President Obama Offers Much Needed Student Loan Relief

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by Staff on October 26, 2011

Speaking to students today at the University of Colorado, President Obama unveiled plans to help students struggling with loan debt.

The President’s plan would allow current students to cap their student loan payments at 10% of their discretionary income in 2012, two years earlier than originally proposed. Previously students were required to pay 15% of their discretionary income toward loan repayment.

In addition, a current student would have the remainder of her loan forgiven after 20 years of payments, five years earlier than previous legislation mandated.

The President’s second measure would allow students to consolidate loans from the Federal Family Education Loan Program (loans offered by private lenders but insured by the federal government) with direct federal student loans. The consolidated loans would be subjected to a small interest rate discount.

The President’s proposal was released on the same day the College Board reported that tuition and fees at private non-profit four-year colleges have risen 4.5 percent to $28,500. Costs at public four-year colleges have risen 8.3 percent, with in-state tuition and fees reaching $8,244.

Students are burdened with more loans than at any time in US history. Last year they took out more than $100 billion in student loans.

Are you one of the millions of students struggling under the weight of student loans? Do you think the President’s plan will help?

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