Report: Women Hold Two-Thirds of All Student Debt

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Women hold more student debt and take longer than men to pay it off, according to a recent report from the American Association of University Women.

“It’s encouraging that women are enrolling in college more than ever before, but at the same time they are taking on larger amounts of debt to pay for their dreams,” AAUW researcher Kevin Miller said in a press release. “Because of factors like the gender pay gap, debt that could be manageable ends up becoming unmanageable, particularly for women.”

Women now earn 57 percent of all bachelor’s degrees awarded by US colleges, but hold almost two-thirds of the country’s $1.3 trillion student debt.

On average, women take two years longer than men to pay off their student debt, according the AAUW estimates. Black women take on the most debt and “ultimately struggle the most to pay it off,” according to the AAUW report.

“This isn’t just a student problem, it’s a gender inequity problem and it impacts us all,” said AAUW’s Senior Government Relations Manager Anne Hedgepeth. “As a nation, we rely on women to add to and strengthen our economy. That can’t happen under mountains of student debt.”

Read the full report.

Admitted writer/editor Mary Stegmeir welcomes additional comments and story ideas at mstegmeir@nacacnet.org.

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