Financial Literacy Survey to Include Over 900 Schools
San Diego, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 12/03/2013 -- With federal student loan defaults reaching levels not seen in two decades, iGrad, a leading online financial literacy resource, is asking college and university financial aid leaders what their students know about personal finance.
"Our 2013 Annual Financial Literacy Survey will identify what is currently being done to improve financial literacy education, as well as the biggest opportunities for improvement" says iGrad Vice President Kris Alban.
Among the information the survey will collect:
- How financial literacy education affects student loan borrowing, repayment and retention.
- Whether administrators believe undergraduates should be required to take financial literacy courses.
- What types of financial literacy counseling are provided, and how often.
“With the two-year default rate reaching 10 percent – and it is up for the sixth consecutive year - iGrad wants to provide every possible resource for administrators and students,” says Alban.
“Student defaults can ruin credit history, but the consequence for schools can be much worse. Ultimately, the institution’s reputation is at stake, along with the financial future of its students,” Alban adds. About 57 percent of four-year college graduates have debt, with the national average approaching $27,000. Add credit cards, car loans and housing expenses and that burden on new grads can approach $50,000. That debt level, combined with a soft job market and depressed starting salaries in many industries, often leads to student default, which impacts the national economy because graduates can’t qualify for car loans or mortgages.
In the bleakest scenario, loan defaults can have a devastating on schools. Institutions stand to lose federal financial aid eligibility if their student loan default rate reaches 25 percent for three consecutive years or 40 percent for one year.
Used by more than 500 institutions and 1.2 million students, iGrad is the only online community providing a comprehensive and customized financial literacy program featuring career assistance for students and graduates, user-specific financial education courses, and student loan entrance and exit counseling. iGrad was named Best Product of 2012 by University Business magazine and recognized as 2013 Education Program of the Year by the Institute for Financial Literacy.