EdMedia Commons Archive

Sounding Off on Student Loan News

Just in time to distract college students from the horrors of midterm exams, President Obama has announced an initiative to ease their fears about paying back their student loan debts. The income-based plan caps the amount of money borrowers would have to pay back each month so that it wouldn’t exceed 10 percent of their discretionary income, among other changes. The Washington Post’s personal finance columnist makes the worthwhile point that Obama’s recent move is not-so-much a new initiative but rather an expansion of a policy already in place.

Obama’s move adds to the flurry of financial aid news out this week, including the College Board’s annual tuition and financial aid reports. Over at Salon, there’s an interesting look at a provision already in the federal student loan code that arguably could enable creditors to collect money from debtor’s Social Security payments, assuming that students haven’t paid in full before retiring (and that Social Security as we currently know it is still around in a couple of decades).

For higher ed reporters, is there any regular part of the beat that grabs readers any better than student loan debt and the question of whether a degree is worth the cost? Probably not. And yet it’s a difficult one to tackle because the return on investment will vary wildly for each student on campus, particularly now when unemployment hover around nine percent. What are some of the ways you’ve covered the topics of student loans and student debt on the campuses you cover?

This post originally appeared on EWA’s now-defunct online community, EdMedia Commons. Old content from EMC will appear in the Ed Beat archives.