Student loans overtake credit card debt - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Student loans overtake credit card debt

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WAVERLY (KWWL) -

For the first time in history, student loans are set to over take credit card debit as the biggest financial burden in the United States. According to USA Today the amount of student loans taken out last year crossed the 100 billion dollar mark and total outstanding loans will exceed one trillion dollars by the end of the year.

If you talk to any Wartburg graduate, they will tell you their experience in college is worth every penny. However, people still in college have their eyes on the bottom line. With a college education costing around $160,000 for four years, fear is a common response for these students.

"Yeah it's very scary when you think of four years of all those loans it adds up quickly," said freshman, John Valen.

With the job market being extremely competitive some students worry if they will find a job after the graduate to pay back the loans.

"I could have gone to a community college and had it pretty much paid for and got a better sense, but I wanted to start the experience right away," said freshman, Michael Brown.

"My sister just graduated college and a lot of her friends had some trouble finding jobs," said sophomore, Jacqueline Schutte.

According to the College Board the average undergraduate student in the U.S. borrowed around $5,000 in 2010 that's up 63% from the decade before.

To help students cover the increasing cost of college, Wartburg makes sure to direct its students to all available scholarships.

"I did get a scholarship that helped pay for around one-third of tuition," said Valen.

"I think it would have been impossible for me to come here if I didn't have support from other organizations that are helping cover tuition cost," said junior, Christian Riquelme.

Experts say the sour economy is to blame for the increased debt. They say more people are taking out federal loans to retain themselves, hoping their new skills will help them find work.

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