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Many college students are not earning enough to pay back their student loans, because they choose majors that pay too little upon graduation, and 15 percent of college grads are still paying back student loans at age 50, Peter Morici, University of Maryland Economics Professor, said Thursday.

College graduates owe on average $25,000 when they finish school, Morici said, and in some cases, graduates can rack up debt close to six figures.

“You know, if you go to a liberal arts college, and your family has reasonably decent means, but not enough to qualify for really substantial financial aid, you can get up close to six figures if you work at it, though it’s unusual. The bottom line is though is that graduates are not earning enough money to reasonably service their loans in many majors,” he said.

Student loan debt has surpassed credit card debt and auto debt, according to the Federal Reserve Bank. Americans 60 and over owe $36 million, and more than 15 percent are still paying back student loans at age 50.

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