Paying off student loans ranks high on list of accomplishments for 25-34 year-olds

Just getting your career started? Which accomplishments are most important to you?


If the image of owning a home with a two-car garage doesn’t immediately pop into your head, you’re not alone. A new survey found that while adults ages 25 to 34 indeed rank ‘buying first home’ high on list of accomplishments,’paying off student loans’ was ranked ahead other commonly cited achievements  like ‘getting a promotion.’


Which of the following accomplishments is or would be the most meaningful to you?


This was the question posed in a survey conducted on November 16th, 2015, to 265 U.S.-based online respondents age 25-34 years old about a list of common career and finance-related accomplishments. Number two on the list was ‘paying off student loans’, beating out both ‘graduating from college’ and ‘getting first job out of college.’


Results for 25-34 year-olds.



Student debt is weighted heavily for this age bracket. This makes sense as the older half of the Millennial generation was just entering the workforce during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Grappling with stagnant wages and record amounts of student debt, this generation has had to put off decisions like buying a home or starting a family. The anticipation of being debt-free can feel like a major life accomplishment.




Paying off student debt is even more important to females than males. 27.5% of females in the survey listed ‘paying off student loans’ as their most meaningful accomplishment. This score is nearly twice that of males in the same age group who listed both “getting a promotion” (23.5%) and “graduating college” (22.3%) ahead of “paying off student loans” (15.0%). This data has compelling implications to any employer seeking to close the gender gap. Numerous studies have shown that gender-diverse business perform better financially than those dominated by one gender. 



Most companies currently don’t have a seat at the table when it comes to helping employees pay back their student loans. A couple implications for employers to consider:

  • Paying off student loan debt ranks among the most important accomplishments for working Millennials
  • This resonates even more with females

Peanut Butter helps top employers offer a unique student loan benefit to attract and retain Millennial employees.

By making modest contributions to employee student loans, companies can help employees avoid substantial amounts of principal and interest, helping them get out of debt years sooner than they otherwise would.

The attraction of lower student debt can increase quantity and quality of job applicants, while the result of lower student loan debt can materially improve employee loyalty.

Learn more at, or get started today by creating your company’s student loan repayment plan.