9 Ways to Reduce Your Student Loan Debt

A stark reality of college graduation these days is that two-thirds of students who earn a bachelor's degree leave campus with debt in tow—$26,600, on average.

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A stark reality of college graduation these days is that two-thirds of students who earn a bachelor's degree leave campus with debt in tow—$26,600, on average. That debt can escalate quickly for post-graduate and advanced degrees. For many people, it can take years, or even decades, to pay off the outstanding balance.

Choosing a college that has generous financial aid packages to begin with can help reduce student-loan debt. Some schools, such as Tufts University, near Boston, offer yearly payments toward retiring student loans for graduates who work in a qualifying public-service job. Various states have created similar programs that reward graduates for working in certain fields within the state.

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Mary Clare Fischer
Contributing Writer, Kiplinger's Personal Finance
Fischer served as an intern at Kiplinger's Personal Finance through the American Society of Magazine Editors 2013 summer internship program. She is a senior at the University of Maryland majoring in journalism and government and politics. As an editor at UMD's daily independent student newspaper, The Diamondback, she won the Paul Berg Diamondback Scholarship twice and was a top 20 finalist in the Hearst Journalism Awards Program's Personality/Profile category.