Emerging Trend: Employers and Student Loan Relief Programs

Employers are now offering student loan relief programs to their employees

Pexels user Andrew Nolan

In today’s day and age, student loan rates are climbing quickly. Therefore, it’s very important to have a plan to repay your debts once you graduate. There are so many different ways to acquire a loan nowadays. Whether it’s federal or private loans, variable or fixed interest rates, a large amount of students are getting loans. But, all of them have one thing in common: you need a concrete plan to pay them back. Luckily for millennials going out into the workforce, it seems that a rising number of employers are offering student loan relief programs, in some form, to their new employees.

Student Loan Relief Programs

 According to the Society for Human Resource Management, 3% of employers are giving their employees some form of student debt relief, including companies like PricewaterhouseCoopers and Fidelity Investments. This percentage may seem low (and it is), but it’s definitely a start. It’s better than the situation years ago where this perk simply didn’t exist. Any amount of debt you can shave off is good.

Student Loan Debt and Statistics

American Student Assistant (ASA) conducted a survey (entitled “Life Delayed: the Impact of Student Debt in the Daily Lives of Young Americans“) in which 76 percent of respondents agreed ” that, all other things being equal, if an employer offered assistance with student loan repayment, it would be the deciding factor or have considerable impact on their choice to take that job.” That is not a small percentage. It’s clear that students have spoken. The idea of help with student loans is a major factor when getting a job. In this way, student loan relief can be a boon to both sides. Students get financial help and companies gain the best and brightest young people to invigorate their corporate blood.

According to recent statistics, the average 2016 college graduate owes over $37,000 in student loan debt. For comparison, the average income of someone who lists themselves as “single” on their taxes is around $35,000. In 2013, the average starting salary of a teacher was $36,000. Simply put, that’s a lot of money to owe anyone. Now imagine trying to afford a modern lifestyle while having that debt. Companies who also offer a repayment program for student loans, lift this tremendous burden from their employees’ shoulders, even if it’s just a little bit.

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Why These Programs Work

Many studies confirm that employees who describe themselves as “happy” in their job are more productive than their counterparts. Companies provide student loan relief. In return, companies gain young and eager workers with guaranteed productivity in their chosen field through the virtue of the generous loan relief offered. It’s a trade-off that benefits both parties. With the rising number of companies offering similar programs, we will surely be seeing this theory work itself out in the future. Hopefully, more companies will adopt student loan relief programs, so that future students aren’t as burdened.

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