In June 2016, while presidential candidate Hillary Clinton was at a Denver, Colorado rally she proposed a unique student loan plan designed for entrepreneurs. When we think of entrepreneurs a lot of famous names come to mind. Inc. com features its top ten richest entrepreneurs and some on that list are Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, and Bill Gates.
It’s hard to imagine those people with student loans, but more people take out loans than you might imagine. However, Steve Jobs actually left college because it was too expensive. In 2014, 69% of college graduates had an average of $28,950 dollars in student loan debt. The Federal Reserve notes the April 2016 student debt total is a astounding $1,363,096,835, 035 and is in a constant state of increase.
Clinton’s progressive plan permits the entrepreneur and their start-up employees to defer college loan repayment for up to three years and up to $ 17,500. The idea of the concept is that the entrepreneur’s funds will go into the business, which in turn will hire more people. The 10-20 people at start-up level will not have to worry about the cost of building a business and paying off their loans. The plan has five distinct parts and is called “Tech & Innovation Agenda”.
Zero Hedge states, “The tech agenda also affirms Clinton’s commitment to net neutrality; her desire to make the United States Digital Service, a tech team that modernizes government processes, a permanent part of the executive branch; her plan to train 50,000 computer science teachers over the next decade; and her interest in ensuring tech companies can recruit top talent from anywhere in the world. According to the platform, Clinton “would ‘staple’ a green card to STEM masters and PhDs from accredited institutions.”
Struggles for Entrepreneurs
While people often hear about the successful entrepreneurs, the plans that do not make it are rarely discussed. The public doesn’t want to read about a sad tale. The numbers for entrepreneurial failures are staggering. According to Bloomberg in September of 2013, 8 out of every 10 entrepreneurs who start a company will fail with in the first 18 months of start-up. So, 80% of attempted new businesses fail in less than two years from start-up. A Wall Street Journal analysis found that in 1989 only 10.6 % of households owned a private business, and that figure dropped to a mere 3.6% in the year 2013. The situation is not improving.
Market Watch draws a parallel between start-up failure and student loan repayment when discussing a 2015 study from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia which notes that 40% of those people wishing to begin their own business feel their repayments prevent them from doing this. There simply isn’t enough money to go around for bills and start-up costs.
The Clinton Entrepreneur plan is a piece of an education reform idea that Clinton rolled out to the public in 2015. There are other considerations in the plan geared towards making college more affordable and loan payments easier such as capping a loan repayment at no more than 10% of the new graduates income.
Clinton is vocal about college concerns. “As a student in Nevada said to me, the hardest thing about going to college should not be paying for it. My plan would enable anyone to go to college or university tuition free. You would not have to borrow money for tuition.”
The Clinton Plan, all of it, as well as the entrepreneur component, has problems with the largest being the way the plan will be paid for beyond non specific tax increases. She is not specific about how these necessary monies will be obtained. It is estimated by several think tanks that her plan would cost a whooping $350 billion dollars. Those in the know feel that the Republicans would have a hard time approving any part of the Clinton plan.
It is true that the loan condition in the United States is alarming, and it is also true that those who wish to attend college to pursue an entrepreneur degree or any degree should be able to do so. Lack of money should not limit one’s goals for a career. The Clinton plan is a good starting place for dialogue about student loans, but it may need many adjustments and changes before it would be accepted…. maybe an entrepreneur could develop a better plan!