Dealing With Debt: 1992-93 Bachelorís Degree Recipients 10 Years Later - Borrowing for Undergraduate and Graduate Education

Borrowing for Undergraduate and Graduate Education

About half of all 1992–93 bachelor’s degree recipients (51 percent) borrowed at some point to help pay for their undergraduate education, borrowing an average of $10,200 (table 2). This includes borrowing from all sources, not just through student loan programs. Among financially dependent students in the lowest quarter of the family income distribution, 67 percent borrowed (figure A).2

About 41 percent of the graduates had enrolled in a graduate or first-professional degree program by 2003, and of those who enrolled, 45 percent borrowed to help pay for that education (tables 3 and 4). Those with loans only at the graduate or first-professional level had borrowed an average of $36,900 by 2003, while those with loans at both the undergraduate and graduate levels had borrowed an average of $41,700 (table 5). Among the subgroup of graduates with no further degree enrollment, 51 percent had borrowed, with loans averaging $10,000 (table 2).

2 Dependent students were divided into four equal-sized categories based on family income. The upper bound was $37,517 for the lowest income group, $55,000 for the lower middle group, and $74,036 for the upper middle group.