Indiana Mother's Student Loan Debt Almost Prevents Daughter From Enrolling In College

Paula Rogo Aug, 12, 2018

The student loans of an Indiana woman may now be coming to haunt her a decade later when she couldn’t help her daughter out of a financial bind to start college.

According to Fox59,  Nayya Martinique tried to move into her new dorm as a freshman at Spelman College last week after driving for hours from Indianapolis to Atlanta. But she quickly found out that she could not move in until she paid the last $4000 of her tuition bill.

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But as Martinique sat at the college’s financial aid office, she found out that she had already taken out as many loans as she possibly could. 

“I was just excited to move in and go to college,” she said.

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Things did not get better when her mother, teacher and veteran Tjai Downs, tried to step in to help. It was then that Downs found out that years of neglected student loan debt had negatively affected her credit, and she could not apply for a loan. 

“When we got to Spelman, that is when I became aware of this outstanding balance that was stopping me from being able to take out a loan for her,” Downs told Fox59. The debt stems from personal school loans she took out while attending the University of Louisville 10 years ago.

She blames the entire mess to a change in address and believes that the loan paperwork was being sent to an old address.

“This is a small thing that happened so many years ago but has reared its ugly head and I think a tweak in my own organization skills would have helped prevent this situation,” she said.

Luckily, Downs was able to create a successful GoFundMe fundraiser that has so far raised $4790 in four days, just in time for the college’s August 15 deadline next week. 

A recent study found that Black women are the demographic burdened the most by the student loan debt crisis in the United States, having taken on the biggest debt load for the longest amount of time.