Over the past decade, student loan debt has skyrocketed nationwide. In the Tar Heel state it’s a similar story with more than one million residents struggling to repay billions of dollars in college loans. Among those particularly affected: communities of color, rural and low-income communities, veterans, women, and older Americans.
A new study by the Center for Responsible Lending shines new light on this crisis. This week’s Monday numbers column is based on that research: North Carolina’s Student Debt: Dimensions of a Crisis.
44 million – The number of Americans burdened by student loan debt
$1.5 trillion – The amount of student loan debt Americans owe
1.2 million – The number of North Carolinians carrying debt from their student loans
$44 billion – The amount of student loan debt North Carolinians owe
2nd – North Carolina’s national ranking in the growth of its student loan debt between 2008 and 2018.
57 – The percentage of North Carolina’s 2017 bachelor’s degree recipients at public and private nonprofit colleges who graduated with federal student loan debt
$26,526 – The average amount of student loan debt owed by 2017 bachelor’s degree recipients
$17,267 – The median debt for the youngest group of North Carolina’s student loan borrowers (ages 18–34)
$11,114 – The median debt for the same group in 2005
68 – The percentage of North Carolina students borrowing $26,500 or more for their undergraduate degree who were women (Source: National Center for Education Statistics. 2015–16 National Postsecondary Student Aid Study)
31.9 – The percentage of North Carolina students borrowing $26,500 or more for their undergraduate degree who were men(Ibid)
16.5 – The percentage of student loan borrowers in North Carolina who are in “severe delinquency,” having made no payments on their loans for 90 days or more
22.2 – The percentage of low-income student loan borrowers who are in severe delinquency
18.6 – The percentage drop in per-public-college-student funding appropriated by the North Carolina General Assembly between 2008 and 2018, when adjusted for inflation
45 – The percentage by which the average inflation-adjusted, in-state tuition at public, four-year colleges in North Carolina rose between 2008 and 2018.
For more on North Carolina’s student loan debt crisis, listen to our recent interview with Lisa Stifler, Deputy Director of State Policy for the Center of Responsible Lending.