UW Credit Union Extends Its Reach in Helping Wisconsin Residents with Student Debt
Madison, WI – September 23, 2016 – UW Credit Union is committed to the financial success of Wisconsin students and is the leader among all credit unions nationwide in providing lending solutions to members attending an institution of higher education. In order for the credit union to provide additional Wisconsin residents with access to more options to manage education expenses, the UW Credit Union Board of Directors approved a change in membership eligibility. In addition to UW System past or present students, now any Wisconsin resident who is currently enrolled or has attended any accredited institution of higher education can do business with UW Credit Union.
"UW Credit Union has been a Wisconsin and nationwide leader in educational lending," said President & CEO Paul Kundert. "It has been important for us to offer our members the opportunity to meet their tuition funding gap as well as refinance and consolidate their student loans after attendance with consumer-friendly rates and terms." The Office of Credit Unions Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) certified the change on September 8, 2016.
UW Credit Union is represented as a member of the Governor's Council on Financial Literacy under DFI, which has focused on the issue of student debt. "We discussed with DFI officials and other Council members about the need for consumer-friendly student loan refinance options and felt we could be of greater help by expanding eligibility of our services to more Wisconsin residents," said Kundert.
According to credit bureau data, about 781,000 Wisconsin consumers owe a balance on at least one student loan as of June 30, 2016. The majority of these loans are owed to the U.S Government. "It doesn't always make sense for consumers to refinance existing loans; however, many borrowers in the workforce may qualify for lower interest rates as well as better loan terms," said Kundert. In June, the credit union added Debt Protection to its private student loans. At no cost to the borrower, this new loan feature protects families with up to $50,000 of a borrower’s outstanding loan balance if the borrower passes away.
About UW Credit Union
UW Credit Union is a growing, federally insured financial institution and a leading provider of a full range of financial services to University of Wisconsin communities. UW Credit Union's 505 employees serve the financial needs of more than 218,000 members through world-class technology systems, and through a convenient network of 24 branch locations and over 100 ATMs. With assets totaling $2.2 billion, UW Credit Union is ranked nationally among the leading credit unions. Founded more than 80 years ago by members of the University of Wisconsin community, UW Credit Union continues to operate as a not-for-profit, member-owned financial cooperative with locations in the Madison, Milwaukee, Stevens Point, Green Bay, Oshkosh, Whitewater and La Crosse areas.