ADRIAN (WWJ/AP) – Adrian College plans to offer a new loan repayment program that will pay all or part of students’ loans if they are unable to secure a well-paying job after graduation.
AdrianPlus will begin with next year’s freshman class, as well as first- or second-year transfer students, the school said. The private Michigan school promises payments if students earn less than $37,000 annually.
“It has become increasingly clear that money and student debt are major hurdles for parents and students to get over as they consider higher education,” school President Jeffrey Docking told the Detroit Free Press. “Especially when it comes to a small, private college like Adrian. They are scared away by the sticker price.”
The program is the latest in a string of efforts being launched by colleges and universities nationwide to address rising levels of student debt.
There is no time limit for the payment plan to run out, but Adrian College plans to cap total loan payments at $70,000 per student. It costs about $39,500 a year to go to the school, about 60 miles southwest of Detroit. The average student pays around $20,000 when financial aid is factored into the cost.
In Michigan, the average student loan debt is about $27,000 per student, and more than 60 percent of all Michigan graduates leave college with student loan debt.
Under the program, for graduates who get a job that pays less than $20,000 a year, the college will make the complete monthly student loan payment until the individual makes more than $37,000 a year. With a job that pays between $20,000 and $37,000, the college will make payments on a sliding scale.
If students go directly to graduate school, the program kicks in once they leave graduate school.
To qualify for the program, students must be enrolled full-time and make satisfactory academic progress toward a degree, said Frank Hribar, vice president for enrollment. Hribar said, however, that the school doesn’t believe many students will need the program.
About one-third of Adrian’s average graduating class of roughly 350 go directly to graduate school. About 90 percent are hired in their field of study, Hribar said.
To learn more about Adrian College and their loan programs, visit www.adrian.edu/AdrianPlus.
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