Chipping away at millstone of debt

Sunday 24 October 2004

Graduates step out into the big wide world of work and grab their first pay cheque with glee.

By The Landlord

They are beginning a career and looking ahead to climbing the promotional ladder.

In the meantime, every cent of their pay cheque is probably accounted for in living costs and the expense of enjoying themselves.

The reality of most graduates' finances is a huge debt hanging around their neck. The Inland Revenue Department said about 419,000 people had outstanding student loans at the end of June.

The student loan scheme has been operating for 12 years now and, at graduation, the average loan is about $14,000. It can be much higher for those who make professional choices such as medicine.


Many students do not know the impact their loans will have on their financial life and there's little research available.

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