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October 10, 2022

Do Students Graduate With Zero Debt At New Saint Andrews College?

A recent news report listed US colleges and universities that have graduates with the most debt. 

The report summarizes the findings of The Institute for College Access & Success which looked at students who graduated with debt from four-year institutions in 2020. 

According to the report, students who graduated in 2020 from New Saint Andrews college had $0 debt. 

“New Saint Andrews College declines to take federal student loan money,” Dr. Benjamin Merkle said. “This principled decision allows us to stay true to our mission by not being encumbered by the strings attached to federal money.” 

For students graduating from Midwestern State University in Texas, a public institution, their average debt was $49,146.

For students graduating from Drexel University in Pennsylvania, a private non-profit institution, their average debt was $72,883.

According to the study, other private non-profit colleges in Idaho graduate students with average debt between $15,000 and $29,000. 

Merkle added that he knows some NSA students who have taken out loans to help pay for their time at the college but those were private loans. 

“The difference is that they don’t take out massive irresponsible amounts, which I think the federal system provokes,” Merkle explained. “And then these loans aren’t being subsidized by the taxpayer. I recognize that it is a hard decision for students to go into debt for college but a private loan is a responsible plan on the student’s part.”

Merkle said that NSA takes into account market trends in higher ed and NSA works to keep the rigorous program affordable for students and families. The reality is that most NSA graduates have little to no debt and that is a great goal for a college to encourage. Minimum debt is a responsible plan for both colleges and students.  

The current average debt for students in the U.S. who owe federal money is $35,900.