Students concerned about interest rates

YOUNGSTOWN

Cary Dabney is looking forward to entering graduate school at Youngstown State University, but dampening his enthusiasm is worry related to the financial aspect.

“This will create a hole we can never get out of,” Dabney said, referring to the prospect of thousands of students having to pay significantly more for college loans.

Dabney was one of several YSU students who offered testimony during a press conference Monday in YSU’s Kilcawley Center calling for the passage of the Stop the Student Loan Interest Rate Hike Act of 2012, co-sponsored by U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Avon, who also spoke at the gathering.

The legislation would block the 3.4 percent interest rate on federally subsidized Stafford loans from doubling to 6.8 percent by July 1, Brown explained.

The increase, however, would not apply to loans now in repayment or that already have been disbursed, but would affect students still in school after July 1 who need to take out new Stafford loans.

“Unless Congress acts, in less than three weeks approximately 10,000 students in the Mahoning Valley will be forced to pay more for their Stafford loans,” Brown said. “Already, recent college graduates are struggling to find work, with half of young college graduates jobless or underemployed.”

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