On Monday morning, I woke up and walked to the office just like any other morning. I usually pass by a number of newspaper boxes along the way, and I scan the day’s headlines. Monday’s headline was – “Talks Fail as Toronto Library Workers Go on Strike”. I didn’t pay much attention at first. Then I did a double take. Wait, what? I didn’t even know the library workers were in negotiations. As a response, termed their ‘contingency plan’, the City of Toronto has shut down every public library in the city for the duration of the strike. As I talked to people on Monday, I realized that no one was expecting this. And then I realized how many people this impacts.
Meet Jill. Jill has a Master’s degree, works an average job and makes $60,000/year. She is loyal to her company, and they reward her with an annual average increase of 3%/year over the course of her 30 year career. Jill is a diligent saver, and every year saves 20% of her gross income. Over the course of 30 years, through financial up and downs, she earns an average 5% annual return. At the end of a 30 year career, Jill has a retirement portfolio valued at $1.14 million dollars.
Meet Sarah. Sarah is a PhD student at a Canadian university. She is funded and receives $20,000/year over the course of her 5 year degree. Because she is essentially making minimum wage and just barely supporting herself, she doesn’t accumulate any significant savings. Continue readingLike What You See? Share the Story!
My plans to start this blog earlier were mildly derailed by a minor life crisis. I’m downplaying it, but it was really rather huge. Last year, in a similar crisis of conscience, I left my well-paying job to go back to school and complete a PhD.
Fast forward 1 year later and two weeks ago, I initiated the process of downgrading my registration from a PhD program to a Master’s program. I actually had planned to quit completely and walk away with nothing, but my supervisor pointed out that that wasn’t necessary as long as I’m willing to stick it out for another 6 months. So that’s what I’ll do. By the end of the summer, I will have another degree and be back on the street.