The U.S. Education Department has released its latest report on loan default rates and Clarkson continues to be among the institutions with the lowest reported rates in the nation. This further demonstrates Clarkson students continue to find gainful employment, with less than 1.6% defaulting on their loans. Nationally, the average is 10.1%, and the national four-year private rate is 6.3%.
Last month, Clarkson University’s Annual Fall Career Fair welcomed more than 200 employers who had come to hire Clarkson students for internships, co-ops, and full-time employment. Last year’s class of 2018 had a 97% placement rate in their chosen field of study within six months after graduating. A study conducted by Brookings Institution has also shown that a Clarkson degree will increase their earnings by 42 percent, on average further supporting the return on educational investment.
Borrowers enter default when they go more than 270 days without making a payment on their federal student loans. Clarkson has several options to help students pay for their education including loans and an alternative approach called an income share agreement (ISA) where Clarkson offers students up to $10,000 a year under the expectation that they will pay it back, interest free, after graduation based on percentage of their earned income over a set period of time. With a Clarkson ISA and their first job out of college, students know that their payment will be manageable and always in proportion to their income. It also makes it easier to make decisions about returning to college for graduate school or to take time off to care for a relative, with ways to defer payments, and there is a maximum duration of payment obligations back.
“At Clarkson, we want our students to graduate with great career opportunities in their chosen fields of study and to ensure the ROI that makes their choice to come to Clarkson the right one. To fill a gap in merit aid, we empower students to borrow responsibility by providing them with the tools they need to make informed decisions about loans and their personal finance. One example is our Lewis Income Share Agreement, or LISA program, where Clarkson and the student both have skin in the game and are invested in that student’s success,” said Kelly Chezum, VP for External Relations.
Clarkson also offers student loan counseling for both students and parents to understand their financial aid options to suit their needs to finance their Clarkson education.