In 2021, Google will begin matching student loans up to $2,500 per year, which the company says will help them pay off their loans faster and also use money for other things, "whether it’s purchasing a new home, starting a family, or investing in a 401(k)," according to the blog.
Google cites the "enormous" student loan deficit in the U.S., with the $1.5 trillion total now being double what it was in 2010 and the burden unequally falling on women and people of color. An average Black graduate, the blog post says, tends to have $25,000 more in debt than white students after spending four years earning a Bachelor's degree.
Google then goes on to cite some of its past accomplishments in the field, including the new suite of Google Career Certificates introduced in July to aid Americans in getting qualifications for high-paying jobs without a college degree. Google says it plans to consider those certificates equally to how it would consider a college degree.
In addition, the company says it's working with vendors and staffing partners on providing base-level education benefits for those working on Google-related projects for the beginning of next year.
Student loans were yet another facet of life disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The CARES Act attempted to help with loans by suspending payments for six months, but ended up only covering those who got their loans from the federal government. PYMNTS reports that around 43 million people got their loans from the federal government.
That doesn't help the 7 million or so of those people whose loans were technically held by banks, credit unions or some other private entity, though.
And, the CARES Act overlooked a large swathe of borrowers whose loans were purely or mostly privately held, according to a report cited by PYMNTS.