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In 1981 a minimum wage earner could work full time in the summer and make almost enough to cover their annual college costs leaving a small amount that they could cobble together from grants loans or work during the school year. 4. In 2005 a student earning minimum wage would have to work the entire year and devote all of that money to the cost of their education to afford 1 year of a public college or university. 5. Now think about this there are approximately 40 million people with student loan debt somewhere over the 1.2 trillion dollar mark. According to studentaid.gov seven million of those borrowers are in default that is roughly 18%. Default is defined as being 270 days delinquent on your student loan payments. Once in default the loan balances increase by 25% and are sent to collections.
3. Only Consider Student Loans with The Best Terms - Remember the lower the interest rates the lower the loan which means the less you have to repay: Federal Perkins Loans Stafford Loans: Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELD) and Federal Direct Student Loan Program (FDSLP) Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) The Federal Parent PLUS Loans for Undergraduates Students (PLUS) Program Graduate and Professional Student PLUS Loans (PLUS). 4. Scholarships and Grants - Undergraduate scholarship and graduate fellowships are excellent aids to assist students in paying for their education. Unlike loans scholarships and fellowships can be considered free money since it does not have to be repaid. Thousands of scholarships and fellowships from thousands of sponsors give out every year.
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Here are some resources to get you started: FastWeb Scholarship Search College Board Fund Finder Scholarships.com LLC and Scholarship Search Sites Owned by Education Lenders scholarship central Award Database Next Student Scholarship Experts Broke Scholar College Data Wintergreen/Orchard House Scholarship Database College NET Mach25 and College View scholarship directory. 5. Military Student Aid is another valuable resource that offers exceptional scholarship opportunities: US Armed Forces Recruiting Programs Financial Aid for Veterans and their Dependents Veterans and the FAFSA HEROES Act of 2003 Books about Military Scholarships and Financial Aid for Veterans. Additional information can be found in the Education section of the Military.com web site.
Last week financial aid officers at Texas A&M University - a school with over 54000 students - heard from seven different lenders warning that they would no longer be able to offer federal student loans a situation that has made more than a few borrowers uneasy. Dyneche Duffield an incoming college student headed to Houston Baptist University is uncomfortable with the prospect of having to establish a relationship with a new lender other than her local bank which used to offer student loans. "I would have much rather taken out a loan there than somewhere where I didnt know anyone" Duffield said. While students like Duffield may still be able to go directly to the Department of Education for their federal college loans or find those remaining lenders who are still offering private student loans (albeit with more stringent credit criteria that are making it harder for students to qualify) the magnitude of the problem within the student loan credit markets and how deeply it has permeated the college loan industry is alarming to many administrators and officials in higher education.