PA Ranks Third For Most Student Debt

WalletHub study ranks PA behind WV, SD

Student Debt Piggy Bank
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By Jennifer Bloodworth for NewsRadio 1020 KDKA

PITTSBURGH (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA) — Pennsylvania has made top five in another list! But it’s not a good one.

Personal finance website WalletHub says Pennsylvania residents have the third most student debt in the country.

The study took into account 11 metrics including average student debt, proportion of students with debt, debt proportion of income, and percent of student loans past due or in default.

WalletHub analyst Jill Gonzalez tells the KDKA Radio Afternoon News Pennsylvania ranked fourth in proportion of students with debt with 60 percent graduating with debt, and a lot of it.   

“[Pennsylvania has> the second highest average student debt in the country at over $60,000 upon graduation,” Gonzalez said. “National average is more like 40-something.”

Gonzalez says more student jobs and paid internships could help ease students’ financial woes, along with grants and grant growth — another area in which the commonwealth struggles.   

“Pennsylvania, just from this year to last, has actually lost state and local government grants per district and per in-state undergrad students,” Gonzalez said. “Obviously we don’t want to see a deficit there; we want to see that number growing and in PA, that seems to be a problem.”

West Virginia came in second on the list of most student debt and number one was South Dakota.

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