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Student debt tops $1 trillion

By Courtney Robishaw
On May 5, 2011


This year student loan debt will now top $1 trillion and for the second year in a row top credit card debit, according to Rich Williams, Higher Education Advocate for U.S. PIRG, a non-profit, non-partisan public interest advocacy organization.

The increasing amounts of financial aid are becoming more and more of a problem for college graduates. 

 The average debt of a graduating student about ten years ago was $12,000 and only one-third of students had to borrow money to attend college. Now over two-thirds of students have to borrow money for college, and the average debt is almost $25,000, according to Williams.  

 However, Congress is currently considering a cut to financial aid, which would increase this issue even more. 

Congress wants to cut Pell Grant aid, which currently helps subsidize over 9 million college students' educations.

"The Grant covered 72 percent of the average cost of attending a public four-year college in 1976, but only 32 percent of this cost in 2008, the lowest share in history," said Williams in a statement. 

U.S. PIRG believes Congress should actually increase Pell Grant aid or at least allow it to remain the same to help subsidize the increasing costs of education. 

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