EASTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) - Commissioner of Higher Education Richard Freeland testified in Boston Tuesday about the increasing cost of higher education.
He told a panel at Suffolk University that the amount of student loan debt for graduates of public colleges and universities in Massachusetts is up by 27 percent.
And student loan debt was a big concern for parents and high school students at tonight's college fair at Easthampton High School.
The students had the chance to meet with representatives more than 140 colleges.
Many students who spoke with 22News are optimistic but they're parents are a little more apprehensive.
Emily Stamm of Northampton told 22News, "Most of the colleges I'm looking at offer a lot of financial aid, merit scholarships and they're usually willing to meet your needs."
Michelle Connelly of Easthampton explained, "I have one in college at UMass. Part of the reason he ended up there was because of financial aid and that he didn't get enough aid from other places. I'm very concerned about the debt that he has."
In 2011, the average University of Massachusetts student graduated with $26,800 in loans.