BGSU student loan default rate lowest among peer universities in Ohio

 At 2.5 percent, the 2003 student loan default rate for BGSU is the lowest among the 13 public, four-year state universities in Ohio, according to newly released U.S. Department of Education statistics. The figures are the most recent available.

Craig Cornell, director of Student Financial Aid, attributed Bowling Green's comparatively low rate to several factors.

"We work very closely with students to help them understand their lending responsibilities," Cornell said, and "they're taking it seriously." Success in reducing the rate is testimony to the students and their values, as well as what they learn at BGSU and the jobs they're able to acquire after graduation, he added.

The BGSU rate, down from 4.1 percent the previous year, means that only 96 of 3,778 student borrowers who began repayment between Oct. 1, 2002, and Sept. 30, 2003, defaulted on their loans by September 2004. Rates at Bowling Green's peer, in-state institutions ranged from 2.6 percent at Shawnee State University to 6.1 percent at the University of Toledo.

Nationwide, the 2003 average default rate was 3.3 percent among students at public, four-year institutions and 4.5 percent for all college students. Those figures were down from 4 percent and 5.2 percent, respectively, the preceding year.