Nationwide — Dr. Tisa Silver Canady knows what it costs to strive for academic excellence. As a financial wellness expert with three degrees under her belt, she’s become intimately acquainted with how it feels to be a person of color navigating the financial aid system in this country.
But as a student loan strategist who has advised students on how to pay back over $50 million in student loans, she’s also seen how inherent systemic inequities make school more costly for Black borrowers. Even without the impacts of the coronavirus, student loan debt will negatively impact many Black students’ abilities to build future wealth because Black students are more at risk than other groups. In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, she is concerned that this already disadvantaged group may experience further setbacks.
“Not everyone is good at virtual studying, not everyone has a strong WiFi connection, not everyone has a quiet space to learn,” Dr. Tisa says. “The pandemic is absolutely going to affect the success of students, and any disruptions stand to affect Black students even more because they are already more vulnerable. It may mean they have to repeat classes, stay in school longer, and ultimately end up borrowing more.”