Student Loan Debt Reaches All-Time High

3 years 5 months 6 days ago September 17, 2013 Sep 17, 2013 Tuesday, September 17 2013 Tuesday, September 17, 2013 8:45:00 AM CDT in News
By: Andie Lowenstein, KOMU 8 Reporter
Embed Code Copied

COLUMBIA - Student loan debt has officially topped $1 trillion.

According to the government's consumer advocate, more than 33 million workers qualify to have their student loans forgiven because they work in public service fields. However, too few take advantage because the programs are overly complex and confusing.

Public service work includes, the military, teachers, firefighters, police officers, and those who work in hospitals and city halls.  Some other positions that qualify for loan forgiveness programs include city hall secretaries, state department of motor vehicles office clerks, and accountants at non-profit arts groups - positions that may not usually be seen as public service.

The data shows the largest group of beneficiaries is more than 6.8 million workers in education.

Kristie Harms, an English teacher at Battle High School and a graduate student, wishes she had known about these options sooner.

"I know a lot of teachers who are 10 plus years teaching and they're still paying off student loans, they're not even close," Harms said. "You know they're talking about having to pay mortgages and car payments and have kids...It's kind of scary for me knowing that that's going to be how long it takes."

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the nation's schools will need 425,000 new teachers by the end of the decade. However, sometimes it takes more than just passion to accept a lower starting salary. Eligibility for a student loan forgiveness program may be a good enough incentive.

"I think the average starting salary in Missouri is about $36,000 for a teacher," MU Financial Director Nick Prewett said. "So depending on how much they've taken out in student loans their payments could be a smaller percentage of that and so they could see some forgiveness on the back end."

All payments after October 1, 2007 are acceptable. To qualify for the student loan forgiveness program, one must make 120 on-time, full and monthly payments on Direct Loans. You must pay under a qualifying repayment plan and must be working full time at an eligible public service organization.

Prewett says since this is a relatively new program, there is no confirmed data yet to show just how beneficial it will actually be.

"At the end of a 10 year period if they don't miss a single payment then the rest of their student loan is going to be forgiven," Prewett said. "That doesn't take effect until October of 2017 so we're not really sure yet how many students are going to achieve that benchmark or what the average forgiveness for those students is."

For more information about the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program visit: http://studentaid.ed.gov/sites/default/files/public-service-loan-forgiveness.pdf

 

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - When the FBI arrested terror suspect Robert Lorezo Hester, his friend and neighbor Analee Shatlain said she was... More >>
8 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 10:06:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Some people on the front lines of drug abuse prevention and rehabilitation have suggestions for parents on how... More >>
9 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 9:32:43 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Vice President Mike Pence has planned to visit Missouri Wednesday to tour an equipment and engine... More >>
11 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 7:16:00 PM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The wife and stepson of the leader of a Ku Klux Klan group who was found... More >>
12 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 6:17:41 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — Democrats are asking Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens to allow an expansion of family leave options for employees... More >>
13 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 5:39:34 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia City Council rolled out an overhaul of city development and housing rules Monday. The city... More >>
14 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 4:58:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers are considering proposals to update state driver's licensing procedures to comply with federal law.... More >>
14 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 4:41:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA – Emotions were high as people told gut wrenching stories about how they are affected by the Affordable Care... More >>
15 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 3:54:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY – Gender accessibility has become a controversial topic on a national level, and a bill presented at a... More >>
16 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:50:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA- The University of Missouri System is looking for a chancellor with "a collaborative and transparent leadership style" who is... More >>
16 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:38:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Promoting residents to interact closely with the police is the main step for city staff to build a... More >>
16 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:31:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A Columbia man has been charged in federal court on accusations that he played a role in... More >>
16 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:13:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Fire Department was dispatched to a gas leak at Bouchelle Avenue and College Avenue Tuesday afternoon.... More >>
18 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 12:51:00 PM CST in News
JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — A Joplin man alleged that police used excessive force in his 2015 arrest. The Joplin... More >>
21 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 9:53:00 AM CST in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Authorities say two teenage cousins have died in a Kansas City crash. The Kansas City... More >>
22 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 8:43:52 AM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A 14-year-old boy is recovering from non-life-threatening injuries after being hit by a train in suburban... More >>
23 hours ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 7:33:09 AM CST in News
UNIVERSITY CITY (AP) — Authorities in Missouri are investigating after dozens of headstones were damaged at a Jewish cemetery near... More >>
1 day ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 4:39:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - As the warm weather approaches, the number of unwanted litters increases, putting a burden on local shelters. ... More >>
1 day ago February 21, 2017 Feb 21, 2017 Tuesday, February 21 2017 Tuesday, February 21, 2017 2:30:00 AM CST in Top Stories
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 50°
7am 50°
8am 52°
9am 57°
10am 60°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

6:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
7:00a
Today
11:00a
Rachael Ray
6:30a
King of the Hill
7:00a
Cheaters
7:30a
Cops Reloaded

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Blindspot
8:00p
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
9:00p
Chicago P.D.
7:00p
Arrow
8:00p
The 100
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld