Empowering Access through College Affordability

If you’ve watched the news recently, you’ve probably heard a lot about the crippling debt many college students face after graduating. Their $1.2 trillion obligation, more than Americans’ credit card debt, influences their decisions on when to buy a car, a house and even start a family – most of which the millennial generation is delaying until later.

That’s why I was intrigued to learn about the expansion of the President’s Pay As You Earn (PAYE) program, which now allows student loan borrowers  who took out loans before October 2007, or who have not borrowed since October 2011, to cap their loan payments at 10 percent of their income. For example, according to the White House, if a 2009 graduate earned $39,000 a year but owed $26,500 in loan debt, PAYE would reduce monthly repayments by $126 per month and $1,500 a year compared to the standard repayment plan. For borrowers who received loans after this date, the PAYE program is currently available from a 2010 executive action.

Empowering this future generation of leaders who are eager to help people live their best possible lives, with the means to do so, will be a huge asset in continuing to improve our communities. While this is one part of a comprehensive solution to ensure more people have access to college, I trust this move will continue to ignite conversation among local and national leaders who desire to find the best ways to increase post-secondary education access and affordability to students everywhere.

By Orv Kimbrough

Originally posted at www.helpingpeople.org.

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