State senator's program attempts to ease student debt

Stefanie Botelho's picture

A Pennsylvania lawmaker is asking colleagues to consider a program aimed at easing the debt load of some students in technical fields while keeping them in the state.

Pennsylvania's students are currently the third-most indebted in the country, according to the Project on Student Debt, a nonprofit that tracks student borrowing. Among 2012 graduates, 70 percent had taken out loans, owing an average of $31,675.

Many can't -- or don't -- pay. According to the U.S. Department of Education, about 11.9 percent of Pennsylvania students default on federal student loan payments within three years.

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