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Jun 28, 2013 8:18 PM by Connie Tran, KSBY News

Interest rates on subsidized Stafford loans expected to double

Thousands of Cal Poly students just celebrated graduating, but now many have to face the debt of loans. And starting on Monday, July 1, the interest rates on many new subsidized Stafford loans will double from 3.4% to 6.8%. That is unless the Senate can reach a compromise by Monday, however that is likely not going to happen because Congress has left for the July 4th holiday.

"I want this house to always be like we just graduated, because it's exciting," said recent Cal Poly psychology graduate Stephanie Woo.

On Friday, she was reliving her graduating moment, bracing for the current days when she will have to start paying back her subsidized federal student loans.

Woo said, "I graduated college and I was like, okay cool, all I have to do is worry about rent. If I get a job, I can just pay my rent, and then if i keep up on that, I'll be good. And in the back of my mind every time I was like, wait a second, I forgot, I have to worry about student loans for ever. Like it doesn't go away."

Woo said she has two loans out, adding up to around $13,000 dollars.

Fellow classmate Richard de Luna is in the same boat as Woo. He has close to $80,000 in loans.

de Luna said, "Pretty much my plan is to just start working right off the gate, just live poor, and hopefully I can end up paying everything off real fast."

The White House said 7 million students rely on loans. Republicans favor a fixed rate, while Democrats want to freeze the interest rates for another two years. de Luna is hoping for no raise of interest rates at all.

He said, "You know, whenever I was a kid they kept telling you, 'go to college, go to college, it'll all help out, it'll all get done' you know, I did all the good grades, I did all the tests and got all the you know, good scores. Turns out, I wasn't able to get anything, they just kept giving me loans."

Interest rates on existing loans will not change, and rates on new unsubsidized Stafford loans also will remain the same.

The overall student debt in the United States is currently $1-trillion dollars.



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