A new president means new reforms and policies. One of the most talked about reforms that may impact college students today is the potential change to financial aid and student loan forgiveness.
The U.S News confirms that President Trump has addressed making college more affordable by easing the burden of student loan. However, college graduate’s debt has held steady around $37,000.
Those with current student loans might see a drastic change in the way they are required to pay off their debt.Trump has proposed making borrowers pay 12.5 percent of their discretionary income with a 15-year payment plan before being eligible for loan forgiveness.
However, Mike Williams, a representative for the Student Loan Forgiveness Program says graduates taking advantage of student loan forgiveness programs before the proposed reform should not be affected.
“The possible reforms shouldn’t impact anything. Most programs you are grandfathered into that program and nobody can pull you out of it,” said Williams.
Yet some former students are worried about the possible changes.
“I am a single mom who is barely making it and I am still trying to pay off my student loans,” said Natalie Ballif, a graduate of Salt Lake Community College. “The proposed reforms will take income that I don’t necessarily have.”
Earlier last year Ballif contemplated going for an additional undergraduate degree. Now she has decided not to pursue more education because of the speculation of future reforms.
Students contemplating further loans might have concerns, but Madison Browning, a representative from Earnest, a student loan company, thinks the changes could be positive.
“The new reform shouldn’t impact any of our student loans. It should stay the same,” she said. “A lot of refinancing of loans is what we do, and the new Trump bill shouldn’t affect any student who is seeking to refinance. The reform should actually help you pay the loan off faster with little interest.”
Jed Spencer, Weber State’s Financial Aid director, is not worried about the government shutdown and its budgetary outcome.
“The shutdown that happened earlier this week will have no effect on anyone,” he said. “It’s happened 13 times in the past year. It won’t impact students because it is funded a year in advance.”
Spencer said nothing official has been published concerning future Trump reforms, and with all of the debate surrounding the issue everything is just speculation at this point.