09/28/2012 02:23 pm ET

Student Debt Poll: Current Students Confident They'll Be Able To Repay Loans, SIFE USA Finds

Student debt leaves plenty to be depressed about, but a new poll finds people who have loans overwhelmingly remain optimistic.

According to a new poll of SIFE USA members released by Wells Fargo, 71 percent of students who borrowed money to attend college feel confident that the cost of their education will be worth it. The poll found 71 percent feel confident they'll be able to repay their debt, and 78 percent of students would rather borrow money than not attend college.

Earlier this week, Pew Research Center released a study finding a record number of households have student debt and the number is higher among young people. In 2001, 26 percent of households under age 35 had student debt, but that number is up to 40 percent now.

The Education Department's data shows student loan defaults are on the rise as well.

The new SIFE USA poll sheds some light on part of the reason why so many students are borrowing for college these days; just 44 percent of all of the students indicated their family had a plan to pay for college prior to their higher education career.

The students in the poll who feel college is worth it, despite their debt, have some data to back it up. A recent Georgetown University study showed workers with a bachelor's degree have netted nearly 200,000 job since 2007, while those with high school diplomas or less lost around 5.6 million jobs during the same period.

SIFE USA describes themselves as "an international non-profit organization that mobilizes college-enrolled, business-focused students to develop community outreach projects designed to improve the quality of life and standard of living of those in need." Their poll sampled 1,494 current college students.