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How paying off student loans became a millennial milestone


Guen Garrido threw herself a balloon-filled party this spring. Afterward, she booked a well-deserved massage.

It wasn’t the 34-year-old San Diego resident’s birthday or anniversary, and the celebration wasn’t for anything you’d find on a Hallmark card.

She had just paid off the last of $45,000 in student-loan debt she’d accrued after attending UCLA.

Read more: How grad schools became the hidden culprit behind America’s student-debt crisis

The class of 2019 was the last of the millennials to graduate college, and like other members of their generation, many took out loans to pay for the ballooning cost of education. Now, those who’ve paid off the last of their installments are throwing parties, posting videos, and going on vacations to celebrate the feat. amounting to $1.5 trillion in student debt nationwide.

Business Insider spoke to six people who celebrated paying their student loans with parties, vacations, music videos — an act that they say has likened paying off student loans as a milestone in itself.

“I definitely believe paying off student loans has become a millennial milestone,” Garrido told Business Insider over email. “Paying them off, especially while under 40 years old, I think is a pretty big deal.”


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