New Jersey asks university for ‘race sheet’ to give students real picture of financial loan – CBS New York


MONTCLAIR, NJ (CBSNew York) – A so-called “shopping sheet” is changing the way New Jersey students anticipate their spending.

And in Garden State, it’s now required by law, CBS2’s Meg Baker reported.

Montclair State University was bustling at lunchtime on Thursday. Students CBS2’s Meg Baker spoke to said the most important thing they look for in college isn’t just the major they want, but affordability as well.

“In the transfer process, that was definitely the number one factor, like looking for similar education costs and things like that,” Summit’s Greg Hampson said.

“There was definitely a barrier with the schools I wanted to go to. Studying music, many programs are quite expensive. I want to spend my money somewhere where I will learn a lot, ”added Jac Powers of Hazlet.

READ MORE: Expert Advice On How To Get The Most From University Aid, Student Loans, And Bursaries

New Jersey now requires all higher education institutions to provide all incoming and enrolled students with a purchase sheet showing what they will owe each year. You should expect to see this during the application process and before the next school year.

“We want to prevent students from falling into the student debt trap,” said Senator Shirley Turner.

Turner sponsored the bill, promoting transparency.

“Quite often the colleges pull what you call ‘the bait and the switch.’ They will give the students the grants and scholarships during their first year. Then, throughout the four years, they replace those grants and scholarships with student loans, ”Turner said.

READ MORE: Study: Some graduates reportedly spend a week in jail to write off student loan debt

Montclair State has been using a purchase sheet since 2019. Jim Anderson, the school’s director of financial aid, said the simple format helps families better plan and compare schools.

“Historically, colleges have had their own financial aid award letters, in many different formats. Often times it’s very confusing for students to achieve the bottom line, which is what is rightfully theirs, ”Anderson said. “It provides estimated costs based on their intended status, the suburban student or resident, and provides grants that the student is supposed to receive and sub-totals. This allows them to see what their payout is going to be.

The sheet also provides other consumer information, such as the graduation rate, which helps students better assess where they want to attend.

The average student loan debt in the United States is over $ 42,000, according to Federal Reserve data.

Meg Baker of CBS2 contributed to this report.

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