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Maine students leave college with an average of nearly $30,000 of debt, report finds

Maine students leave school with the 15th highest rate of of college debt in the nation, according to a report released Thursday by a student loan refinancing and consolidation group.

LendEDU examined student financial aid data for the Class of 2016 from 1,161 public and private nonprofit four-year higher education institutions across the country to come up with its rankings.

In Maine, 58 percent of students included in the survey graduated with some debt, and the average graduate owed $29,752 toward their education, according to the report. That put Maine 15th on the list.

Still, Maine fared better than every other New England state, with the exception of Vermont, where the student debt average was about $2,000 lower, putting it at No. 27 on the list.

 Students in Utah had the smallest burden, graduating with an average of $18,810 in debt, according to the data. About 39 percent of students graduated with some debt. On the other end of the spectrum, just under 70 percent of Pennsylvania students had loans to pay back after graduating, worth an average of $35,185.

LendEDU based its report on student financial aid data from Peterson’s, a national college information and test preparation organization. They cobbled together information including the number of bachelor degree recipients in 2016 to the average debt of those graduates. Data for the Class of 2017 won’t be released until 2018.

The Fiddlehead Focus / St. John Valley Times is pleased to feature content from our sister company, Bangor Daily News. To read the rest of “Maine students leave college with an average of nearly $30,000 of debt, report finds,” an article by contributing Bangor Daily News staff writer Nick McCrea, please follow this link to the BDN online.

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