LAWTON, OK (KSWO)- Cameron University has been recognized as one of the best colleges in the country for minimizing student loan debt.
"Student debt is an unpleasant, yet sometimes unavoidable topic," says Jon Horinek, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Success. "At Cameron University, we strive to keep student debt to a minimum by offering tuition waivers, financial assistance – including scholarships and grants – and part-time employment on campus to our students. While we are appreciative of this recognition, inadequate state funding continues to make it more difficult for us to maintain our commitment to affordability and low student debt."
According to Student Loan Report in its "Student Loan Debt per Graduate by School by State" report for the Class of 2015, Cameron ranks third among schools in Oklahoma, 44th among public colleges and universities nationwide, and 108th among all private and public institutions. Only 43 percent of CU students graduate with debt; the national average is 58 percent. The report shows the average debt load per student at Cameron University is $9,533.10. That's 25 percent less than the average debt load per student in Oklahoma and almost 44 percent less than the average debt load per student nationwide.
Cameron University has the second-lowest cost of attendance in Oklahoma. However, the university took dramatic and painful steps to cope with a 16-percent cut in state appropriations last fiscal year. The institution had no choice but to increase tuition.
"Our state's pattern of continuing disinvestment in higher education directly impacts students, our economy, and our future growth." says Horinek. "We work hard every day to keep costs down and we would love to see more students graduate debt-free. However, without adequate state funding, we have to make difficult choices."