SHARECOMMENTMORE

COLUMBUS -- Average student-loan debt for graduating college students in Ohio is on the rise.

A report by the Project on Student Debt said Ohio students who borrowed for college and earned a bachelor's degree in 2011 graduated with an average of $28,683.

That's the seventh highest in the nation and a 3.5-percent increase over 2010.

The Columbus Dispatch (http://bit.ly/R1gPEW ) reports that the Ohio average is nearly 8 percent higher than the national average. Like the previous year, 68 percent of the state's 2011 graduates left school with at least some student-loan debt.

Ohio Board of Regents Chancellor Jim Petro said he will continue to push Ohio's public colleges to keep their costs down and find ways to move students through school more quickly to reduce their debt.