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Graduates increasingly mired in debt

An editorial from the Christian Science Monitor, by way of The Mankato Free Press:

Adults often complain about mixed signals they get from teens, but what about the messages teens get? Here's one with major life implications: Go to college, but graduate with a load of debt. Oh yeah, like that makes getting a degree look real attractive.

The economic health of America's information-driven society depends on how well it educates its young people. So it can't afford to shrug off the mounting student-debt problem with a mere "whatever."

The financial situation facing college graduates today is not what it was in their parents' time. Now, about two-thirds of college students are borrowing; three decades ago, just a third were. And in recent years, the amount of student borrowing has soared. Graduating seniors faced an average of $9,250 in loans a decade ago. Now it's more than twice that, $19,200 (a 58 percent increase after inflation).

The majority of graduates are still able to repay their loans. And it's true that higher earning power for someone with a four-year degree makes this possible. But the trends point toward a worsening situation that needs attention.

Here's the rest of the article.