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  • Is there no solution to the American student debt crisis?
  • Posted By:
  • Kathy H
  • Posted On:
  • 16-Aug-2012
  • Browse through online or offline newspapers and magazines and you will come across many stories of students drowned in loan debts. Students from all walks of life and of all age groups are stuck with huge debts they are unable to pay off. Millions of citizens in our country, saddled with these debts are unable to start a business, buy their dream home or even start a family. They are certainly unable to reach out to the elusive American dream.

    There has been a 900% increase in college tuition since the year 1978 even as scholarships and grants continued to be slashed. As a result of this, students are forced to take huge loans. In 2010, student loan debt surpassed the credit card debt and stood at $1 trillion as our country’s second largest consumer debt.

    The only people benefiting from this trend are the lenders. Sallie Mae is one of the largest student loan lenders in our country. This company makes sure through various measures that student loans are least protected and has lobbied extensively to make sure that student-friendly Pell Grants are destroyed.

    This company recently announced shareholder dividend reaping a fortune off poor students who want nothing other than access to a better life through higher education. Higher education today is facing budget cuts from all angles and lenders are filling up their coffers. Our policy makers are just standing by refusing to address this huge problem.

    Of course, our leaders are benefiting in their own way. Millions of dollars are showered on them by student loan lenders, not to mention the corporate jet rides and campaign cash donation from the lending industry.

    Through its own collection agency, Sallie Mae charges defaulters 25% of the total amount owed that includes the interest. By refusing to work with borrowers to find a reasonable repayment solution, lenders ensure their own best interest through students default.

    Our leaders in Washington have a duty towards students. Students saddled with huge loan debts have the right to demand something better from them. They deserve respite from a lifelong misery. Need of the hour is leaders who are willing to work for the people and represent their will.

    They must strive to push for grant increase, restore basic consumer protections, forgive a certain amount of student loan debt and help struggling borrowers by enacting repayment plans that are based on common sense solutions. 

    Many families are suffering due to the heavy burden of student loan they have to carry. Students themselves are not sure about getting a well-paying job after they complete college. Congress’s complacency towards this issue can be categorized under dereliction of duty and categorical disgrace.

    There seems to be no end to this problem any time soon. It is up to the common man to wrest back power from those who are power-hungry and continue to rig the game. The game must be changed on a war footing if we have to bring about a positive action.


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