Students seek to stop loan interest rate hike

Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., and Rep. Joe Courtney, D-Conn., who spoke at the press conference, said it doesn’t make sense for student loan recipients to face a higher interest rate than homeowners are getting on mortgages or that banks are able to get.

The two back legislation that would keep the lower rate, but both acknowledged that in the political climate, it will be challenging to get the legislation passed by the July deadline.

The college students said they worry constantly about the debt they are taking on, and that the few thousand extra dollars they’d take on in new loans if the rate doubled would affect life decisions.

Samantha Durdock, 19, a sophomore studying government and politics at the University of Maryland, said she wants to go to graduate school after college so that she can pursue a career related to international affairs, but she thinks she won’t be able to go immediately with the additional amount she’d likely owe.

She said she already expects to graduate owing at least more than $20,000.

“Right now, if the loans stay how it is, it’s going to be tight, but I could make it doing five years straight in school. But with the increase I’d probably have to take off,” Durdock said.

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