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View Diary: Obama administration targets for-profit college debt factories (86 comments)

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  •  They need to cut off student loans for all (21+ / 0-)

    for-profit institutions. Period. It's another case of socializing losses and privatizing profits.

    If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

    by AoT on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 08:29:37 AM PDT

    •  At the same time, this is better than nothing n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dclawyer06

      If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

      by AoT on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 08:31:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed on both points...n/t (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, mcstowy
      •  There is something better (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JuliathePoet

        The education system continues to overlook serving students who do not have a means or desire to attend college.  At least not in the foreseeable future.
            When will we wise up and establish Technical High Schools where someone who meets the above situation or is a person "at risk" of leaving HS and give them some skills and tools that when they leave HS they can go into a job and not just flip hamburgers.  Think of it:  your parents do not want to foot the bill for college like Mitt Romney suggests, you do not want the debt and you study for 4 years to do what?  The curriculum in the average HS assumes you will go to college.
            I'm a product of a Technical HS.  It was Federal, State and City financed, a holdover from Post WWII.  Freshman year was "Trade Exploratory" where you tried out 3 or more fields.  You decide what you wanted and the school evaluated you for competency.  I did 3 years in Electronics and carried the same basic curriculum as a City HS with the addition of  technical training.  I carried enough credits to attend any College and during my working career graduated from College and also completed my Masters when I could 14 years later.  I was offered several well paying jobs before HS graduation.  In my 40 year career, I was as high in pay as was possible in the organization.
            Last, there is a study that suggests someone who attends a quality Technical High School and goes directly into the job market can earn more in by their 65th birthday than most college grads.  Think, immediate income and no student loans to pay off.  A career that does not get stale and requires more formal education unlike engineering and the medical fields.  Someone on the ball can break away and start his own business a lot easier than most.
            What fields should be considered?  The sky is the limit.  Coordinate with industry and the Chamber of Commerce.  Electronics techs, Software techs, Computer techs, Electrician, plumbing, auto, architectural graphics on a Cad Cam machine. Many soft sciences in medical fields such as lab techs, X-Ray techs and operators, you name it.  What cannot be completed to earn a State or Federal certificate they will be years ahead of their peers completing the education.

        •  Yes! Technical HS, that still have academics: (0+ / 0-)

          My 1st husband went to a tech high school that still had high standards. He graduated in the mid 907,  and along with acceptance letters to college, he was a trained CNA.  We wouldn't have had health care in college, without his ability to work for employers who needed his skills and provided real health plans, not just plans that most colleges offer that only cover major medical.

          My 2nd husband graduated from a trade high school in the early 800.  He was both a skilled carpenter and mechanic, who got a strong math background. A broken leg, while in the Air Force, got him sent to a computer school, since he wasn't much use to his commander, who needed mechanics whose legs didn't get in the way of being a mechanic. The math from high school paid off, and he kept learning as he went, in the military and for employers with military contracts who needed guys who understood why military computers worked the way they did. I don't think he ever worked as a master carpenter, his specialty in high school, but he loves making and fixing, beautiful furniture.

          So few schools have technical and vocational programs these days, and it is a huge loss. I am always glad when I hear of a new one opening, and hope that people start seeing them as an important part of making sure that everyone has a skill to fall back on.

    •  You need to get the Belgian system (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, mcstowy, brentut5

      Students pay €600 a year, less if they are poor.

      I ride the wild horse .

      by BelgianBastard on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 09:01:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  For a while (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, susakinovember, mcstowy

        Tuition in France was completely subsidized. The government later introduced a charge of about 100 euros, just to discourage perpetual students.

      •  In California it was less than that (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mmacdDE, RadGal70, mcstowy, RUNDOWN

        for a long time. The goal was to make it free.

        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

        by AoT on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 09:15:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks to St. Ronnie (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, mcstowy, annieli, RUNDOWN
          Ronald Reagan made the University of California a major punching bag of his 1966 campaign for governor of California, with the encouragement of FBI director J. Edgar Hoover, who saw campus peace activists as dangerous subversives. Upon taking office, Reagan managed to have UC president Clark Kerr fired—he had been the architect of mass higher education not just in California, but across the country—and hiked fees at the UC colleges to the approximate levels of tuition charged elsewhere.
      •  Some state universities actually cost less (0+ / 0-)

        2 year community colleges are usually much less and the credits transfer to Universities knocking off 2 years of higher costs for a four year degree.
        Students in the US are also eligible for private, federal and privet grants that do not have to be paid back.
        There are also scholarships that pay everything for athletes, academic scholars and in some cases deserving low income students.
        The US military academies are free to those who plan to be officers in the various branches of the US armed forces.
        Also the military will pay for their own enlisted and offers to get a degree and for veterans the military has benefits that help pay for school.
        The bottom line is there are many ways to get a free or highly subsidized education in the US.

        •  At least for a while... (0+ / 0-)

          My son had to "pay" to be eligible for the GI Bill. They deducted an extra hundred dollars from his pay for all for years because he wanted to go to college after his hitch. That was in peace time so not sure about now. He went in Jan. of 1999 and got out just before we invaded Iraq. So he ended up paying just under $5k to get about $10k in benefits for serving four years. That most assuredly is not free money but was a good deal for him. Hopefully, since we are in combat, we are offering "free" benefits to those surviving combat that are still able to function passed their PTSD! That is a real bad lottery if they are still charging the folks $100 per month to all of them when most will never benefit.

    •  At least for all for-profit, not degree granting (7+ / 0-)

      institutions

      Those are the worst. Absolute worst. They get students in the door with the promise of a job that never materializes, and they can't even transfer the credits to a regular, degree granting college.

      Nor can they discharge the student loans in bankruptcy. They're completely screwed.

      Ban them, for sure.

      •  Right, if all they give is "certificates" (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, mattc129, RUNDOWN

        rather than degrees, it's even worse.

        "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

        by lgmcp on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 09:29:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  If it's not degree granting (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        dinotrac, mcstowy, RUNDOWN

        it's probably already not eligible to offer federal financial aid.  Those poor students are stuck with private education loans, which are even less forgiving than federally-guaranteed loans.

        "Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom." -- G.W.Carver

        by northbronx on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 09:56:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Can private loans be discharged? (0+ / 0-)

          I suspect not, but they should be dischargable.

          That does, however, put a heavy burden on would-be students.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 10:05:22 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, private student loans cannot be discharged (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dinotrac

            in bankruptcy. There are some conditions under which you can discharge a student loan, but they are very strict and apply to both public and private loans the same.

            If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

            by AoT on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 10:46:23 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Private loans (0+ / 0-)

            typically have worse terms, you have no grace period after graduation, and there's no such thing as a forbearance.  So if you're just barely above water, these guys are going to make it that much harder to keep bailing.  They may or may not be dischargable debt, but they probably will help you get to that point more quickly.

            "Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom." -- G.W.Carver

            by northbronx on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 10:53:15 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I had a couple of private loans going through (0+ / 0-)

              law school, and they gave the same grace period as my federal loans.  Terms were a bit worse, though.

              LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

              by dinotrac on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 11:04:40 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Different states often have different rules (0+ / 0-)

                Private loans can vary between states, and between kinds of institutions. I looked at one program that was run for people who had an AA/AS and wanted a graduate degree. You were guaranteed a spot in the graduate program going in, which seemed great, until the fine print showed that you couldn't leave with just the bachelor's degree, and since the whole program was considered "graduate school," all of the financial aid was private student loans, with no grant or federal subsidized loans while an undergrad. When I talked to a few other schools, it became obvious that I would pay more than twice as much in the "guaranteed" program, than if I stuck to finishing my BA/BS,  and then applied to grad school.

      •  And promise outrageous earnings from those jobs (0+ / 0-)

        In vocational fields, like medical assistant, or auto mechanic - whose earnings never reach the levels advertised.

        While charging the equivalent of professional degrees.

        “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” ... Voltaire

        by RUNDOWN on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 08:30:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The true crime here.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT

      is that a major portion of this problem is impacting poor and minority students, lured by TV ads holding out the promise of higher education.

      It is not that that promise isn't worthwhile....just that those holding it out have far less interest in making it reality than they do in getting those prospective students to sign up for federal loans.

      There have been earlier attempts to crack down on this problem and sadly, the Congressional reaction came heavily from GOP members of Congress, often fueled by campaign contributions from the industry, claiming that it was an effort to deny educational opportunity to the poor and minorities.

      The above link is to a 2011 Op-Ed piece in Roll Call by the Chairman and CEO of one of those schools, repeating GOP claims of a witch hunt.  Incidentally, he was paid over $3 MILLION a year for that job in cash and stock.

      It also rounded up political support by making contributions....to the Urban League, for example, even as its practices were questioned by numerous state attorneys general.

      Controls are badly needed, but under the present structure of Congress, there is lots of money floating around and the screwing of student loan programs continues.

      Free markets would be a great idea, if markets were actually free.

      by dweb8231 on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 10:20:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  God, I just had a horrible thought (0+ / 0-)

        I won't be surprised if we start seeing these loans going to people to enroll in more expensive charter schools, thus completing the cycle of horribleness.

        If knowledge is power and power corrupts, does that mean that knowledge corrupts?

        by AoT on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 10:47:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think Federal money should be used to (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT

          support ANY post secondary school (college, etc) unless the institution is certified by some reputable body. I know the loans are supposed to be supporting the students, but when a student graduates without the skills needed to get a keep a decent job, all the support has really accomplished is cheating the student by trapping him in serious debt.

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