank is going to take for it as this meltdown continues. Oh and with a nice $175.000.00 down payment too.

charlatan said...

MA (oxon) Mathematical Sciences

Oxford is a very strange uni: you get a masters for your three degree, and they call it a master of the arts rather sciences when your degree has the word sciences in it. go figure.....

Anonymous said...

box of rocks renter with no debt and lots o cashola waiting for the bubble to implode.

charlatan said...

“HOW ABOUT THIS QUESTION (AND ANSWER HONESTLY): HOW MANY OF YOU REALLY NEEDED TO LEARN WHAT YOU LEARNED IN COLLEGE TO DO WHAT YOU DO NOW?”

not me, although i spent much of my time at university lounging around watching sport on tv which is bizarrely enough what i now make money doing (gambling while i watch).

charlatan said...

three year degree

charlatan said...

as for the figures (translated into dollars):

the gambling brings in about $60k a year (not considered taxable in the uk which is nice) and the wife makes about $12k working part-time. no debt, saving for after our presumably even bigger crash. a nice place here in glasgow (i.e. somewhere i wouldn't mind living for decades rather than years) costs at least $500k these days. we're halfway there in savings and prices seem to have peaked already. i'll be disappointed if i can't buy one in cash in four or five years.

Anonymous said...

"MBA (via distance education, through a good Canadian school - I feel the need to say this because some people feel that cheapens the educational value)"

That's cause of the whole Univ of Phoenix (Keith's favorite town) online scam. They've kinda ruined it for everyone else who's authentic.

London University's offered top distance programs for the British Commonwealth (now the world) for well over a century...

MBA:
http://tinyurl.com/yqpdu2

Other programs:
http://www.londonexternal.ac.uk

Anonymous said...

Ph.D. Psychology
---------------------------

So, how does that make you feel?

Anonymous said...

Work as a contractor in aerospace (that typically means planes and heli's more than space).

As a contractor the money is good, 58 per hour.
---------------------------------

I have always thought that the aero engineers are underpaid. Must be due to the low number of employers. Companies can get away with paying below value because they know the aero engineer can't just walk down the street and get a new job.

Anonymous said...

BA in History but I also studied math (including linear algebra and differential eqns) as well as some physics.
Currently working in IT.
Realized it was not a real estate sale in 2000 when I was living in Southern California. Now it's downright bubblicious there. Glad I didn't take the Kool-Aid. Happily renting in Seattle.

Quentin Daniel said...

BA Psychology but work as an IT consultant making approx $180K annually. Have two homes with fixed rate mortgages at 5.25% and 5.325%. One is a cash flow positive vacation rental. Equity in homes is approx $450K and neither are in bubble country. Have $650K in IRA's and $25K always in savings for rainy day. No credit card debt. Accumulating physical gold and silver (with patience, on eBay you can snag 90% silver US coins well below spot price).

Anonymous said...

BA - Accounting (U of WA)
BA - Information Systems (U of WA)

Anonymous said...

the moving of the Cardinals" football team from downtown tempe put an end to the asu party feel on a lot of weekends in aug thru jan....

Anonymous said...

Masters of Science
Masters of Business Administration
Bachelor's of Art, languages

Own since 1996, 75 acres in the green mountain state. Its the 1950's here, by the way.

DW

Taneglo Mozilo said...

HOW ABOUT THIS QUESTION (AND ANSWER HONESTLY): HOW MANY OF YOU REALLY NEEDED TO LEARN WHAT YOU LEARNED IN COLLEGE TO DO WHAT YOU DO NOW?

--------------------------------

I did. Or rather, I needed the degree to do what I do now. It's that way with a lot of professions.
The degree proves that you are smart/dedicated enough to work in a given field. The stuff that you actually learn while getting the degree is really a bunch of half-useless crap.

Cow_tipping said...

Bachelors in engineering. Civil engineering too, work as an IT minion for 15 years. Debt - $0, never. Education is nearly free in some (as it should be) countries and based on merit.
Cool.
Cow_tipping.

Anonymous said...

B.S Finance,Masters Finance (not completed when I realized it was a rehash).

30 years plus in Finance/Institutional money raising for struggling OTC stocks or private Start-Ups.

Made many bundles - Thank You & very Happy.

Own ONE house here in Sarasota, Everybody thought I was nuts now everyone else is going nuts. Some of these speculators own many, many houses, e.g. 10 was the desired number a couple of years ago and I personally know some "DOPES" that bought "more - at any price."

They will all die in 2008-2009 and I will THEN buy what they're selling.

Ya'll need to come join the party in 2009 in Sarasota, Fl. I am absolutely sure it will be a lotta fun then.

BUT,until then watch out for the bodies!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

BA - Colorado
MBA - Vanderbilt
Post grad exec program - Harvard Business School

Anonymous said...

BS Finance University of Wisconsin Milwaukee magna cum laude
MS Accounting University of Wisconsin Milwaukee
Level 2 CFA candidate

Anonymous said...

foreigner - lawyer - university teacher,

LL.M. (Harvard Law School)
M.Sc., M.Jur. (Oxford University)
Senior research fellow in law (European).. between hope and despair on housingmarket in my home country.