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Unemployed law grad figures out how to pay off $108K in student debt

Posted Jul 15, 2013 10:12 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Thomas McGregor had $108,000 in student loans when he graduated in 2008 from the University of St. Thomas law school in Minnesota.

He couldn’t find a job and ended up working in his family’s roofing distribution business for $15 an hour. Then he came up with a solution to his looming debt: He joined the Army. CNNMoney has McGregor’s story.

McGregor’s private loan interest rate was capped at 6 percent during his service because of the Soldier Relief Act, the story says. The Army College Loan Repayment Program paid down $65,000 of his loans, and McGregor used his Army salary to pay off the rest. By 2012, he was debt-free.

McGregor earned a higher Army salary because he went to Officer Candidate School. He was deployed to Iraq for two months and to Afghanistan for nearly a year. "I paid off $108,000 of law school loan debt," McGregor told CNNMoney. "All I had to do was put my life on the line."

Updated on July 21 to correct typo.


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