Keene State College seniors come to the realization of just how much they will be paying back in student loans as graduation quickly approaches.

Dan Kelly, Financial Aid Specialist said, “This event is for loan repayment and consolidation. Kids can come and sit down, if they registered they can get a printout of their loan history and then we would provide that for them her if they didn’t register they can just sign in and we can provide that for them later.”

“We’re just going to talk about defaulting on your loans, how not to default, payment methods and consolidation,” Kelly said.    

KSC senior, Kirsten Licht said, “I don’t know if I’m more stressed [after the presentation], but it’s not helping, it doesn’t help anything.”

KSC student, Jake Allen said, “It was definitely more overwhelming.  I think just because it seems very skimmed surfaced, which I guess is the point, but at the same time it left me with more questions than answers.”

Allen said that most of his loans are private and that he expected more coverage of those private loans opposed to so much information on just federal.          

The student loan presentation for students took place in the Mountain View Room in the L.P. Young Student Center on April 21 and 22.

Deborah Nichols, the associate director of Financial Aid, presented to KSC students different ways to pay their student loans after they graduate.

Nichols opened up the presentation by explaining what NSLDS is, which she said was the National Student Loan Data System.

She said she advises students to go to the NSLDS website and enter their personal pins to view their personal loan information because it is important to know your balance.

She also added that is a website that has a repayment calculator for students to figure out how much they are going to owe in loans.

Nichols then went on to explain what a Loan Servicer is — who students pay their loans to.

Nichols made it a point that the customer service representatives at Loan Servicers are often difficult over the phone.

“Sometimes you can get a cranky one, so if you get a cranky customer service rep, you just say ‘Yeah? Okay,’ hang up and redial. They really have a bank of about a hundred sitting there so hopefully you won’t get a cranky one again,” Nichols said.

She made it clear in that case, students can contact her to receive help dealing with the Loan Servicers because she receives school servicers instead of student services.

Nichols went on to explain the difference between subsidized loans and unsubsidized loans.

Subsidized loans are loans that the government pays interest on while students are in school and unsubsidized loans are loans where the borrower is responsible for interest, Nichols said.

She also added that most of the students who attended the presentation had subsidized loans.

Nichols presented a slide that showed that students pay minimally 9,000 dollars in interest overall.

Nichols went through the many different payment plans that undergraduate students can pick to being repaying their loans after their grace period.

A grace period is usually six months or nine months, depending on the type of payment plan you have, that allows graduated students to find a job to begin paying back their loans Nichols said.

“The school reports that you graduated on a certain date and six months afterwards, you start repaying,” Nichols said.

Nichols explained if you fail to pay your loans it is called default. She said default results in delinquency.

“After six months, if you fail to make payments, you’re a delinquent for two-hundred-and-seventy days,” Nichols said.

Nichols added that the number one reason for default is people failing to inform their loan servicers about changed addresses.

Savanna Balkun can be contacted at

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