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Ferris State University React to New Federal Loan Forgiveness Program

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As President Joe Biden to forgive thousands in student loan debt for millions of Americans, local college students are wondering how this plan will affect their own student loans.

“There’s a tremendous impact on young people that have a burden of student loan debt,” said Ferris State University Financial Aid Assistant Director Melanie Mulder. “This step will definitely relieve some of those individuals.”

Mulder says most of their students utilize some sort of financial aid to help pay for college.

“With 86% of our students receiving some form of financial aid, it’s the path that allows a student to get that secondary education,” she said.

With this new announcement about student loan forgiveness, it may affect more than half of the student population at FSU.

Amya Watkins is a sophomore at FSU, and says she has $12,000 of student loans.

“I’ve been paying for college out of pocket,” Watkins said. “I know a lot of people that had to drop out of college because they’ve exceeded loans or they just can’t pay it back. It really gives a lot of people an opportunity to go back to school, continue their education.”

But with the information released on Wednesday, Mulder says there are still a lot of details that need to be expanded on in the coming months.

“From the press release that’s come out so far, it says ‘for current students that have debt’, so we don’t know how to interpret that,” she said. “We don’t know if that’s just upperclassmen that are returning from prior years, or if it will impact freshmen that are beginning classes on Monday.”

Regardless, the office says they’ll keep on top of those details for current and former students.

Students, however, are excited for some type of financial relief.

“I really hope they kind of take a look into it and see how hard it is for middle class even lower class people to actually pay for college,” Watkins said. “College is optional, it’s not mandatory, but for the ones that do want to go, it is extremely hard, just for living on your own or getting gas, gas is high. This really relieves a lot of expenses on everybody else’s part around campus.”

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