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ASU grads worry about towering debt, job prospects

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PHOENIX -

Graduates may be leaving college with a pile of debt, but the job outlook for them is better than it has been in the past.

It's the good and the bad of graduation.

The good -- many grads we talked to say they're set for after graduation in the way of jobs or grad school. The bad -- many are leaving with a pile of debt.

"It's very exciting but it's also bittersweet," says Kristen.

Students strolled out of graduation commencement at Arizona State University -- diplomas in hand -- ready to tackle the world.

"I'm actually heading to Dallas for a project engineering job with McCarthy Companies starting in June," says Christopher Procopio.

"I'm getting my masters in prosthetics and orthotics," says Paulina Velez-Burgos.

Some we talked to are heading back to school -- others are looking forward to starting in the job market.

And if those grads are looking to stay in Phoenix, a recent survey says that's not a bad idea. Phoenix ranks as one of the top 10 locations for grads to live post-college because of lower housing prices and good job prospects, according to Kiplingers.com.

But with the good comes the bad. According to Consumer Reports, two-thirds of students graduating carry some sort of debt greater than $20,000.

"I didn't know starting out that I would have to take out that many loans," says Manuel Lopez.

"It's such a catch 22 situation. it's like I need to get an education to get a job and go into the workforce but it's going to be a pain paying those loans back it's like I have to get a job really quick here to pay those loans back," says Cory Lemke.

Many we talked said they're just happy to land a job.

Speaking of the job market for grads, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employees, the average salary for a graduate grew 5.3 percent this year -- bringing that average salary close to $45,000.


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