Inside a swanky New York party for graduates who paid off their student loans

May 1, 2018 | | MarketWatch |

SoFi, known for its student loan refinancing products, treated its newly debt-free customers to cocktails on a rooftop bar and restaurant. [...] 

The posh festivities highlight how we talk about student debt—as something that can be avoided, whittled away or even defeated through smart money choices and sheer force of will—but also masks an uncomfortable reality. “As with many things in our economy, there’s a tale of two Americas when it comes to student debt,” said Mark Huelsman, a senior policy analyst at Demos, a left-leaning think tank. 
 

On one side of the student debt story are those that our college finance system has truly crippled: Borrowers who leave school with debt and no degree or graduate with degrees worth little in the labor market, or benefit less from their degree simply because of where they came from. [...]

And on the other side? The customers SoFi has traditionally targeted: So-called HENRYs—or high earners, not rich yet—with good credit and a steady income for whom student debt was a decent investment in themselves; their student loans are certainly a challenge, but one they’ll likely overcome. [...]

“Events like this indicate that there are some people with student debt who are a very attractive market for these companies,” Huelsman said.