It is no secret college is getting more expensive every year. With student debt hitting higher levels, it is easy for college students to feel as if they are under a mountain of debt that will take years to pay off.
America Saves Week has tried to raise awareness among college students and those fresh out of college about the loan process and saving money for retirement since 2007. This year, the Department of Labor held a webinar about student loans and how to use credit wisely.
“The sooner you start saving, the longer your savings will grow,” Department of Labor member Patricia Humphlett said.
Humphlett highlighted the importance of saving as early as possible for retirement. For many college students, having to pay off loans after college is a horrifying thought.
“Absolutely,” junior mechanical engineer major John McGroarty said when asked if he was anxious about paying off loans. “Those types of loans can haunt you forever.”
The average college senior, according to the speaker Mjiba Frehiwot, averages about $24,000 to $26,000 when they leave school. When this far into debt, it is very attractive for students to use credit to make ends meat.
According to Frehiwot, half of the income is spent paying off debt. Keeping your credit score high could increase your chances of being hired by prospective employers.
“Nearly half of all prospective employers look at credit score to decide eligibility,” Frehiwot said.
But some believe this is an ineffective approach in gauging the job market.
“Basing employment on credit score, in my opinion, does not gauge your ability at all — only your financial capability to budget successfully,” sophomore history major Robert Wesner said.
While the webinar assisted in teaching students the ins and outs of the credit and loan system, its implications on their post-graudate careers are just as daunting.