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Mortgage Crisis Impacting Student Loan Industry
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Congressman Joe Courtney says the mortgage crisis is beginning to be felt in the multi-billion dollar student loan market. WNPR's Shomial Ahmad reports.

Congressman Courtney met with University of Connecticut students to advise them on financial aid planning. He suggests students apply early for financial aid options because a noticeable amount of lenders are beginning to drop out of the federally-funded student loan market.

"We don’t want the student loan market to get in a position where it’s caught at a moment when students are looking for debt financing to pay for college and learning that it’s not going to be there."

The State Department of Higher Education says more than 130,000 Connecticut college students tapped into the federal funding for the 2005-2006 academic year.

Courtney, who sits on the U.S. House's Education and Labor Committee, says the Department of Education is currently monitoring the crisis. He wants more urgent action, though.

He also says that the state is lucky to have an alternative to the federal loan program. The 31-million-dollar Connecticut Higher Education Supplemental Loan Authority, or CHESLA, supplies fixed rate higher education loans.