A recent survey by Junior Achievement USA and the Voya Foundation shows that 65 percent of teens believe borrowers are ultimately responsible for paying off their student loans, even if they borrowed more money than they were able to pay off, while 11 percent believe it is the government's responsibility. The survey was conducted March 1 through March 6 by Opinion Research and was released this month as part of National Financial Awareness Month.
"This survey shows today’s teens need information on how to make informed choices when considering the best higher education avenue for them and how to pay for it," says Michelle Jackson, president, Junior Achievement of Southern Nevada. "This is why it’s critical our children have access to the financial literacy programs JA offers free to schools in our community."
Jackson notes that a four-year college education is the second largest investment many people will make in their lifetimes and yet decisions to take on student debt are made by 17 and 18-year-olds who have received little to no financial literacy education. This can result in students assuming more debt than they are able to pay off with their expected future income.
Each year, Junior Achievement of Southern Nevada reaches more than 20,000 Clark County students in with programs focused on financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship.They also offer an online guide to student loans, which is available for students, parents and school counselors.
The survey conducted in March also found that 89 percent of teens who responded expect to attend college. Of those, 40 percent expect help in the form of scholarships and grants; 21 percent believe they will receive financial support from their parents and family members; 17 percent plan to work to earn money for college; and approximately 11 percent anticipate taking on student loans to help pay for their higher education.