Unlimited government loans for graduate students contribute to soaring debt burden



Columbia University campus.

Columbia University campus. Mario Tama / Getty Images

Graduates of top-tier master’s programs are increasingly unable to earn enough early in their careers to cut back on their insurmountable student loans. Wall street journal The analysis shows that this is due in part to the federal Grad Plus loan program, which “does not have a fixed cap on loan size for graduate students.”

Grad Plus, which students can use to cover tuition, fees, and living costs, is the fastest growing federal student loan program. Magazine, with recent interest rates up 7.9 percent. “Unlimited Loans” produce cash cows for graduate students, and prestigious schools that benefit from higher interest rates and “free-flowing” money can raise tuition fees uncontrollably. Magazine writes.

The most striking example is Columbia University, where recent MFA film alumni have been saddled with “the highest earnings of any major university master’s program in the United States,” the publication writes. Magazine… Recent graduates from federal loan programs had an average debt of $ 181,000, but half of them earned less than $ 30,000 a year two years after graduation.

Likewise, but less drastically, a master’s degree in publishing from NYU costs an average of $ 116,000 in loans, with an average early-career income of $ 42,000. Graduates of the University of Southern California’s MA in Marriage and Family Counseling “borrowed an average of $ 124,000, and half of them earned $ 50,000 or less in the same period.” Magazine reports.

In Colombia, faculty and staff have advocated for additional help for graduate students for years, but all universities have an “incentive” to expand their master’s programs, and they themselves “will not face the consequences” if students are later unable to repay the loan.

Said Zach Morrison, who earned his master’s degree in foreign affairs in film from Colombia in 2018, “There are always panic attacks at 2am when you think,“ How the hell am I ever going to pay for this? “”. Wall Street Magazine

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