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Women are bearing the brunt of the student debt crisis ⁠— Covid-19 made it worse

It’s a reasonable life plan: You graduate from college and get your first “real” job that pays enough that you can afford to live independently and maybe even stash away some money for a rainy day.

Unfortunately, living that dream remains out of reach for too many women. The American Association of University Women’s new research shows that student debt is making it close to impossible for many recent graduates to meet basic living expenses as they launch their careers.

Even more troubling is the likelihood the Covid-19 pandemic and consequent economic downturn will make a bad situation worse. Most of the layoffs over the past year were in women-dominated fields, and many more women voluntarily left their jobs to deal with childcare and homeschooling. With so many still out of work, countless women will find it impossible to pay back student loans. If we don’t address the student debt crisis right away, we could see an even greater setback in women’s progress in the years ahead.

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