Local students prepare for high price of higher education

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Debt has become an accepted side effect of higher education. That topic was on the mind of many future college students as they attended Rock Valley College’s College Night. But, some attending students say the education is worth the expense.

The financial crisis that keeps on growing. Millions of college students fill campuses each year but not without that hefty price tag. According to Make Lemonade, there are more than 44 million borrowers who have some type of debt. Students say the price for a higher education makes them uneasy.

“I feel like it should be at a lower cost,” said College Night attendee Tatiana Mendez. “We shouldn’t have millions of people in debt just because they want to go to college, because they want to pursue an education.”

The class of 2017 graduated with an average debt of around $39,400.

The class of 2016 with around $37,100.

Some students hope to avoid the financial burden by applying for multiple scholarships.

“The idea of being in debt when you’re 20 doesn’t sound the most appealing,” said attendee Emily Ross. “Being able to buy a house in the future and have to worry less in your future about having to pay off college loans.”

Collectively, Americans alone owe $1.5 trillion in student loan debt.

Mendez understands she may be adding to that total one day. But, says if you continue to work hard after graduation — it’ll be a worthwhile investment.

“Your future job, with that masters or bachelors, you will quickly pay off your student loans,” said Mendez. “It’ll be worth it in the end.”

Rock Valley College coordinator of outreach & scholarships David Anderzon says students must be aware of what they’re signing up for when they take out loans.

“A student loan is exactly that, a student loan,” explained Anderzon. “It must be repaid. If you have a mortgage or a car loan, things like that must be repaid. Everything you’ve done to get the loan, to get that education, but then you fail on payment, it’ll be very difficult for you financially down the line.”

Edward Jones will be hosting a presentation called ‘College: Getting There from Here’ on Saturday, October 13. The event will take place at Forest City Corporate Center – 4949 Harrison Ave 2nd Floor Training Room at 10 a.m.

The schedule for the 2 part workshop:
10AM Brooke Henderson, Goodwill, presents filling out FAFSA
11AM College planning

There is no charge to attend this seminar, but reservations are required, so please phone Kathy Collins at 815-397-5157 to reserve your seat.

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