(emotional piano music) I hate the feeling of not
having anything that I can do about something that I find unjust. And so pursuing law school
is something that I find necessary for me to feel
like I have the tools to do something about something. (whirring) (camera snaps) My grandmother was actually a very famous Mongolian opera singer, and my
mom went to school in Russia and got a bachelor’s and
master’s in psychology and was even teaching
psychology at a university. When she immigrated to the US, she went from being a university professor to scrubbing toilets at a restaurant. It’s just kind of what it
was like to be an immigrant. Khaliun Amarburen (Cheering) I went to Pepperdine for four years and I graduated with a bachelor’s
in International Studies. I’m the first person in my whole family to go to college in the U.S., and everybody was so proud of me. But it was a little bit
difficult to imagine how my family would be able to afford it when I was in high school and getting a scholarship
was a huge blessing. I’ve been interested
in going to law school. A friend of mine is in
law school currently and she actually got a scholarship, because if you score
well enough on the LSATs, some schools waive tuition apparently? And so I’m like okay, I’m gonna study as much as I need to to get as much financial
aid as I can first. And then giving myself time
to start saving up some money. I work a lot as a babysitter, I have this great family that
is like a second family to me. I’ve known Genevieve since
she was like eight years old, so she used to be shorter than me and now she’s taller than me. Are you gonna miss me if I move? [Genevieve] Yes. Possibly taking out loans for my studies. You should have told me this sooner, so I can make a pros and cons chart. It’s not really like, “Oh, I don’t have money for
grad school. I can’t go.” I know it’s something that
I have in my back pocket. How many people out
there have student loans that they’re struggling to pay off. They will open a lot of doors for me. Uncharted waters, make me a huge success. It is kind of scary. Very very tricky topic. How I will pay it back,
what the terms are. It’s so important to do your research. I’ve never had to take out
a loan before, personally. (sighs) Seeing it as an investment… scares the crap out of me. My boyfriend does have
student loans from undergrad, and he doesn’t regret taking out his loans and going to college. You’re using your thumb to pinch and then this finger to pinch. (laughs) You’ll never be a true Mongol. I think you out to do this. Student loans, they’re
like a relationship. You have to trust in it. You’re not quite sure what the outcome of giving yourself into that will be, but hopefully it pays off. My mom definitely encourages me the most to go to grad school, because she knows that in this modern age, you going to grad school, even in U.S. or even abroad is beneficial. Hi, Mommy. – Hi, how are you? – Hey. – Hi David. (speaking Mongolian) – Khuushure? Okay, let me see. – I was trying to teach
David how to like pinch them. – Oh, you did good job. – Thank you. – He didn’t pinch any of them. – Good job. (laughing) – Back in the late 80s / early 90s when my mom immigrated here from Mongolia, she didn’t speak English, she
didn’t really mean much here, and she tells me every day,
“I’m so glad that I could “provide my children
with these opportunities “that I didn’t have,” and “I
would be doing so much with it “if I could’ve been you “and had all these doors opened for me.” And she believes getting as much education as you possibly can is the key to success. (piano music) I don’t want to go to
law school necessarily to become like a lawyer, per se at a firm, at a corporation or anything like that, but a master’s in law
is very multi-faceted. Being able to understand how I can lobby for
certain laws and policies is something that’s going
to help me help others. My dream is to work for
the United Nations – to be able to make a change in the world and help people in developing countries because my own family came
from a developing country and struggled with everything that I don’t even think
about on a daily basis. I foresee probably having around maybe $200,000 of debt for grad
school, for law school. I know for the next like five, 10 years I might have moments of “Oh crap, how much do I
have to pay off still?” But it would probably be really gratifying once I take that leap. My little brother is a
finalist for scholarship. – Yeah, he’s going to go study economics. – You wanna hear my grandma singing? – [Friend] Is she famous? – She was, yes, in Mongolia. (music playing) I love you, Mommy. Thank
you so much for always understanding me and supporting me and basically giving up your
life and everything you knew – your career, your family in Mongolia – to provide a better life for me. You’re the most selfless
person in the world, and I don’t know what
I would do without you. I just really hope that
this gives me an opportunity to do everything I want to do in the world and make my family proud. (Grandmother singing) – [Jillian] Who’s there? Just me. (laughs) Which means… grace period is over. – Alright Jillian, I just want to get some voice
into your cans. Are you ready? – [Jillian] Got it. – Here we go. Let me know
when you can hear yourself. – [Jillian on Recording] My
name is Jillian Macklin– – I can hear myself. – [Jillian On Recording] I’m 30 years old, I’m originally from the
DC metropolitan area, and I grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland, and I live here in New
York City, New York. – [Director] Great. – I’m an actor and voice-over artist. My life here in New York
has been interesting. This is year four for me. I came up here for grad school,
I just graduated in May, and so I’m staying here career-wise, but New York is interesting in the fact that there’s
a lot of different people from a lot of different backgrounds. They always say, “New York is a place if you can make it here,
you can make it anywhere.” But to be in a career
full-time in New York, it always looks possible
and feels impossible. It’s one of those things where
you have to tell yourself “you can make it” every day, because we hear no about 50 times until you get that one yes. It don’t make anything for yourself. When I was here was at your
worst, but when I needed you, where were you? – [Director] Alright, great job, Jillian. Why don’t you step out from the booth? We’ll take a break for a few minutes. – Gotcha. Time, time for some action,
cameras flashin’ everywhere, main attraction. – [Crewman] Take three, mark. – My parents have always
been very supportive of everything that we wanted to do. We were doing music and I was in dance classes
from the time I was three. My brother played the violin. We were just really active kids. (young Jillian chanting) I was always the animated one. From the time I was about seven or eight, my job title for growing up was the next female Patch
Adams and a pediatrician. – [Adult] And what is your name? – My name is Jillian Macklin, I live here. – I was like, “Oh my god, you can laugh “and do medicine at the same time. “This is it.” That was my favorite thing, and I used to work at a hospital
part-time in high school and took like college course
classes for everything. And I was still doing theater on the side because my father, for the
longest time, had always said, “You should do theater,
you’re really good at it.” And I told him it was a joke because you don’t get paid doing that. No man. It’s one of those things, how
do you say, it’s a passion? And my mom said, “Whatever you
want to do, then go after it, “but figure it out.” And then I end up switching
my major to theater, and I got into grad school on the first try and I didn’t realize it
was a really big deal because it’s really competitive, and I graduated and I have an MFA. And I’m glad I actually made that decision even though now I’m thinking like, “Wow, grad school – you
have to pay for that.” So that’s the hard part. The worst, the worst wasn’t ya leavin’. Money always seems to be like an embarrassing topic, I think. Payback. I mean, in my age group, student debt starts to
affect you in weird ways, like when you want to get married. Are you joining in debt? Tiger mountain. – [Director] Hey Jillian,
you ready for take one? – I’m about $68,000 in debt. Master, I love you, why
don’t you want to be here? I am single, yes. The scary part is when grace period ends. In order to pay off my bills,
it’ll be about 25 years if I pay them $800 a month. I’m not hiding. The best thing about acting and performing is really just putting yourself
into someone else’s skin and being vulnerable in that. And I always say I like to
make villains believable, because people always
think they’re evil people, but you have to make them human also. This Jillian character,
she’s pretty cool, laid-back. So being able to be someone
else for that moment and understand why you
are the way you are, part of the human experience
– it’s really nothing like it. I like her nails, always
something different. And the character, if you let it, will teach you a lot
about yourself as well. You understand what
I’m sayin’ to ya, baby? You writin’ it all down? It’s like, uh, what was
the thing, MapQuest. You gotta put things on the computer. In a typical day, a lot of actors have
auditions or rehearsal at the same time, trying to
figure out what the next gig is while you’re in a current gig so that you don’t have a
break between your paychecks. Pay me now. Boom! And it’s a usual hustle and bustle. In my personal experience, the real value in going to grad school is a overarching theme
of bettering yourself, bettering my craft, and really getting to know
who I am as an artist. The (laughs) the
struggles of grad school – it is the most time-consuming
thing I have ever experienced. I learned how to sleep with my eyes open. Well, the good thing about student loans is that you can get money
to pay for your school so you can go, and you can
even get books and stuff. The scary part is when grace
period ends. Your money’s due. You’re told to do it, you know. Get smart. Be wise. Get a better job. But if you have to go through
loans to get all that, it makes you feel like was it worth it. This country cannot begin without us. But as a person can
only walk with one leg, this country cannot work without us – we, the people, together.
That is how we survive. It’s something that
you’re kind of drawn into because you don’t really have a choice. Freedom of choice, freedom of voice. These are things that we look forward to. For your family, for your
friends, for everyone. This is how we work together. (crowd applauding) Mommy! – Shh! – What makes me the happiest in life is probably the love
of my family, honestly. There’s really nothing like
it, like they support me, they get on my nerves and
love me at the same time. I get on their nerves, and it just works. But to have that, as like
a grounding thing for me, there’s nothing like it. I just want to see your face.
Back up, Mom. You’re so close. Okay. Nice necklace! Very classy. Okay, wanted to see your faces.
Happy Anniversary, love you. (parents talking on phone) Bye Dad. What scares me the most in life is basically not being able
to take care of my parents because they’re older, and
not having that be a weight. It’s something I don’t
like to think about, but it’s really scary. So, not being able to care for them in the way that I would like to – I would love to take my parents on an all-expenses-paid vacation, for, I mean, they’ve taken us
on vacation for family things all the time, and I want to be able to give something to them. But student loans are not helping me with my plans to give
back to my parents at all. The emotion of carrying student debt – I would say it feels like a dark cloud, like you know it’s there,
you try not to look at it, you try to pretend like it’s a sunny day, but it’s always there, it’s
like looming all over the place. If I had to repeat this
journey that I’ve taken, I would probably do it all over again, only because you can only grow when you leave your comfort zone, and coming to New York, I
completely left my comfort zone. And it was very cozy, I
had a nice place to live, but I’ve learned so much about myself as person and as an artist
that it’s invaluable. I can’t take that back. And I went for it, and I’m proud to say that
actually I’m doing it, so… We had over $550,000 of
student loan debt combined, from my undergraduate at
Berkeley, his at Notre Dame, and then our combined
medical school loans. (soft music) – [Child] Inside or outside? – [Aimee] You want to be a skeleton when you go trick-or-treating, right? – [Child] Yeah! A bow tie that’s yellow. – Ready, let’s do it. – Hey, Mommy. – Hi. – Hi, Mommy. – I met Aimee, actually, at
Jefferson Medical College, where we were in the same class. Then met back at a local
bar called Doc Watson’s and shared a couple drinks
together, did a little dancing. – You were wearing an In-N-Out
t-shirt, and I was like, “This guy’s definitely from California.” – From there it was history. And now we live in the Woodland Hills area with our three kids,
ages eight, six and four. – Maddie. – Sienna. – Sienna… [Laughter] Luke! – We live one mile from my parents, which was a very strategic move. – Grandma! – Oh my gosh, Grandma’s here! – And a necessity when we
decided to move back West. – You want to eat something? – It enables us to have
really fulfilling careers, because it’s pretty demanding. I’m a family medicine doctor and have my own primary
care office in Malibu. Do you have any history of asthma? – No, I’ve had… – My grandfather was
a primary care doctor, so I had role modeling from an early age of somebody who developed really great, trusting
relationships with people. His ability to create trust
in his family and his friends was really inspiring and I felt a connection with
that I wanted to help people. We’re gonna hand out toothbrushes, apples, (children laughing) celery sticks… – My mom’s actually a nurse practitioner, so she was in the medical field, and so I was exposed to
it a little bit early on. Are you going to fill
this thing with candy? The whole thing. I am an E.R. doctor in
Van Nuys, California. When I started shadowing these doctors and seeing how they were making an impact in their patients’ lives, it
really just clicked with me and I said, “That’s
really what I want to do.” (child screaming) – [Aimee] Who’s ready? – [Children] Me! (laughing) – My parents were very
supportive in terms of saying, “Listen, wherever you
want to go to school, “especially for undergrad,
we can make it happen. “And if you need to take out loans, “then you take out loans.” – I think people are baited into thinking there’s an unlimited amount
you could ever spend on education because it’s so
valuable and it’s intangible, and it’s worth the hundreds
and hundreds of thousands. In some ways, it is a trick. – I didn’t have anybody that
said, “What are you doing?” If I had known more before I
started this process years ago, I would have tried to minimize the amount of damage that we had caused. – I just don’t know how many
years we’ve been friends. – Five. – We’ve been married for
ten years this past June. Graduated from medical school and the next weekend we got
married, it was June seventh. We absolutely had money fights
when it came down to it. I think that’s really
important to talk about. Coming out of Jefferson Medical School, and I’m a new husband. We
had our first child, Sienna, within the first year.
And so now I’m a new dad and at the time you’re in residency so you’re making okay money, but it’s not the doctor money
that everybody thinks of. And so these thoughts were
running through my mind of, “Gosh, how are you
gonna pay this off?” The lowest moment that I had
was on those trips down I-95 and thinking that I wasn’t
going to be a good husband or a good father because
I couldn’t support my wife or my daughter with the
amount of loans that I had. Call Aimee Ostick – Calling Aimee Ostick – mobile. I literally was having cold
sweats when I was driving down. I didn’t have a plan
and that’s what really worried me. In the emergency
department, it’s similar, where if you have a plan of how you’re going to
attack a very sick patient, it gives you a little bit of calm and can calm the rest of the team, and if you don’t have that plan, that’s when things spiral out of control. – Do you have a family history
of high blood pressure? – I do. – Okay, like your mother or your father? – My grandmother. – Your grandmother. Okay, okay. – You have all those things on top of you and then her student
loans and we put it here and my student loans we put it here, and a car loan that we had to get, and saving up to buy a house. – Two deep breaths, in and out. We were doing all of those sort of goals – the retirement and savings
and kids’ college and debt – but none of them really well, and we weren’t really
making a lot of traction. It was restrictive. We were staring at this large number that just didn’t seem to be
getting smaller for so long. You know, I was working 60 hours a week, I sacrificed a lot of moments early on in my kids’ lives because
I was working a lot. – 124 over 74, so that’s good. – So, last payment came
in December of 2017, and it really was just a whole weight that had been lifted off of our shoulders. I mean you feel like… (breathes deeply). Man, that felt really good. So it was 10 days in
Italy with no children. – Oh my gosh, you could
have put me in a box. – We ate and drank our way through… – Bottle of wine [crosstalk] – It was nice. – It was awesome. – It was very fun. – Part of learning how to manage money is learning how to be a good steward and taking care of your community. – We’ve been able to do some things, now that we are not paying
off the student loan debts, to help other people. – Any other debt, you just
have not a lot of margin in your budget for
those kind of disasters. Financial problems are
a big cause of divorce or a big cause of family issues, and we just needed to provide
at least some resources and some education. – The best part of the class is the community that you have with the people that are in that class. And so we do have the
ability to discuss finances in a setting that’s nonjudgemental. You’re young, you’re single, you don’t have any dependents. And a way to allow people to open up about what struggles they’re facing. And it wasn’t until we really decided that we were going to teach
this stuff that we said, “You know what? “The best way to attack this “is to focus on paying
off the student loan debt, “and just take all of our extra money “that we had above our living expenses “and throw that all towards
the student loan debt.” (children cheering) Most doctors have student loans and they’ve extended them
to 25- or 30-year terms. And so, all told it took us
seven years to pay it off. In six and a half years
we paid off $550,000. In the last nine months,
we just said, “Forget it. “Stop with the retirement,
whittle down the savings, “no vacations, let’s just get rid of it.” It’s caused us to have
a better communication which has reduced the amount
of stress – money stress – and reduced the number
of fights that we’ve had when it comes to money. I don’t think we would have
been able to accomplish what we accomplished if
we weren’t such a team. – What makes me most happy in
life are my knucklehead kids, for sure. – I thought you were going to say me. – You too. (laughs) – You know, wherever you
decide to spend your money is where your heart is, and for us, our kids are
the most important thing in our lives. We would absolutely send them to college and to medical
school debt-free, but – But they’re going to work in college. – Absolutely. – ‘Cause you know, it’s true! – Yeah, you’ve got to teach
them those lessons early on. – So they don’t come back
and live in your basement. – Right. – That’s the end game. – My mom calls it the glorious ordinary – Those things that you don’t even, that you can sometimes take for granted, but that are very important. Those are the little nuggets in life that I think really make a difference. (children screaming) (soft music playing)