Earlier in the week I wrote to you about the plight of recent college graduates, and the uphill battle they face in this bleak job market. Today I voted for, and the House passed, the Interest Rate Reduction Act to help keep student loan interest rates from doubling and adding even more pressure on young students.
With the interest rates on all new federally subsidized undergraduate student Stafford loans set to double from 3.4% to 6.8% on July 1, the House passed this legislation that will extend the current 3.4% rate for another year. According to recent numbers, an estimated 50% of all undergraduates are either unemployed or underemployed. With the economy continuing to struggle under the current administration and college tuition costs skyrocketing, this bill will help ease the burden for our recent college graduates.
The last thing that our hard working students need is higher interest rates on their educational loans. This would be unfair, and it would be bad public policy to make already overburdened students pay more for their education. Being a former teacher, I know the importance of a good education but I also know that students struggle when they get out of college due to the anemic job market.
As legislators, we must do everything within our power to assure that our students thrive and one way of achieving this is through lower interest rates on their student loans. This is the right thing to do and while this reprieve is only for a year, I am hopeful that the Congress will work hard to find a permanent solution.
Member of Congress