Missouri university bans students who take out college loans

Katie LaPotin, Red Alert Politics, March 25, 2013

If you want a four-year college education but don’t want to burden yourself financially with hefty loans, look no further than the College of the Ozarks.

The evangelical Christian school of 1,400 located near Branson, Mo. has stopped admitting students who wish to take out private loans for their college education because university officials are concerned with the amount of college debt students are graduating with today.

“We are basically just trying to look out for the students’ interests,” College of the Ozarks President Jerry Davis told the Huffington Post. “Kids nowadays are not very sophisticated with money. Debt is a big problem all over the country.”

According to school officials, 99 current students who took out private loans will be affected by the new policy.

“This college has a very low percentage of students graduating with debt, but it has come up a little and we just don’t think that is a good idea,” Davis added. “This a work college, not a debt college.” The school years ago stopped taking students who wanted to get public loans.

To pay for their tuition, students work on campus in a variety of jobs, including working in the cafeteria and student housing, maintenance, landscaping and agricultural. They work part-time during the school year and then 40-hours a week during the summer to cover the cost of room and board. Some students also work in Branson, which is nationally known for its arts and entertainment scene.

Approximately 90 percent of the student body qualifies for financial aid.

According to FinAid.org, the average college student today graduates with nearly $23,000 in college debt – leading to a record number of college grads defaulting on their loans in recent years.

h/t Huffington Post

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