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Good luck with returning to school --- Pixy pointed out that you'd pay a premium to get IRA $$ out --- maybe I'd be less concerned about the taxes as you may be in a higher bracket later -- after the school? You mention "foolish debt" which could be userious, non-deductible credit card rates. It might be safe to assume IRA growth of 10% over time --- tax deferred. But who can forecast in the short run? And debt interest is for sure! One tie breaker may be flexibility: If you had an unexpected bill in the last semester would it be easier to tap your own IRA funds then --- or would the cards or other sources of funds be available with certainty then?? Maybe -- even though you speak of full time school -- if you could find some way to generate a bit of income -- which would be nearly tax free, you might avoid five or ten thousand in debt over the next year or so..... wishing the best!

Hope this helps a little........ Jack
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