The negative effects of student debt are significant and persistent according to a Gallop poll. Those who borrowed more than $25,000 are less likely to enjoy work and are less financially and physically fit than their debt-free peers even 24 years after graduation.
Gallop examined five elements of well-being:
- Purpose: liking what you do each day and being motivated to achieve your goals
- Social: having supportive relationships and love in your life
- Financial: managing your economic life to reduce stress and increase security
- Community: liking where you live, feeling safe, and having pride in your community
- Physical: having good health and enough energy to get things done daily
Financial and physical well-being show the strongest relationship with student debt. Conversely, social well-being appears to have the weakest debt link.
“These results offer a new dimension of how college debt affects the rest of your life and it gives us more cause for concern,” said Brandon Busteed, executive director of Gallup Education.