In the past year, many high school graduates have dramatically changed their expectations for the future.
This year more students are back on track.
Almost two-thirds of parents, or 63%, said their children’s plans after high school returned to what they were before the global pandemic, according to a report by Discover Student Loans.
Of those who have changed their college plans, most said they will now attend a school near where they live, go to an online university, or go to a cheaper location.
Discover 1,000 college student parents surveyed in May.
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As Covid stalled the economy, a quarter of last year’s high school graduates delayed their college plans, according to a separate survey by Junior Achievement and Citizens, largely because their parents or guardians were less able to provide financial assistance.
Even today, cost is a major concern. Although about 40% of parents said their ability to co-finance has improved since that time last year, 63% remain concerned they have enough money to go to college, Discover found.
College affordability and dealing with the debt burden that often comes with a degree are the top concerns of parents and students, The Princeton Review also found in its 2021 College Hopes & Worries survey.
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Now the price is only rising.
Average tuition and fees for the 2020-21 academic year rose 1.1% to $ 10,560 for in-state students at public four-year colleges, according to the College Board, which tracks trends in college prices and grants. The data also showed that tuition and fees at private 4-year institutions rose 2.1% to $ 37,650.
Most college students need to borrow to cover the cost, which has driven the total US student loan debt to over $ 1.7 trillion.
According to a recent NerdWallet analysis of data from the National Center for Education Statistics, a high school senior could take out as much as $ 38,147 in student loans on average in 2021. That’s $ 37,200 for high school graduates in 2020.
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