What Next

Billionaire Gifts Can’t Fix College Debt

The gift from Robert F. Smith is a generous one, but it shows how the system of paying for college needs an overhaul.

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Over the weekend, billionaire Robert F. Smith ended his commencement address to the Morehouse Class of 2019 with an extraordinary pledge: He would pay off the entire class’s student debt. Smith’s pledge will undoubtedly transform the lives of those students, but what about everyone else? What does student debt relief look like on a national scale? And what can we learn from studying the Morehouse Class of 2019?

Guest: Jordan Weissmann, Slate’s senior business and economics correspondent.

Podcast production by Mary Wilson, Jayson De Leon, and Ethan Brooks.