Student loan debt is also delaying things many people look forward to, like buying a home, investing, and even starting a family things that would also send a much needed jolt to the economy.
Folks here in Western Mass are also finding it harder to begin to tackle student loan debt. They’re digging themselves deeper by going to graduate school to even be considered for a job in the field where they got their undergraduate degree. “I go to social work school and there were jobs in that field that I wanted to get that I couldn’t get without an M.S.W. and I think that’s a piece of it. We’re in a society where you can’t go to a certain point without an education, and then that education has to come at a tremendous monetary cost to you,” Emma Roderick shared.
“There’s going to be a lot of it, I have no idea, really, how I’m going to pay it, as I intend to continue my education after the undergraduate level. I’m sure it will become a much more prevalent thought after I move out of the dorm and realize, crap, I have to live in an apartment now for a long, long time,” Mt. Holyoke College student Zoe Payne-Taylor said.
This puts Zoe’s parents in a tough position. “It’s kind of a sandwich situation. We have our retirement on one side, and continuing to help our daughter on the other side. So, you know, you have a convergence of things there that makes life a little more difficult,” Chris and Karen Payne-Taylor admitted.
Even with the squeeze, the Payne-Taylors say bankruptcy, which some people do consider to try an relieve student debt is not an option. The Department of Education says the student loan default rate has ballooned to almost 10%.