Feb 05, 2013 Quinn Thomas
Americans are attending college and graduate school at unprecedented rates, and with tuition prices rising, many are turning toward short term lenders to finance their studies.
"If I didn't have these loans, I wouldn't have made it through undergrad," Ryan Bennett, a current graduate student at Florida State University, recently told the FSView. "I wouldn't have even been able to come to graduate school because my tuition - there's no way I would have been able to pay it off."
In the United States, college students and families accumulated more than $1 trillion in student loans last year, surpassing American credit card spending. According to the FSView, student loan borrowing now accounts for approximately 35 percent of the federal government's debt.
A recent study by FICO Labs revealed that average student loan debt in the U.S. has jumped from $17,233 in 2005 to more than $27,000 in 2012, marking a 58 percent increase. In addition, student loan delinquency rates have grown 22 percent during that same time frame, to 15.1 percent.
Rising college attendance and tuition have contributed to those increases, along with the growing need to attend graduate school. A separate report by HigherEdge Marketing Services found that more than 40 percent of jobs now require either a Master's or Doctorate degree.