“If the rates double,” Dobry said, “it will create an additional hardship for students and families already struggling to finance an education.”
Dobry added that she doesn’t understand how this could take place when commercial interest rates remain relatively low.
At State University College of Technology at Delhi, director of financial aid Nancy Hughes said nearly two-thirds of the college’s 3,550 students received Stafford loans in 2012. Doubled interest rates would saddle those students with debt for even longer after graduation, she said.
Hughes noted that, for Delhi students, this is a particular hardship, as more than a third of them come from families with annual incomes of $30,000 or less.