California proposed minimum wage increase, much needed

As students, we are familiar with the term, “starving, broke college student.” It may not be as literal as it sounds, but it is a phrase that depicts the hardships of a working college student.
Most full-time students at four-year universities take an average of 15 units per semester. For every unit a student is enrolled in, professors recommend that they spend three to four hours per day studying and completing homework for that course. This makes having a full-time job nearly impossible.
In order to alleviate the financial stress of living, most students take on a part-time job.
After the recession of 2008, it has become rare to find a part-time job that pays more than minimum wage. Currently, California’s minimum wage is $8 an hour.
To help ease the substantial gap between minimum wage and the cost of living in California, the state assembly approved a bill to raise minimum wage over the next five years.
According to a study done by the Huffington Post, out of the 10 cities in the nation with the highest cost of living, California had four.
To break it down for the average person, a college student who has a part-time job works an average of 10-20 hours per week making only $8 an hour. At the high end of that, with taxes being taken out, the part-time student worker makes less than $300 per bi-weekly pay period.
Especially living in one of the most expensive states in the nation, the average student finds it difficult to be able to live without financial worry.
The ultimate goal for every college student is to be able to graduate college, land their dream job and become an independent individual. Although, how can that be achieved if students can barely afford to make it through college without the financial help?
The bill that is currently making its way through the California Assembly would take a huge step in the right direction to jump start the younger generations career and subside the amount of debt many have to take on in order to graduate from college.
An increase in minimum wage would mean that students would be able to go to school full-time, work part-time and be able to pay for the basic necessities while in college.
By passing this bill, it will allow for students to break away from depending solely on their parents for financial stability.
In return, it would be creating a state of semi-independence that would help with the transition from college to life after graduation.
Currently, the amount of millennials (young adults ages 18 to 31) living at their parents’ home last year reached its highest point in at least four decades. According to a new Pew Research Center analysis of census data, 36 percent of millennials lived with their parents in 2012.
This can be contributed to the high cost of living.
By increasing the minimum wage in California, students, such as many on The Banner staff, would be able to pay for more of their schooling on their own while taking out less loans.
Raising the California minimum wage would do nothing but help the millennial generation.

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