Higher Education: Resources and Finance

By Seymour E. Harris | Go to book overview

($100 to $150 average rise) roughly matching the gains of per capita income, the proposed scholarship and loan program would be adequate. Greater increases might require somewhat greater recourse to loans.

Under the proposed program, rates of interest would be lower than those now charged by most IHL. Table 21A-1 makes this clear, as does the survey of the College Life Insurance Company of America. In the latter listing the average rate after graduation for 80 funds is 3.4 per cent. The rates for 100 IHL in the prairie states are generally above those for prestige IHL listed in Table 21A-1. More than one-quarter charged 6 to 7 per cent.9 The median charge in the Kiplinger survey was 4 per cent. Current loan programs generally set limits on loans per year or total loans much below those set under this program. A ceiling of $1,000 yearly or $5,000 in all is the exception rather than the rule. For the 100-college study, only one IHL allowed loans in excess of $1,000 in one year, and two allowed loans of $750 to $1,000.10

Again, the ten, twenty, or forty (later) years of repayment are much more generous than current programs allow. In most of the surveys modal periods are three to five years, with smaller institutions tending to demand payments in even shorter periods. The loan program under the NDEA is a great advance over current practices in amounts available per year per student, total loans per student, rate of interest, and subsidies involved both in rates charged and the forgiveness feature. My proposals here go much beyond those under the NDEA. For those who are skeptical of the possibilities, I can only point to the substantial increases of loan finance in recent years at Harvard and in many other CSS institutions. Nor is the general rise of both consumer and capital credit in the economy entirely irrelevant.


FOOTNOTES
1
Kiplinger, Student Loans: Their Place in Student Aid, 1956, p. 30; HEW, Statistics of Higher Education, 1955-56: Receipts, Expenditures and Property, pp. 87-89; Report of the President, January, 1960.
2
J. U. Monro, "Untapped Resource: Loans for Student Aid," College Board Review, Winter, 1956.
3
Federal Assistance to Higher Education, Senate Subcommittee on Education, 1960, pp. 105-112.
5
Kiplinger, op. cit., p. 24.
6
2 × 10 (20 per cent) × 3.25 billion = $650 million.
7
2 × 20 (40 per cent) × 5.75 billion = $2.30 billion.
8
Recall that incomes at ages when sons and daughters go to college are higher than the average, and, moreover, parents of children at college have higher incomes than the average.
9
W. R. Bokelman, "Making Student Loans," College and University Business, April, 1954, p. 23.

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