WALL STREET CHEAT SHEET: 6 States Where Average Student Debt Is Over $30,000

Career College Central Summary:

  • Debt remains a prerequisite for millions of students obtaining a college degree. Across the nation, student loan levels continue to rise with each passing school year, but how much varies significantly by state and college.
  • The majority of graduates in the United States are holding a diploma in one hand and student loans in the other. In 2013, seven in 10 graduating seniors at public and private nonprofit colleges had student loans, according to a new report from the Institute for College Access and Success (TICAS). Nationally, the average debt for these graduates totaled $28,400, 2% higher than the previous year. However, at nearly one in five colleges, average debt burdens jumped 10% or more. In both years, about one-fifth of new graduates’ debt was in private loans.
  • “While loans are increasingly needed to get through school, graduating with burdensome debt is not a foregone conclusion,” said Lauren Asher, president of TICAS, in a press release. “Where you go to college matters, and the kind of loans you have matter, too. Federal student loans come with crucial consumer protections like income-based repayment plans, while private loans offer little or no relief if you hit a rough patch.”
  • How important is location? At the state level, average debt per borrower at graduation ranged from $18,656 to $32,795. In fact, six states averaged more than $30,000, while only one state averaged less than $20,000. As the table below shows, nearly all the highest debt states are in the Northeast and Midwest, with the lowest debt states in the West and South.

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