By Angel Lizardi |Staff Writer|
Statistics show that 60 percent of graduating seniors at CSUSB are borrowing money for their education, which is 10 percent higher than the state average, according to college-insight.org.
College-insight.org shows that 61 percent of CSUSB students graduate with student loan debt, which is 10 percent above the state average.
College Insight is an initiative of the institute of College Access and Success which provides data to colleges and universities across the country on college affordability, success and diversity.
Although the data shows that CSUSB students’ average student loan debt has decreased by $3,000, students have been taking out more student loans to fulfill their financial needs.
When hearing the news, some students weren’t surprised.
“There are a lot of first-time college students at this university, so I’m not really surprised,” said Victor Reyes, a fourth year student.
Reyes said he took out loans because he wanted to live in the dorms.
Students mentioned that they had to take out loans because either they made too much money or their parents made too much.
Student Julia Benjamin explained that they immediately cut her grants when she started working.
“Although I started working, the money that I was bringing in was not equivalent to how much I was going to spend on classes so I had no choice but to take out student loans,” said Benjamin.
Student Vanessa Alavarez, mentioned that her Student Aid Report (SAR) said that her parents were able to pay for her education, but she still has to take loans.
“I felt that the Financial Aid application was a bit too vague to fill out,” said Alvarez.
A multitude of students mentioned that although their grants covered their first two years at the university, as soon as they started working the financial aid they were receiving was student loans.
However, many felt that student loans weren’t as bad as they’re made out to be.
Student Daniel Danderand said that by students receiving student loans, it gives those students an opportunity that they wouldn’t have been able to get.
“Students from lower socio-economic areas or first-time college students are able to receive higher education because of student loans,” said Danderand.
Student Lily Castro said that she views her student loans as an investment in her life.
“We borrow money that we don’t have, so that in the future we will have a job that will allow us to pay back our student loans,” said Castro.
“I plan on attending grad school as well which means there will be even more student loan debt in my future; yet I remain hopeful that I’ll find I job that I’m passionate about and will be able to pay them off,” continued Castro.
Students seem optimistic about their student loans, but unsure if the investment would result in them finding jobs.