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SCOTUS won’t ‘loan’ students’ debt forgiveness

After+tireless+advocacy+towards+the+forgiveness+of+student+debt%2C+the+Supreme+Court+ruled+against+Biden%E2%80%99s+promising+student+loan+debt+relief+plan+June+30.++Photo+courtesy+of+Wikiepdia+Commons+
After tireless advocacy towards the forgiveness of student debt, the Supreme Court ruled against Biden’s promising student loan debt relief plan June 30. Photo courtesy of Wikiepdia Commons

After tireless advocacy towards the forgiveness of student debt, the Supreme Court ruled against the favor of Biden’s promising student loan debt relief plan June 30.  

This infamous plan coined by the Biden administration has faced many controversies throughout his term. About 43,000 students from all over the country have hopes to be forgiven debts of up to $20,000. According to an article by NBC News though, the justices seemed to have other plans in mind, as they ruled the program to be an unlawful abuse of presidential power due to Congress not explicitly approving the forgiveness plan.  

The article mentions how the court used the Higher Education Relief Opportunities for Students Act (HEROES Act) of 2003 to justify their ruling against the Biden administration. According to Congress, this law states how the Secretary of Education can only waive or change any student financial aid in a “national emergency,” to ensure that students are not left in an affected economic position. 

So, you may be asking, how does this affect our students? 

Sophomore nursing major, Natalie Moreno, resorted to taking out loans through UTEP in Spring 2022 as she faced challenges that led her to require an extra helping hand.  

As a supporter of debt relief, she mentions how though this court decision may seem disheartening to most, she feels this case has opened the doors to highlight the importance of learning about the reality of loans. 

“The loan is not the problem,” Moreno said. “The problem is lacking knowledge as students about what loans are and how to use them.”  

Mentioning instead of trying to find solutions to pay student debt, most people do not know what they get themselves into and end up drowning in debt like most college graduates. 

Moreno mentioned how this case has helped her understand the proper way to use loans and has given her the knowledge to curate a plan to pay for them after graduation.  

On the other side of the argument, 2019 UTEP alumni Jennifer Urbina believes that students should not be discouraged from taking out loans regarding the court’s decision.  

Even though she had her fair share of experience with taking out loans, Urbina does not regret putting her education first. “I had to get a few applicable loans that could help me afford my education,” Urbina said. “Financial aid helped with some minimum amounts covered but it took me a little longer to complete my degree.” 

She mentioned how she began her journey from one month to another, deciding to pack her life in a single suitcase and move to Austin, Texas to pursue interior design at a private college. Attempting to not only afford her living but her education as well, which almost cost her $30,000 in loans.  

But in the end, she did what most college students are known for: changing their minds. She decided to pursue a degree in business at UTEP, graduating in Dec. 2019. 

Even though the odds fell in her favor at the right time, Urbina believes that the court made the right decision. “I agree that they shouldn’t just get rid of everyone’s debt because we make our own adult decisions,” Urbina said. “I changed my mind, but I also knew the outcome was going to be.” 

The same day after the court ruled against the Student Loan Debt Relief, the White House published President Biden’s statement on the court’s ruling, expressing how he will continue to fight to fulfill his promise for college students in the country. He also addressed the hypocrisy of the Republican elected officials, as they forgave billions of dollars in pandemic-related loans to businesses.  

Biden said, even though the Supreme Court’s decision was disappointing, he is proud of the massive progress he has made. Referring to the increase of Pell Grants, forgiveness of loans for individuals in public service, and the debt repayment plan that helps students with undergraduate loans to pay no more than five percent of their income.  

Even though the fight may seem over for most, the fight for student debt relief opened the door to many possibilities to create a better and brighter future for students.

Yoali Rodriguez is a contributor and may be reached at [email protected] 

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Yoali Rodriguez
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