Each year the dream of a college education becomes an even more unattainable reality as the economy teeters unsteadily and costs continue to skyrocket. For those students who have taken out loans, a dark cloud of debt is already looming over their future lives and careers.
Debt from student loans is expected to exceed $1 trillion for the first time in history as students are borrowing twice the amount of money for college than they were ten years ago, according to a USA Today College article.
According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, this means that Americans now owe more money on student loans than they do on credit card debt.
An even greater concern to college students is the fact that student loan debt is different from other types of debt as it cannot be alleviated by declaring bankruptcy.
These outstanding loans place students at a major disadvantage as they move into the job market and start their lives: “Students who borrow too much end up delaying life-cycle events such as buying a car, buying a home, getting married (and) having children,” Mark Kantrowitz, the publisher of FinAid.org, told USA Today.
The strain on future graduates’ finances also has major implications for the economy as a whole. With the next generation buried in debt and unable to feed the economy as active consumers the economy will most likely see a decline.
This has prompted a new federal law that will take effect on October 29 that aims to help students and their families determine an accurate tuition estimate. The law requires college websites to have a net price calculator, which can be adjusted to reflect individual circumstances.
This all makes prospective students wonder: Is a college education worth all the money? The decision is a difficult one as this new development leaves students to choose between potential financial problems caused by high College costs or a bleak, deflated job market. Ultimately, students and their families must make that decision for themselves.