I don’t usually post opinion pieces by others as blog entries, but this one is very similar to my own thoughts on the parental contribution change by the Alward government. It adds new context to the impact of the new policy on our post-secondary students. Here’s Jordan Thompson, president of the UNB Student Union, on the effect of the parental contribution change on New Brunswick student loans.
When it comes to financing education, 55 per cent of students at UNB rely on government student loans, considerably higher than the national average of 31 per cent. This is why when the Progressive Conservative government reinstated the parental contribution calculation to New Brunswick student loans, students at UNB were hit hard.
According to the government’s estimates, 29 per cent of student-loan recipients will be affected by this change. That is roughly 4,500 students. Some students will find their loans reduced by a few dollars and not face a massive reduction in comparison to previous years. Others will find their loans reduced by a considerable amount…
The question then becomes how do these students finance their education? If their parents cannot, or if they refuse to contribute, one option students have is to go to the banks to get student lines of credit or rely on credit-card debt. With both options interest begins accruing immediately, as opposed to student loans where interest is only charged after graduation. Other benefits to student loans are the Timely Completion Benefit, where debt is capped at $26,000 if you finish your degree in the specified time and the Repayment Assistant Program, which limits your monthly loan payments to 20 per cent of your income if you qualify for the program. These options do not exist with private financing.
You can read the entire piece here: http://thebruns.ca/articles/47485.