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Students react to student loan forgiveness plan

AWC ready to help students navigate through new possibilities - 13 On Your Side’s Arlette Yousif reports

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA/KECY) - With President Biden’s announcement to forgive many student loans, our local community tries to navigate what that means for them.

Local students, past and present, are taking Biden’s student loan forgiveness announcement in to consideration when it comes to how they will go about paying back what they owe.

"It does make me feel like ok, the money I saved up for this to pay it back, I could use it towards something else possibly that could help me, you know, gain more independence in my life," says Arizona Western College Financial Aid Clerk Yazmin Gonzalez.

Gonzalez owes $4,000 for one semester of school already, though she took a break from classes due to the pandemic and is now working at AWC. She says this helps her prepare financially.

Meanwhile, another student says she’s been avoiding loans.

“This is my first year that I don’t qualify for financial aid. So, I decided to start paying from my own pocket. I did not take a loan, but I will be taking a loan for furthering my education, which will be completing my bachelors," explains AWC Student and Ambassador Sylvia Ruiz.

Currently, the student loan forgiveness plan does not provide relief for loans dated after June 30, 2022.

However, according to the White House’s website, the Biden Administration wants to “protect future students and taxpayers by reducing the cost of college and holding schools accountable when they hike up prices.”

AWC says it will help students navigate through their loans, although only a small amount of the college's students actually take out loans.

"We usually service about maybe 8,000 students a year for financial aid services. That includes the pell grants, scholarships, loans. My estimates are about probably less than 100 students requesting student loans," says AWC Financial Aid Director Alan Sanchez.

Sanchez says the Department of Education's website has been down all day, likely due to an excess number of users logging in to the system.

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Arlette Yousif

Arlette Yousif joined KYMA in November 2020 as a Multi Media Journalist. She holds a BA in Journalism with a minor in Film.

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