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  • President Signs Bill Preventing Student Loan Interest Rates from Doubling | MASSPIRG Students
    doubling is one of many policies championed early by a President who understands debt strapped students and families are struggling with rising college costs and an uncertain job market for graduates In January President Obama used his State of the Union address to urge Congress to come together to prevent interest rates from doubling on millions of student loans next year Without Congressional action the interest rate would have doubled from 3 4 to 6 8 on July 1st An interest rate increase would have resulted in 1 000 in additional debt for 7 5 million low and moderate income students who borrowed new federally subsidized Stafford loans next year The one year extension provides relief until Congress can approve a longer term measure Congress passed the legislation on Friday July 29th with a strong bi partisan vote PIRG advocates and students attended the signing ceremony this afternoon About Us Our Leadership Our Mission Accomplishments Chapters Berkshire Community College Fitchburg State University Holyoke Community College Mass College of Liberal Arts MassBay Community College Middlesex Community College North Shore Community College Salem State University UMass Amherst UMass Boston UMass Dartmouth UMass Lowell Westfield State University Get Involved Take Action Volunteer on Campus Campus Internships Start a PIRG Chapter Full Time Jobs Campaigns Make Textbooks Affordable 100 Renewable Energy Stop Overuse of Antibiotics Get Big Money out of Politics New Voters Project Hunger and Homelessness Newsroom Latest Updates Blog News Releases PIRG in the News Reports DONATE Internships Work on important issues learn valuable skills get hands on experience and make a difference Get Info Students in Action Like Us Follow Us RSS Contact News Releases by Campaign Make Textbooks Affordable Make Textbooks Affordable 100 Renewable Energy Newsroom Blog Media Hits News Releases Reports Resources MASSPIRG Students in Action North Shore student

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/news/sp/president-signs-bill-preventing-student-loan-interest-rates-doubling (2016-04-29)
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  • STATEMENT OF MASSPIRG STAFF ATTORNEY LIZZI WEYANT ON PASSAGE OF THE SHORT-TERM FUNDING BILL FOR STATEWIDE PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION | MASSPIRG Students
    transportation riders off of the system at the exact time that the T should be working to preserve its record ridership levels At the same time as the legislature approved short term funding for public transportation they also passed a long stalled bill that will give critical funding to municipalities to use for road and bridge repair and maintenance The release of Chapter 90 funds to cities and towns across the Bay State will mean that the construction season can finally begin We are grateful that the legislature approved this short term funding fix for the T and the RTAs but we need our decision makers to pass legislation that creates a comprehensive statewide long term solution to all of our transportation funding needs We need the legislature to fix our broken transportation system and work to increase public transportation ridership We need to immediately end this history of under funding our transportation systems so that everyone in the commonwealth can have the kind of 21st century transportation system we need and want About Us Our Leadership Our Mission Accomplishments Chapters Berkshire Community College Fitchburg State University Holyoke Community College Mass College of Liberal Arts MassBay Community College Middlesex Community College North Shore Community College Salem State University UMass Amherst UMass Boston UMass Dartmouth UMass Lowell Westfield State University Get Involved Take Action Volunteer on Campus Campus Internships Start a PIRG Chapter Full Time Jobs Campaigns Make Textbooks Affordable 100 Renewable Energy Stop Overuse of Antibiotics Get Big Money out of Politics New Voters Project Hunger and Homelessness Newsroom Latest Updates Blog News Releases PIRG in the News Reports DONATE Internships Work on important issues learn valuable skills get hands on experience and make a difference Get Info Students in Action Like Us Follow Us RSS Contact News Releases by

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/news/ma/statement-masspirg-staff-attorney-lizzi-weyant-passage-short-term-funding-bill-statewide (2016-04-29)
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  • Victory for Students. | MASSPIRG Students
    4 to 6 8 on July 1st Overwhelming support from students and families across the country showed our congressmen they needed to act This is an important step but we still have a long way to go to make college affordable That s why it s so important that Congress knows that this means something to students Click here to add you name to our Thank You to Congress and the President We ve worked hard to protect and expand student aid We helped pass the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act which increased the Pell Grant capped monthly loan payments and bolstered community colleges It was funded by cutting wasteful subsidies to banks and private lenders There s still much more to be done Today I m glad we re moving in the right direction Higher Ed Student Debt About Us Our Leadership Our Mission Accomplishments Chapters Berkshire Community College Fitchburg State University Holyoke Community College Mass College of Liberal Arts MassBay Community College Middlesex Community College North Shore Community College Salem State University UMass Amherst UMass Boston UMass Dartmouth UMass Lowell Westfield State University Get Involved Take Action Volunteer on Campus Campus Internships Start a PIRG Chapter Full Time Jobs Campaigns Make Textbooks Affordable 100 Renewable Energy Stop Overuse of Antibiotics Get Big Money out of Politics New Voters Project Hunger and Homelessness Newsroom Latest Updates Blog News Releases PIRG in the News Reports DONATE Internships Work on important issues learn valuable skills get hands on experience and make a difference Get Info Students in Action Like Us Follow Us RSS Contact Blog Posts by Campaign Make Textbooks Affordable Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness Make Textbooks Affordable Make Textbooks Affordable New Voters Project Newsroom Blog Media Hits News Releases Reports Resources MASSPIRG Students in Action North Shore student

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/blogs/ma/victory-students (2016-04-29)
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  • RESPONDING TO STUDENTS, CONGRESS EXTENDS LOW COLLEGE LOAN RATE | MASSPIRG Students
    confirming that college affordability is a key concern for young people their families and anyone who cares about the U S having a high skill competitive economy Today s victory is another important step in getting rising student loan debt under control When Congress considers further action to decrease student loan debt they ll know that students are paying close attention Students and borrowers saddled with debt all across the country made their voices heard In March dozens of students gathered in front of the Capitol to deliver over 130 000 letters telling Congress Don t Double My Rate In May and June students lobbied their lawmakers and participated in media events to amplify their voices Student body presidents across the country rallied their campuses with 275 presidents writing letters to their lawmakers and newspapers demanding action to extend the current low rate Widespread action across the country continues to show Americans strongly support making college affordable A large coalition of student youth consumer parent higher education and religious groups organized dozens of on the ground events in districts and mobilized hundreds of thousands of citizens to call or write their lawmakers The House of Representatives passed legislation on Friday with a strong bi partisan vote of 373 52 and the Senate passed the bill with a 74 19 vote The student loan provisions were included in H R 4348 which included a package of issues including the 2 year reauthorization of the transportation bill The President is expected to sign the bill before Sunday About Us Our Leadership Our Mission Accomplishments Chapters Berkshire Community College Fitchburg State University Holyoke Community College Mass College of Liberal Arts MassBay Community College Middlesex Community College North Shore Community College Salem State University UMass Amherst UMass Boston UMass Dartmouth UMass Lowell Westfield State

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/news/sp/responding-students-congress-extends-low-college-loan-rate (2016-04-29)
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  • MASSPIRG | Together we can make change happen Students
    week Thanks to the UMassD community for supporting the effort More Pages first previous 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 next last Visit Our Blog MASSPIRG Homepage About Us Our Leadership Our Mission Accomplishments Chapters Berkshire Community College Fitchburg State University Holyoke Community College Mass College of Liberal Arts MassBay Community College Middlesex Community College North Shore Community College Salem State University UMass Amherst UMass Boston UMass Dartmouth UMass Lowell Westfield State University Get Involved Take Action Volunteer on Campus Campus Internships Start a PIRG Chapter Full Time Jobs Campaigns Make Textbooks Affordable 100 Renewable Energy Stop Overuse of Antibiotics Get Big Money out of Politics New Voters Project Hunger and Homelessness Newsroom Latest Updates Blog News Releases PIRG in the News Reports DONATE Search form Search Students in Action Like Us Follow Us RSS Contact MASSPIRG Students in Action North Shore student Kaitlyn Heathman speaks at a press conference releasing our transportation report Common Connections Students support more affordable textbooks Students at UMASS Boston show off their energy efficiency knowledge Students at Fitchburg State table for the homeless UMASS Amherst students support more and better public transit UMASS Boston students pose with Chancellor Motley Students at UMASS Lowell and Dean of Students Larry Siegel support ending agricultural subsidies for unhealthy fiood Tell Your Elected Leaders Support 100 Clean Energy Take Action We can build support for a future powered by 100 clean and renewable energy Jobs for Graduating Seniors Learn more and apply If you are ready to dig in and start solving the problems that confront our country consider a job with U S PIRG Intern with MASSPIRG Apply Online As a MASSPIRG intern you ll learn skills and get valuable experience working on a campaign You ll learn how to build teams of volunteers

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/home?page=19 (2016-04-29)
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  • Banks Skim Millions in Fees from Student Aid Using Debit-Card-Linked Student IDs | MASSPIRG Students
    and loan money leave students in deeper debt Every penny of financial aid money should go to educational expenses not an education in high bank fees said Williams Additional findings from the report include 1 Millions of students are affected Almost 900 of the 7 300 campuses participating in the federal financial aid program now have a banking partnership Higher One the biggest financial firm has partnerships with 520 colleges that enroll 4 3 million students Currently 12 5 or 1 in 8 of all federal aid recipients nationally disburse their aid money into a Higher One OneAccount Wells Fargo the biggest bank in the market partners with 43 campuses that enroll over 2 million students Many of the country s largest colleges already have agreements Currently 32 of the 50 largest public 4 year universities 26 of the largest 50 community colleges and 6 of the largest 20 private not for profit schools have debit or prepaid card contracts with a bank or a financial firm according to U S PIRG Education Fund research 2 There is big money at stake The biggest firm in the business Higher One makes 80 of its revenues by siphoning fees from student aid disbursement cards totaling 142 5 million of its 176 3 million total revenues in 2011 according to SEC filings These fees include ATM and other transaction fees overdraft fees and interchange fees imposed on merchants who accept cards 3 The most impacted students are among the neediest Students most reliant on financial aid come from low and moderate income backgrounds Roughly 40 of freshmen are first generation college students and 25 of all students are both first generation and low income 4 The service appears to be endorsed by the colleges Huntington Bank paid 25 million to co brand and link their checking accounts with Ohio State University student IDs Other schools receive substantial payouts revenue sharing deals and large reductions in administrative costs Many bank contracts require aid recipients to visit their website before they choose how to receive their aid into an existing account on a check or on a disbursement card they co brand with the college which implies an endorsement added Williams These relationships create at least the appearance of a conflict of interest as schools may be tempted to choose the arrangement that gives them the most money rather than the arrangement that gives their students the best deal The campus debit card marketplace is tilted so that students can t get a fair deal said Ed Mierzwinski report co author and U S PIRG Consumer Program Director Campus administrations and policy makers have the power to clean it up Mierzwinski also urged the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to upgrade consumer protections on prepaid cards The report includes recommendations to colleges and policy makers such as taking steps to ensure students have an unbiased choice of where to bank and that there are no fees charged to access financial aid The report also lists

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/news/sp/banks-skim-millions-fees-student-aid-using-debit-card-linked-student-ids-0 (2016-04-29)
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  • The Campus Debit Card Trap | MASSPIRG Students
    best practices by colleges and banks and new protections for consumers and provides tips for students Greater transparency will help make the market work better KEY FINDINGS U S PIRG has identified almost 900 card partnerships between colleges and banks or other financial firms at schools with over 9 million students or over 2 in 5 42 of all students nationwide Industry leading banks and financial firms tout that upwards of 70 80 of students use their cards after a few years of marketing U S PIRG has identified that 32 of the 50 largest public 4 year universities 26 of the largest 50 community colleges and 6 of the largest 20 private not for profit schools had debit or prepaid card contracts with a bank or a financial firm Of banks US Bank had the most card agreements at 52 campuses with over 1 7 million students Wells Fargo had card agreements at schools with the most students its contracts were at 43 campuses that have over 2 million students The largest financial firm player Higher One has card agreements with 520 campuses that enroll over 4 3 million students Although contracts are hard to obtain revenues to schools can be substantial A new contract between Ohio State University and Huntington Bank includes 25 million in payments to the school over 15 years It also includes an additional 100 million in lending and investment to neighborhoods surrounding campus Fees can be steep and frequent for students using the university adopted cards including a variety of per swipe fees inactivity fees overdraft fees ATM fees and fees to reload prepaid cards At least one fee listed on Higher One s fee schedule would violate U S Department of Education rules if charged other fees may violate other rules Potentially aggressive

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/reports/sp/campus-debit-card-trap (2016-04-29)
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  • MASSPIRG | Together we can make change happen Students
    24 25 next last Visit Our Blog MASSPIRG Homepage About Us Our Leadership Our Mission Accomplishments Chapters Berkshire Community College Fitchburg State University Holyoke Community College Mass College of Liberal Arts MassBay Community College Middlesex Community College North Shore Community College Salem State University UMass Amherst UMass Boston UMass Dartmouth UMass Lowell Westfield State University Get Involved Take Action Volunteer on Campus Campus Internships Start a PIRG Chapter Full Time Jobs Campaigns Make Textbooks Affordable 100 Renewable Energy Stop Overuse of Antibiotics Get Big Money out of Politics New Voters Project Hunger and Homelessness Newsroom Latest Updates Blog News Releases PIRG in the News Reports DONATE Search form Search Students in Action Like Us Follow Us RSS Contact MASSPIRG Students in Action North Shore student Kaitlyn Heathman speaks at a press conference releasing our transportation report Common Connections Students support more affordable textbooks Students at UMASS Boston show off their energy efficiency knowledge Students at Fitchburg State table for the homeless UMASS Amherst students support more and better public transit UMASS Boston students pose with Chancellor Motley Students at UMASS Lowell and Dean of Students Larry Siegel support ending agricultural subsidies for unhealthy fiood Tell Your Elected Leaders Support 100 Clean Energy Take Action We can build support for a future powered by 100 clean and renewable energy Jobs for Graduating Seniors Learn more and apply If you are ready to dig in and start solving the problems that confront our country consider a job with U S PIRG Intern with MASSPIRG Apply Online As a MASSPIRG intern you ll learn skills and get valuable experience working on a campaign You ll learn how to build teams of volunteers organize events on campus and work with the media A crash course in effective citizenship Get the toolkit Get the basic

    Original URL path: http://masspirgstudents.org/home?page=20 (2016-04-29)
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