July 14, 2023

HACU statement on $39 billion in student loan forgiveness for over 800,000 borrowers

SAN ANTONIO – The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities applauds the Biden-Harris Administration approval of more than $39 billion in student loan forgiveness for more than 800,000 borrowers in the United States, bringing much needed economic relief to Americans struggling with excessive student loan burdens. The discharge addresses failures in administrating the Federal student loan program so that qualifying payments made under income-driven repayment plans that were not accounted for make borrowers eligible for forgiveness if they have the equivalent of either 20 or 25 years of qualifying months accumulated.

“This is an extraordinary action on the part of the current administration to correct a longstanding unfairness in how student loans are administered in our country, and will directly affect some of the hardest working Americans who are now receiving support long denied to them,” said HACU President and CEO Antonio R. Flores. “This action will be felt most in communities of color, especially Hispanic communities, where many graduates return to give back to the neighborhoods and cities where they grew up. They will now have more economic leverage to thrive and succeed with this much needed relief for borrowers who have been paying on their loans for years.”

Historic wealth divides contribute to greater debt burdens for communities of color, as African American and Latino students use student loans to finance higher education at greater rates than their white peers. According to a 2016 analysis from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 72 percent of Latino and more than 90 percent of Black students take out loans to attend college, compared to 66 percent of white students, making the burden of debt much more excessive across a wider swath of Americans of color.

About HACU
The Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, founded in 1986, represents more than 500 colleges and universities in the United States, D.C, Puerto Rico, Latin America, Spain, and school districts throughout the U.S. HACU is the only national association representing existing and emerging Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs). The Association’s headquarters are in San Antonio, Texas, with regional offices in Washington, D.C. and Sacramento, California.