Lending giants U.S. Bank and JPMorgan Chase recently announced they had eliminated and reduced their private student lending programs, respectively. JPMorgan Chase will only make private student loans for existing customers.

Meanwhile, credit unions are demonstrating a strong commitment to helping students finance their education through private student loans, said New York City-based student lending vendor Fynanz, which provides credit unions with customized student lending programs and the cuStudentLoans private student loan marketplace. Fynanz, a CUNA Strategic Services alliance provider, has gained about 75 new credit union partners in the past year, bringing its total credit union partner number to more than 180.

"Private student lending has experienced significant change over the past several years," said Wes Millar, senior vice president for CUNA Strategic Services, a program jointly owned by CUNA and state credit union leagues. "Credit unions have created a strong foundation in student lending during this period and will remain steadfast in supporting students and families nationwide."

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Natasha Chilingerian

Natasha Chilingerian has been immersed in the credit union industry for over a decade. She first joined CU Times in 2011 as a freelance writer, and following a two-year hiatus from 2013-2015, during which time she served as a communications specialist for Xceed Financial Credit Union (now Kinecta Federal Credit Union), she re-joined the CU Times team full-time as managing editor. She was promoted to executive editor in 2019. In the earlier days of her career, Chilingerian focused on news and lifestyle journalism, serving as a writer and editor for numerous regional publications in Oregon, Louisiana, South Carolina and the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition, she holds experience in marketing copywriting for companies in the finance and technology space. At CU Times, she covers People and Community news, cybersecurity, fintech partnerships, marketing, workplace culture, leadership, DEI, branch strategies, digital banking and more. She currently works remotely and splits her time between Southern California and Portland, Ore.