DePasquale wants the state to create an independent "Office of Student Loan Advocate."

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

HARRISBURG, Pa. (KDKA) — The average student loan debt in Pennsylvania is now more than $37,000, the second-highest total in the country.

The numbers were released Thursday by state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, who is calling for more help for students struggling to pay for college. DePasquale wants the state to create an independent “Office of Student Loan Advocate.”

“A student loan advocate at the state level could help students and families better understand all their options when it comes to paying for higher education, as well as the pitfalls of taking on too much debt,” DePasquale said.

His recommendation came on the same day he released a follow-up audit of the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency.