Educational opportunities for young people are key to rising wages for all. Yet nationwide, the burden of more than $1.2 trillion of outstanding student debt undermines our economy while stifling the economic prospects of a whole generation.
The average college student in our state will graduate with $36,367 in debt. For some, a fourth of their salaries goes to cover their monthly repayments. This has already forced graduates to delay buying a house and having children of their own.
For years, New Hampshire’s college graduates have had the highest student debt burden in the nation. It’s time to change. We need to rein in the loan profiteers and for-profit colleges that take advantage of young people. We need a public college education that is affordable and moves us towards free education at public universities. This would open up opportunities for thousands of people and relieve the crushing burden college debt has caused for too many of our citizens.
I will fight for these steps to make college debt free:
- Make tuition free at public college and universities, a standard in most Western democracies.
- Stop the federal government from making a profit off student loans.
- Substantially cut student loan interest rates. We should not allow big banks to grow rich off of mortgaging our children’s futures.
- Allow graduates to refinance their student loans at today’s low interest rates. If you can get an auto loan today with an interest rate of 2.5%, why should millions of graduates be forced to pay interest rates of 5 to 7% or more for decades?
Ten years ago, Wall Street speculators pushed our economy to the brink of collapse. We can end student debt by imposing a miniscule tax on those responsible for the Great Recession. If we could bail out Wall Street in 2008, we can make public colleges and universities free for our college graduates.