Whether you are just starting your college experience or are in the home stretch of finishing it, most of us at South Dakota State have one thing in common- student loan debt.
Student loans can be different for everyone: you might owe a few thousand dollars, $10,000, $20,000 or more, or you’ve made it through college without taking any loans out.
Recently, President Joe Biden announced he would be implementing student loan relief for those who make under $125,000 a year, or less than $250,000 for married couples. He also announced plans to make other college loan payments more affordable by pausing federal loan repayment until Dec. 31, 2022, cutting monthly payments in half, fixing the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program and reducing the price of college and preventing price hikes in the future.
This announcement was met with very mixed reactions and a lot of both positive and negative takes on what this might mean for our economy.
Many people are happy about the decision, either because they themselves will benefit from the loan relief or because it will help make college more affordable to some. The program will especially benefit those from low-income backgrounds and people of color.
Others are concerned that this decision will lead to increased taxes to cover the increase to the deficit, or the total national debt for the U.S. Others believe Biden has not done enough to address the high cost of higher education and do more to lower the cost of tuition- or get rid of it altogether.
And there are some that are upset because this decision is coming after they have already paid their loans off or because they believe those who make the decision to take on financial aid in college should be required to pay off those loans themselves.
It’s understandable to be concerned about how this decision will impact the economy – although economists at Goldman Sachs, an investing and banking company, say the plan will have a “small” impact on spending and inflation in the next few years.
Some are upset because someone else will be benefitting from it and they didn’t. Admittedly a bummer, it’s not a good enough reason to not want the loan relief to go through.
Even having a fraction of their loans forgiven will improve the lives of millions of Americans, especially young Americans like us college students who will be able to enter the workforce without as much worry about handling daunting repayments.
Overall, while there are many uncertainties that still need to be figured out, it sounds like the loan forgiveness program is a step in the right direction toward making college more affordable, and allowing more Americans the opportunity to pursue a higher education.
The Collegian Editorial Board meets weekly and agrees on the issue of the editorial. The editorial represents the opinion of The Collegian.