President-Elect Trump Has Some Ideas on Your Student Loans
President-elect Trump said repeatedly on the campaign trail that he wants to “solve the student loan crisis” and “making America great again” but from what we’ve seen so far (which is quite little when it comes to actual policy) his statements and ideas will only hurt student borrowers even more.
We’ve gathered clues from Donald Trump’s 18-month presidential campaign to give you a snapshot of what we might be in for.
- President-elect Trump thinks that the Department of Education could “largely be eliminated.”
- This is a big deal. If Donald Trump succeeds in abolishing the DOE, students would lose a major ally institution that is designed to help them with affording college and holding higher-education institutions to standards that ensure your tuition dollars are going towards your education. This would also leave open the question of what would be done with the $28 billion in Pell Grants that the DOE administers for those who need the most help affording college.
- President-elect Trump wants to allow private banks to issue more federal student loans.
- This has been done before. Private banks used to be able to issue federally backed loans until 2010 when the Obama administration realized we could save billions of dollars by making all student loans originate through the DOE’s Direct Loan Program. The billions in dollars in savings were used to offer more Pell Grants to low-income students. Why should we go back to letting private banks hold the purse strings on our student loans and interest rates?
- President-elect Trump has suggested that he wants to get rid of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program.
- Donald Trump has stated that he is in favor of combining all loan payment and forgiveness programs into a single Income Based Repayment Plan. Our public servants or those thinking about taking up public service professions upon graduation could lose their benefits for taking lower-paying jobs in order to serve our communities and government institutions. We’re predicting a major talent-drain (in the swamp and beyond) if that happens.
- President-elect Trump thinks colleges should have a say in how much money you get in loans based on your major.
- Currently, any student – regardless of their declared major – can borrow the same amount of federal student loans each year. President-elect Trump has suggested that colleges should decide how much each student can borrow because not all majors have the same level of “loan worthiness.” For example, students pursuing majors with high employment rates after graduation, such as engineering, might be approved to take on more student debt that those studying say, gender studies. Yeah, we’re cringing at the irony too.
If you’re feeling the same sense of dread that we are, write to President-elect Trump here and tell him why his “plan” would be bad for students.
Posted on 16 November 2016