The knowledge of being in-debt for years after graduation has created this idea, amongst many of my peers, that we can't build up any of our own savings. I've challenged that notion with a system that contributes to savings while helping me stay on top of student loan balances.
Just because you have student loans doesn't mean you can't save
By working one extra shift each month, I pocket $75 that more than covers interest accruing on my unsubsidized loans. I then throw the remaining into a fund that will grow at rates higher in the long-run than that of my student loans, not to be touched until after graduation.
Most students have a choice in what their student loan balance looks like after graduation.