Updated: 08/23/2013 8:27 PM
Created: 08/23/2013 4:02 PM WHEC.com
By: Berkeley Brean
President Obama’s two-day education road show continued through central New York today.
The president had a town hall meeting at SUNY Binghamton this afternoon. He got a lot of questions about federal financial aid for colleges and he continued to talk about lowering the cost of higher education.
It's a continuation of what the president focused on during his visit to the University at Buffalo on Thursday.
News10NBC was in Buffalo yesterday for his speech and today we dug a little deeper into some of these ideas to make college affordable.
College is still the single best investment people can make in their future. The unemployment rate for Americans with a college degree is one-third lower than the national average and incomes for Americans with at least a college degree is more than twice those of Americans without a high school diploma.
But how do you pay for that investment? That is one of the greatest concerns for parents of students including those who moved in to their dorms at the College at Brockport today.
Diane Dejoseph helped her daughter move in on Friday. They are paying tuition with federal and state loans.
One of the president’s ideas is to expand the program called Pay as you Earn. Right now it caps the amount of student loan re-payment to 10-percent of their post-college income. Only a fraction of students with federal college loans are eligible. The president wants to make every graduate eligible.
President Obama said, “So if you went to college, you took out debt, you want to be a teacher, and starting salary of a teacher is $35,000, well only 10-percent of that amount is what your loan repayment is. Now if you make more money, you should be paying more back.”
We asked Dejoseph if she was worried about the debt when her daughter graduates. She said, “I worried about her having a college degree and still not having a job to pay off the debt. Yes. I am concerned about that.”
The president also talked about pressuring colleges to use online technology to speed up the learning process as a way to save money.
In the newsroom -- we've joked that you could cut college costs by 25-percent if you just made college three years and not four. We asked it as a serious question to the provost at the College at Brockport. Press play on the video player below to hear his answer.