Addressing the student debt crisis

January 9, 2020

map of the Northeastern United States showing average student debt amount

Across the nation, the student debt crisis has reached staggering proportions.

A 2018 analysis by the Brookings Institution suggests that nearly 40 percent of student borrowers are at risk of defaulting on their loans by 2023.

Student loan debt is “a constant stress in the lives of our constituents. It is an issue that cuts across demographic and geographic lines,” said Delaware State Senator Ernesto Lopez, chair of the CSG/ERC Education Committee.

As of the second quarter of 2019, national student loan debt stood at $1.48 trillion, with 10.8 percent of that debt more than 90 days delinquent or in default, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The average student loan debt for borrowers in the ERC states was $33,340, above the national average of $28,523, data from the first quarter of 2019 shows.

Lopez cited the need for new student borrower funding formulas that are “equitable and fair.” During the course of 2020, Lopez said, the committee would be “engaged and active in sharing meaningful policy improvements” as states explore innovative solutions to the student debt crisis.

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