Perception Is Reality: Attitudes And Experiences Of Student Loan Borrowers

This brief examines data from 19,934 students with self-reported educational debt in Trellis’ Fall 2021 Student Financial Wellness Survey (SFWS), with special emphasis on their financial security and attitudes toward their loans, debt, and debt forgiveness. Nearly two-thirds of borrowers had accumulated more debt than expected, and 36 percent did not feel that their total debt was manageable. These students were also uncertain of their ability to eventually repay their loans—only 28 percent were confident they would be able to pay off the debt acquired while in school.