Drew is the son of a small business owner in Eau Claire, WI. Due to the recession, his family had to make tough decisions to make sure their engineering service could make it through. They’ve worked hard and have lived within their means, but one thing was clear: Drew was not going to be asking his parents for money to go to college.
"The idea that Romney can recommend students to 'borrow money from your parents' - that's not realistic for small town America... that's just not something you do. In my case, that's a joke and frustrating to hear."
This fall, Drew enters his senior year at Marquette. "My college experience has been made possible through the aid I receive on all levels. While state and Marquette financial aid makes attending college affordable, the difference maker is the federal loans I receive. These loans allow me to be comfortable with my financial situation."
During his first term, President Obama doubled the number of Pell Grants available to students so that Drew, and now nearly 10 million students, can benefit from Pell Grants. To supplement for food, rent and books, Drew has "been fortunate enough to find campus leadership positions and a paid internship in my field."
Now Drew is looking ahead to his future and hopes to continue with the agency he is interning with after graduation.
"If I had to make my college decision based based on tuition and not the career I want, I wouldn't be at Marquette and I wouldn't be able to work an entry-level job in my field of choice."
"I know that I am going to have options when it comes to repaying these loans and know that the government is not looking to make a profit off of my education, rather, it will provide me ample opportunity to do something my parents were never able to, graduate from college."
President Obama has worked to make higher education affordable. The “Pay As You Earn” program gives recent graduates the ability to re-pay their loans responsibly while also protecting their own futures – capping their monthly federal student loan repayment at 10% of monthly discretionary income.
Drew is looking forward to senior year and entering the working world:
"The graduating class when I was a freshman had a lot harder time finding employment near the pursuit of their major, but my friends in this past year's class have had particular success finding fully employed jobs in their field."
"I continue to support our president because he learned to pay back hundred of thousands of dollars for an education, by himself, and wants to make certain that student loans do not burden students right out the gate."
If you're a young American like Drew that benefits from student loans and appreciates President Obama's commitment to making college more affordable, commit to vote today.