Congress reaches deal on student loans; rates won't increase

7:41 AM, Jun 27, 2012   |    comments
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Blayne Alexander Log for June 26, 2012

ATLANTA -- More than seven million college students can breathe a little easier now.

According to the Washington Post, Congress has finally reached a deal to prevent federal student loan rates from increasing. Without a congressional deal, current interest rates for Stafford student loans would have doubled on July 1 from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. That would have amounted to nearly $1,000 per student.

As schools waited weeks for Congress to strike a deal, Clark Atlanta University Provost and Vice-President of Student Affairs Dr. Joseph Silver said the nation's historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) would have been hit hard by the increase, as their students rely heavily on student loans to pay for school.

"One of the biggest reasons that students leave this institution - it has nothing to do with students not being able to do the work," he said. "It has nothing to do with their dislike for the institution."

"Our research shows that the majority of our students leave because of their inability to pay," Silver said.

The Washington Post reports that while both Republicans and Democrats agree they have reached a deal, they've not settled on any of the details, including how to pay for the $6 billion difference.

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