Snap CEO Evan Spiegel is playing his part to solve the student loan debt crisis.
Here’s what you need to know.
Spiegel, who co-founded Snapchat, and his wife Miranda Kerr, the CEO of beauty brand KORA Organics, will pay off all student loans for the Class of 2022 from Otis College of Art and Design. Spiegel and Kerr made the donation, which was not disclosed but is reportedly more than $10 million, through the Spiegel Family Fund.
“Otis College of Art and Design is an extraordinary institution that encourages young creatives to find their artistic voices and thrive in a variety of industries and careers,” Spiegel and Kerr said. “It is a privilege for our family to give back and support the Class of 2022, and we hope this gift will empower graduates to pursue their passions, contribute to the world, and inspire humanity for years to come.”
Otis President Charles Hirschhorn announced the donation, which is the largest in the school’s history, at the commencement ceremony in Los Angeles. There are approximately 285 graduates in the Class of 2022. Both Spiegel and Kerr as well as Bobby Berk, design expert and Emmy-nominated TV host of “Queer Eye,” received honorary degrees at the ceremony. Spiegel attended classes at Otis during high school before enrolling at Stanford.
“Otis College is incredibly grateful for this historic gift from Miranda Kerr and Evan Spiegel, which will be life-changing for the Class of 2022 and their families,” Hirschhorn said. “Student debt weighs heavily on our diverse and talented graduates. We hope this donation will provide much-deserved relief and empower them to pursue their aspirations and careers, pay this generosity forward, and become the next leaders of our community.”
Otis also will use Spiegel and Kerr’s gift to create the Alternative Loan Debt Repayment Fund, which Otis will use to make charitable gifts to graduating students with similar educational loans secured outside of Otis College. Otis is one of the most diverse colleges in the U.S., with 77% of the student body identifying as a student of color. More than 90% of students receive financial aid.
Student loan cancellation remains a hot topic, particularly as President Joe Biden considers wide-scale student loan cancellation through executive action. Biden could cancel student loans within weeks, although there may be limits on who qualifies for student loan cancellation. There are 45 million student loan borrowers who owe more than $1.7 trillion. In California, where Otis is based, 3.8 million student loan borrowers collectively owe $142 billion of student loan debt.
Student loan relief from the Covid-19 pandemic is scheduled to end on August 31, 2022. For student loan borrowers who are not graduating from Otis this spring, it’s essential to know all your options for student loan repayment. Here are smart ways to pay off student loans and save money: