For years, College of the Ozarks has openly discouraged student debt by allowing students the opportunity to work a campus job to pay for their college education and, in the summer, for the upcoming year’s room and board.  The College also discourages debt by not participating in any state or federal loan programs.  While these efforts have curbed student debt, the College, in response to the stagnant economy, will add even more cost-saving opportunities for students.

“The College views discouraging debt as a priority and will continue to seek ways to help students avoid it,” said College of the Ozarks President Jerry C. Davis.

As such, the College will no longer participate in private student bank loans.

Also, in the upcoming 2013-14 year, the College will not increase the current room and board fee of $5900, which is the lowest room and board fee of any private, four-year Missouri college.

During the summer months, the College offers financially-deserving students the opportunity to participate in the Summer Work Program, consisting of 12, 40-hour work weeks at a campus job, to work off the upcoming year’s room and board.  In previous years, the College has capped the number of students admitted into the Summer Work Program at approximately 490.  This summer, that number will be increased to 550.

In past years, vacant rooms in residence halls have been available for students to rent in the summer.  This summer, the College will waive the fee for renting a residence hall room so that students may save all earnings from their off-campus summer jobs.

“It is not enough to stand idly by and allow America’s future to become ensnared in the debt trap,” President Davis said.  “We hope that others will follow our lead in discouraging debt.”

College of the Ozarks is consistently commended by U. S. News & World Report and Forbes for graduating students with the least debt in the nation, as well as being one of the best college buys.

Nationally, outstanding student loan debt totals $956 billion, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit release November 26, 2012.

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