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Rochester, N.Y. - Annalise Baird is about to finish her undergraduate studies at the University of Rochester.
Baird has plans to go to graduate school, but those plans may be put on hold if Congress doesn't act in time to keep the current student loan rates.
"That would definitely push back my plans because nobody wants to go to grad school with huge amounts of debt looming and having to take on even more on top of that," Baird said.
The current rate of 3.4% was set to expire last year, but Congress voted to extend those rates through this year.
If Congress doesn't act by July 1, student loan rates will jump to 6.8%, adding almost an extra $4,000 per student over ten years.
The thought of taking out another loan at an even higher rate is not the vision of higher learning Baird expected.
"I can't even imagine being able to pay off what I have right now with interest
rates," Baird said. "I have no idea how I'll pay that if that doubles or increases at all."
That's the reason New York Senator Chuck Schumer said he sponsored a bill to prevent loan rates from doubling.
Senator Schumer said locking in a low interest rate is an investment not only in students' future but the future of the economy.
"College educated students earn more each year of their lives than those who aren't. So anyone who deserves to go to college and has the grades to go to college, should be able to and a financial barrier shouldn't stand in the way," Schumer said.
Schumer said he'd like to see the loan extension made permanent for college students.