“What do I even say?” I was designing my graduation cap and thinking about the future in front of me. While I was excited about graduating, I was more nervous about my impending student loan payments. I just didn’t know exactly what the future held for me. In the end, I left my cap blank, but this graduation day, more graduates are putting the student loan balances hanging over their head right on top of it.
It’s been a tradition for centuries, designing a graduation cap to mark the culmination of one’s college career. It gives each of us a chance to think about who we are as a graduate and what we want to say as we step into our future. While students still get to design the cap of their choice, they are not decorating them the way you would expect. Graduates are decorating their caps to commemorate their student loans, not their plans for the future. One student cleverly spoofed a popular TV show putting “Game of Loans” on her cap. New graduates are designing their own caps, but are they designing a future they are confident in?
Today, more student’s caps reflect the debt they are graduating with. In 2017, the average student graduated with $39,400 in debt. Students with debt are much more likely to put their life on hold and move back home with their parents. These balances change the way graduates live. In a survey conducted by TD Ameritrade, 21% of students said they delayed getting married. While 40% of students said they delayed buying a home. Now, students are forced to ask themselves, “Do I want an education, or do I want to move out of my parent’s house?”
Students are putting off their future to pay off student loans from the past. Thankfully, there is hope for parents and students looking to college in the future. There are a lot of options when it comes to saving and paying for college! Unfortunately, most people are unfamiliar with new options available today. Thanks to the internet, it’s now possible to set up an online trust and let your friends and family help give the gift of education, while still saving what you can when you can.
Trusts used to be expensive and out-of-reach for the average family, leaving most parents to choose 529’s. However, these plans can be inflexible and negatively impact a student’s ability to receive scholarships and grants. College Savings Trust allows you to set up a trust and begin saving today. So, your future student can put their plans on their graduation cap, instead of their debts.
For more graduation cap design ideas, check out our latest Pinterest Board: