It’s been a while since we’ve featured a guest contributor. Thanks to Jen Skidmore from the Student Success Center, we get to remedy that today.
Despite recent changes meant to simplify student loan repayment, we’re finding that students and graduates just don’t understand the intricacies of their loans and repayment options. The experts interviewed for this article say that student borrowers need to be presented with better information earlier, and they need to have the financial literacy resources to help them understand their rights and responsibilities.
This short infographic explains that although families still feel confident about the value of a college degree, they are contributing less out-of-pocket now than even three years ago. 2 in 3 families eliminated schools based on costs, but 40% still encountered unexpected expenses.
(Full study at www.SallieMae.com/HowAmericaPays)
While the University of South Carolina has low student loan default rates in comparison to the national average, these rates – the percentage of students who owe federal student loans who fail to make payments for 9+ months – are still increasing for public universities as of this year. Most default prevention work includes financial literacy and education on student loan repayment options – which the Student Success Center’s Financial Literacy Program offers to students for free.
If you know a student experiencing financial stress or if you’d like free financial literacy resources for your students, The Financial Literacy Program provides free one-on-one financial consultations to help students keep their financial stress in check. Students can meet with a Financial Literacy Peer Educator or program staff on any of the following topics:
· Money Management
· Building & Managing Credit
· Debt Management
· Financial Planning for Study Abroad
· Student Loans & Repayment Education
Students can make a free appointment by visiting www.sc.edu/success, or by calling 777-1000. The Financial Literacy Program is part of the Student Success Center, located in the Thomas Cooper Library.