One of the realities of our higher education system is that student loans are increasingly a part of the landscape. According to the Wall Street Journal, two-thirds of students graduate with student loan debt. And according to ConsumerReports.org, student loan debt has surpassed credit card debt in the United States. Student loan debt is so common now that we pretty much assume that we “need” it in order to get a higher education. But what has been causing the rise of student loan debt and what can you do about it?
One of the main causes of rising student loan debt is education inflation. For the most part, there are three different aspects of education inflation:
Recent economic conditions have probably also contributed to higher collective student debt, since more people have gone back to school in response to job scarcity. Additionally, economic conditions have contributed to a reduction in available scholarships, likely leading some students to take out student loans, since they are unable to cover the cost with scholarships.
Chances are that you will need to come up with some way to save up for college, as well as avoid being one of the 14% of students that default within three years of making the first student loan payment. Some things you can do to avoid being overwhelmed with student debt include:
It is possible to get in over your head with student loans, as we’re seeing as student loan debt continues to rise. As you prepare for a higher education, make sure you are smart about your loans so that you can effectively deal with student loan debt after graduation.
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