AFter graduating college, my simple advice is this.
ONce you step out into the adult world, you will quickly accumulate bills or all shapes and sizes. It will be tricky to stay on top of it all, and some times it can be a bit depressing to see your new and beautiful full-time paycheck flying away days after you earned it. Don't despair! The solution is easy. It all comes down to paying now. Don't wait until graduating to start chipping away at a loan. Do you have extra money? Is there something you can live without? Put that money to good use and stick it to the loan, if possible be consistent! The loan might feel like a financial blackhole, but eventually it will shrink. If I would have done this from the get go, I would not be shedding a tear of sadness every time I got paid knowing that I had to give up precious dollars to an invisible hole I dug over the course of two years.
SPend money wisely, but even more importantly, start paying that loan! Do you have extra money? I know you do, because I know I do. It may not be much, but every little bit helps. Pour into that loan quickly and consistently and after a couple of years you will be surprised at what you accomplished with a little sacrifice and some extra dollars. My advice says, "pay now, relax later" instead it should say, "pay now, relax sooner".
Best of luck in all you do,
A former student with a current loan