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Student loan rates double overnight

College student will now be paying twice the amount of interest on new federally subsidized loans.

That's after rates doubled overnight on the July 1st deadline.

Interest rates on federally subsidized stafford student loans went from 3.4 to 6.8 percent overnight.

MCC Director of Financial Aid James Kubacak says, "I know it really does sound bad, but from my perspective it was something that was scheduled. We've known for 4 or 5 years that this was supposed to happen."

The planned rate hike certainly wasn't a secret. But for many college students, it wasn't really on their minds either. Miriam Gracia, a working mother of four, admits that monitoring interest rates hasn't exactly been a top priority for her.

Gracia says, "You have to pay rent and bills, feed kids, you're looking at it like 'well this is money that they're going to lend me and I don't have to pay it back till later."

Kubacak says he doesn't expect the rates to have an impact on enrollment, "The students who need to borrow will still borrow regardless of whether it's 6.8 or 3.4."

Reports show that at the new interest rate, the average student will pay about $1,200 more over the span of a 10-year loan.  Miriam Gracia certainly isn't thrilled about the increase, but she's not going to let it stop her.  She's bound and determined to get her degree, regardless of the interest rate.

Gracia says, "Me making the choice to come to college is basically to show my family that education is really important. It really is. Now you can't really get a good job without a degree."

If Congress reaches an agreement in the future, they can reverse the rate increase. For now, it remains at 6.8 percent.

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