Student Loans Pack Surprising Benefits

If you have a financial burden, it's worthwhile to look at its bright sides, too.

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"Any kind of debt you have, whether it's a credit card or a student loan, contributes to your credit status," says Suzanna de Baca, vice president of wealth strategies at Ameriprise Financial. "I wouldn't suggest a student take out a loan specifically to help build good credit, but if they use it wisely, then it can have a positive impact on their credit and on their ability to borrow in the future." 

[Use these three tips to protect your credit rating.] 

4. Train for the future: You will have already graduated by the time your loan is due, but the process of paying back your student loans can serve as a post-graduate prep course in adult financial literacy. 

"I'm a lot more responsible with my finances because of knowing I have this loan," says Alex Williams, who used loans to partially finance both his undergraduate degree and M.B.A. from Salisbury University in Maryland. "Managing my money is a lot easier knowing that I have this looming debt—but it's not overbearing." 

Despite built-in grief often associated with the process of taking out student loans, the financial burden can also double as training in what is—and isn't—a worthy investment now and in the future. 

"I think of it as the best investment that I could have made," Feldman says. "This is good debt that I'm trying to pay off." 

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