Major Decisions: What Graduates Earn Over Their Lifetimes

from Brookings In late 2014, The Hamilton Project released two economic analyses and interactives on the earnings of college graduates by major: one set that showed career earnings profiles and lifetime earnings and another that showed an undergraduate student loan repayment calculator. Both were—and still are—very popular because they provide useful and actionable information to college students who are trying to make choices that will affect them for years. To remain useful, these data needed a refresh. We have updated the data in both interactives to use earnings from 2014-18, and we have also expanded the number of majors available […]

Continue reading

The Next Model of Student Loans

from Medium The inflation levels of student loans can be crippling to social mobility, just ask young people who graduate with $50,000 or more in student loan debt. While job uncertainty increases with rising automation, what about students staring down the barrel of six-digit loan obligations yet to come? The student debt crisis could have long-term impacts on the U.S. economy. Yet we rarely think about alternatives to the status-quo of dangerous inflation. What happens when student debt actually lowers the fertility rate? What happens to consumerism and an inverted population pyramid and a labor market that can no longer provide […]

Continue reading

6 Tips for Avoiding the Worst Student Loan Repayment Traps

from NYTs Whether or not you believe the allegations, the jaw-dropping dossier of sins that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau accuses the nation’s largest student loan servicer of committing is useful for two crucial reasons. First, it’s a reminder of just how much can go wrong when we force inexperienced young adults, especially, to navigate a complex financial services offering. We shouldn’t be surprised, but we should be ashamed: Elected representatives cut support for higher education; sticker prices rose; teenagers and others applied for admission, signed up for debt and, in many cases, finished their degrees. Then came the bombardment of […]

Continue reading

What Does Cutting Rates On Student Loans Do?

from Brookings Are lower interest rates the best route to a fairer, more effective student loan program? From the rhetoric heard in Congress and on the campaign trail, the answer appears to be “yes.” But both empirical evidence and economic theory show that lowering interest rates is a blunt, ineffective, and expensive tool for increasing schooling and reducing loan defaults. There are much better ways to achieve these important goals. Let’s step back and consider why government lends to students in the first place. Education is an investment: it creates costs in the present but delivers benefits in the future. […]

Continue reading

A Student Loan System Stacked Against the Borrower

from NYTs “It feels like I’m being set up to fail.” That’s how Patrick Wittwer, 31, described his experience trying to repay his roughly $50,000 in student loans. Between misdirected payments by one of the companies servicing his loan and the abusive collection tactics he encountered when he fell behind, Mr. Wittwer said the repayment process simply seemed stacked against him. A 2008 graduate of Temple University with a degree in media arts, Mr. Wittwer is not alone in his experience. Consumer advocates say student-loan servicers often make an already heavy debt load even more burdensome for borrowers. A report issued late […]

Continue reading