‘I think it’s a good start’: FAU students look forward to Biden’s loan forgiveness program

President Joe Biden’s student debt forgiveness plan offers FAU students with $20,000 in student debt relief.


Nicholas Windfelder

Photo of students walking in the Breezeway.

Samantha Sheradsky, Staff Writer

On Aug. 24, President Joe Biden established and approved a three-part plan which grants a cancellation of $20,000 toward student loan debt — and FAU students look forward to reaping the benefits.

The White House made a statement that individual borrowers are eligible for this relief if they make less than $125,000 per year.

This plan will provide $20,000 to Pell Grant recipients with loans that the Department of Education (DOE) holds. There will also be a debt cancellation of $10,000 to non-Pell Grant recipients.

According to DOE, 34% of FAU’s undergraduate students take out loans with a median of $17,500 after graduating.

A few FAU students have spoken out about how this plan will affect their quality of education.

Freshman Anna Hoffman pays out of state tuition and believes students should receive more relief through the program. However, she says the program is better than nothing.

“I think without it, it would screw a lot of people over because college is so expensive,” Hoffman said. “This might encourage more [students] to go to college.”

Madison Reith, a senior communication major, was “unsure” about the program as she had no knowledge about it. She said she is dependent on her parents for helping with her tuition.

“My parents were paying $17,000 of my out-of-state tuition during my first two years at FAU. It will help, but it won’t cover it,” Reith said.

Robert Mullay, a senior majoring in English, is part of Florida Prepaid, which allows families to plan on paying the future cost of a college student’s tuition.

Mullay shared his own thoughts on this project.

“I think it’s a good start because people are trying to further themselves with education,” Mullay said. “I think this loan forgiveness gives people a chance to succeed once they’ve graduated college.”

On Aug. 18, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis spoke to a national audience about the plan and stated that it is a “political disaster.”

“I just don’t think it sits well with the vast majority of people in this country,” DeSantis said.

The White House reported that the typical undergraduate student has about $25,000 of student loans, even after they graduate. 

One-third of borrowers, however, are students who do not have a degree and are still struggling with student debt.

“The White House and the Department of Education have not yet released the fine print for these programs and frankly, we have as many questions as we do answers right now,” said Doctors Without Quarters Director and co-Founder Brandon Barfield. 

Undergraduate students who have not completed their degree struggle with student debt due to the rising cost of education. Some individuals believe some legislative student loan initiatives contribute towards that factor. 

“The more that things cost, the more debt [students] have to borrow to cover those costs,” said Barfield. 

Samantha Sheradsky is a staff writer for the University Press. For more information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or DM her on Twitter @samtheham132.