If only I had known…a tale of debt dragons and the heroes that beat it

When you’re young, vivid daydreams can occupy all the space in your head. Yet when you grow up, the clouds you once soared can seem farther away. The princess you saved from the towering castle? Just an imaginary past. Your shiny armor is now rusted in the effort to fight off a scaly financial dragon. Had I been exposed to better tools when I made my education choices, my journey toward the future I wanted and the financial reality I could live with would have been so much easier.

Debt makes everything real

According to Filene’s research, 7 in 10 students graduating from college have student loan debt, averaging over $30,000. Seventy-seven percent of students that graduate college under the age of 40 regret not planning out how to manage their student loan debt. Meanwhile, 50% don’t even know what they borrowed, and 28% didn’t realize they even had student loans.

These numbers are alarming; credit unions should be concerned about their members who may soon face the burden of student debt. With support and cooperation from Credit Union Student Choice, Filene recently had the opportunity to test its Debt Dragon prototype at a Wisconsin high school. The theory of this prototype tool is that with it, students and family members can avoid insurmountable burdens of debt by better understanding the impacts of debt before they take it on.

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