Northern Iowan

Students face financial woes


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For students trying to gain a higher education, the goal can be difficult to achieve, due to a national increase in student debt every year. On average, undergraduate students borrow a total of $23,151 while attending UNI, as of 2013. However, UNI students aren’t graduating with as much debt as students from other Iowa colleges. At the end of the 2011-12 academic year, Iowa State University students graduated with an average debt of $29,573 and University of Iowa students graduated with a debt of $26,296, according to the Iowa Board of Regents Annual Financial Aid Report.

“My best advice would be to live like a student now so you don’t have to later,” said Tim Bakula, associate director of Financial Aid.

For students who are worried about being in debt long after graduation, Bakula recommends looking at payment plans offered by loan distributers and choosing one that best fits their needs.

But debt can be a problem even before graduation.

Out of 62 dropout first-year students surveyed for a report by the Office of the Registrar, 16 said they dropped out to transfer to a lower-cost institution. Five people said they didn’t have enough money to continue their education at UNI.

Additionally, credit cards can cause issues for college students. Students are one of the main prospects for credit card companies and, according to the Indianapolis Recorder, about 80 percent of college students have at least one credit card. Credit cards can cause problems because students can purchase items that they can’t afford.

Students should also keep in mind that, on average, college tuition increases about 8 percent every year, according to

Any UNI students concerned about paying for college are encouraged to visit the Office of Student Financial Aid at 105 Gilchrist Hall, call them at 319-273-6950, or email them at [email protected]

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Students face financial woes