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Learn more about Ascendium and one of our important roles as a leading postsecondary education philanthropy. We focus on elevating opportunities and outcomes for learners from low-income backgrounds so they can better achieve their education and career goals.

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Ascendium is the nation’s largest federal student loan guarantor, a leading postsecondary education philanthropy and a provider of solutions to support academic achievement, long-term financial wellness and student loan repayment success.

Our philanthropic mission is to elevate opportunities and outcomes for learners from low-income backgrounds to access and achieve postsecondary education, workforce training and career success. As a nonprofit organization, we’ve provided counseling and tools to help millions of borrowers nationwide avoid default or resolve it.

Based in Wisconsin since 1967, we’ve taken numerous opportunities to partner with Wisconsin-based and nationwide organizations. The common thread is helping people to succeed in higher education and workforce training on a variety of fronts. Most recently, we were awarded the Equitable Recovery Grant from the Wisconsin Department of Administration to fund the Student Loan Start Over® program and help people in Milwaukee County overcome their federal student loan default. The program is included in our Wisconsin Covenant designation, representing our commitment to Wisconsin.

The impact of student loan default on a borrower’s life is serious (e.g., collection costs, wage garnishment, tax refund offsets and limited access to federal student aid and its benefits). Overall, default further expands existing inequities and disparities around education achievement, housing, employment and economic security.

Our Valuable Experience

Over the past 50+ years, we’ve gained valuable insight in how best to assist student loan borrowers. We’re honored to help make a significant and lasting impact on people in Milwaukee County who defaulted on their federal student loans.