I am 23 and, thankfully, don’t have any student loans. I got a scholarship in college, and because of this my parents agreed to help pay for my masters degree, but I count myself among a very small proportion of recent graduates that isn’t drowning in student debt. So much debt, in fact, that 35 percent of those of us under age 30 simply won’t—or can’t—make their loan payments anymore, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Since 2004, educational debt has nearly tripled, to $966 billion, surpassing credit-card debt, auto loans, and home equity lines of credit to take second place behind mortgage debt, with a total balance moving steadily toward $1 trillion. Even through the recession, student debt showed no signs of stopping.