If you’ve been watching the Democratic primary debates, you know that a lot of candidates say they know all about the student loan crisis because they too are still paying off student loans (it’s a pretty young batch, but still). So, of course, they’re all calling for student loan forgiveness.

Bernie Sanders’ senior policy advisor didn’t do her credibility any favors when she admitted she’s $180,000 in debt and pays $1,100 a month in student loan payments or half her rent. (Looks like she’s since deleted the tweet.) An actress who supports Sanders posted a video of a young woman who claims she’s carrying $226,000 in student loans while studying to be a speech pathologist.

As long as Democrats keep harping on student loan forgiveness as part of their platform (how about lowering tuition instead?) these stories are going to keep popping up everywhere. On Saturday, CNBC talked to a woman who has a half-million in student loans so she could earn her doctorate degree in naturopathic medicine and a master’s in acupuncture.

A master’s in acupuncture?

CNBC reports:

Elisha Bokman has been out of school for eight years. Still, her student loan balance is half a million dollars.

Today, for her doctorate degree in naturopathic medicine and master’s in acupuncture from Bastyr University, she owes $499,322.69.

She and her husband struggled to buy a house because of her debt. Eventually, the financial stress led them to a divorce. “He felt like he couldn’t live his life or do the things he wanted to do,” Bokman, 38, said. She wanted to open her own medical practice, but she said her student debt prevents her from getting a business loan.

“It really effects the remainder of your life,” Bokman said. “There’s no out.”

There is a way out — making your student loan payments — but the best way out is not to go in that deep in the first place.

The story doesn’t even reveal what job she has now, but she can’t open a medical practice because of her horrible credit rating, so our guess is she’s not even practicing naturopathic medicine.


Related: