Feds: Sub-prime-style lenders burying college students in mountains of debt

Lots of reaction around the country to a damning report released today from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the U.S. Department of Education on the shady tactics and misleading practices of the private student loan market.

According to the bureau, outstanding student loan debt topped $1 trillion in 2011 — $864 billion of federal student debt and approximately $150 billion of private student loan debt.

Among the findings in the report:

•Private student loans are riskier: Used appropriately, private student loans have a role to play in financing higher education. However, compared to federal student loans, private student loans often lack repayment flexibility and other protections when borrowers are struggling to make ends meet. Most private loans have few options for payment modification or forbearance. Federal loans have a fixed interest rate and most private loans have variable rates, making estimates about future debt payments difficult. Prior to 2010, federal law did not require a disclosure showing the actual interest rate on a borrower’s loan until after the lender documented the loan, approved the credit, and readied the check for mailing.

•Lax underwriting practices rise during boom: Some lenders bypassed school financial aid offices and marketed loans directly to students. As a result, in many cases, the school could not review the borrower’s financial need, compare it to the loan amount, or even verify that the borrower was enrolled. Many lenders also lowered the minimum credit score required to receive a private student loan so that they could originate and then sell off more loans. Many students did not understand the differences and features between federal and private loans. They ended up using riskier private loans before exhausting their safer federal options.

•Borrowers are trapped after bust: Defaults on private student loans have increased since the financial crisis. Based on the CFPB’s sample, there are now over $8.1 billion in defaulted private loans, representing more than 850,000 distinct loans. Congress amended the bankruptcy code in 2005 to make it tougher to discharge private student loans. There is little to no evidence that there was an improvement in price and it is unclear that there was an increase in access to credit as a result of these changes. Borrowers reported their lenders were unable or unwilling to modify or adjust repayment terms.

“Our findings reveal that students were yet another group of consumers that were hurt by the boom and bust of the financial crisis,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray in a statement. “Too many student loan borrowers are struggling to pay off private student loans that they did not understand and cannot afford. Moving forward, we must do our best to leave the next generation in a better place than we are today, rather than buried under a mountain of debt.”

“Subprime-style lending went to college and now students are paying the price,” said U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan. “We still have some work to do to ensure that students who take out private student loans have the same kinds of protections offered by federal loans. In the meantime, if you have to take out a loan to pay for college, federal student aid should be your first option.”

Here is a statement from Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, chairman of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions:

“With student loan debt at a record level, we must empower students and families to make informed decisions about how they finance their college education. This is particularly important when it comes to high-risk and high-cost private loans, which can quickly sink students into financial quicksand.

“Today’s report underscores the need for legislation I have sponsored in the Senate to educate students about their federal financial aid options before they turn to private student loans, which could lower default rates and curb unnecessary debt. It also highlights the need to provide relief to students by making private loans dischargeable in bankruptcy again just like all other forms of private debt, which pending legislation I’ve cosponsored would accomplish.

“The findings in this report are especially troubling for students attending for-profit colleges, who are many times more likely to take out private loans than other students. As Chairman of the HELP Committee, I will carefully examine the report’s recommendations and will continue to work hard to improve college affordability and address the student debt that burdens America’s middle class families. Ensuring that students exhaust their federal aid options before turning to private loans would be a good first step.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

125 comments Add your comment

Ben

July 20th, 2012
5:21 pm

Oohhh. Those poor borrowers. They are just not responsible. This must be the lenders fault.

S. Georgia Teacher

July 20th, 2012
5:25 pm

I have a student loan. I am also paying it back. I borrowed exactly ZERO for graduate school. How? I had a part time job and I paid for classes out of my own pocket. Yes, it took me longer than most, but I came out debt free.

I am so tired of the whining about loan debt. Perhaps instead of going to a pricey private school for ‘Womyns’ Studies” consider a community college and then a second tier university for a real degree that will open real doors. Oh, live at home or in the dorms. Why do you have to have an apartment? Oh yeah, because everyone else does too. I forgot.

So, I suggest get a job if you were not smart enough for scholarships and pay your way through school. I worked in a grocery store; helping customers with less education than I had at the time. It paid off because I was willing to sacrifice to make ends meet.

Stop complaining; stop thinking a degree in nothing will take you somewhere; live frugally.

bootney farnsworth

July 20th, 2012
5:31 pm

its a two tiered problem.

too many lenders are giving loans to people they KNOW cannot pay them back. while I believe in buyer beware, the buyer needs the straightest possible info to make informed decisions.

the other side is too many students are not doing their due diligence and getting in way over their heads.

Ben

July 20th, 2012
5:31 pm

The real issue is the government loans and grants. Colleges used to see that an average incoming student could afford $X. Then they saw that the government was giving out grants and loans to cover $X. So they raised tuition to $2X. So the government decided they should give out more grants and loans.

Basically every dollar the government gives to someone to go to college is an extra dollar colleges will add to their tuition.

It’s trendy to blame private lenders, but it’s the government that holds most of the loans, it’s the government that created the spiral of rising tuition, and it’s the government that conveniently for them made their loans sacrosanct, even in bankruptcy. They didn’t do that to help students, they did that to make it so once they got control over a student’s finances, the student became their wage slave with no way out.

I cannot believe you can look at this issue and say it’s the fault of private lenders.

You notice how they are going to make it so those private loans can be dischargeable in bankruptcy? Why not the government loans? Because it’s about control. This way they can vilify private companies while maintaining the government’s control over students and graduates.

bootney farnsworth

July 20th, 2012
5:32 pm

‘course, the quickest way to slow this crap down is to get the gov’t out of the college loan business altogether.

bootney farnsworth

July 20th, 2012
5:34 pm

@ ben,

mostly correct, but missing one major thing. the gov’t has a not so velvet glove on the whole loan process. failure to issue the right amount of loans to the right amount of demographic of the month brings nothing but grief.

easier to issue the loan you know will fail than fuss with the fed.

bootney farnsworth

July 20th, 2012
5:36 pm

something which was getting a lot of buzz before I was laid off @ GPC was the expectation Obama will forgive student loans in a TARPish action.

Google "NEA" and "union"

July 20th, 2012
5:54 pm

Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), eh?

And where was the Senator when all this—plus FORCING banks to make sub-prime loans to blacks—was going down? Counting the cash campaign contributions rolling in from “civil rights” groups and unions?

Harkin’s been in Congress for as long as most of us have been alive. And for much of that time his party was in the majority.

Burroughston Broch

July 20th, 2012
5:56 pm

This as a parallel of the mortgage fiasco. The borrowers have culpability in this as well. If you borrow a fortune at a high interest rate to attend college and have no reasonable plan on how to pay it off, then you are not college material.

EduKtr

July 20th, 2012
6:01 pm

@Google “NEA” and “union” …

Seems as though your post was there one minute—and gone the next! (Maureen?)

Yes, bankers were no doubt under tremendous pressure, from perhaps some of the same critics above, to extend loans to, especially, minority students despite their circumstances.

[...]  -Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)all 313 news articles » [...]

jd

July 20th, 2012
6:23 pm

It’s not just the private lenders — those sub-prime loans are going to students attending those sub-prime for-profit schools — almost $750 million a year in Ga alone –

Reallyperplexed

July 20th, 2012
6:24 pm

One question:
If we, the citizens and taxpayers of the U.S., bailed out the banks, why don’t they help homeowners with poor credit to refinance and studenst who cannot find jobs after graduation with their loans? Don’t they owe us that much?. I like President Obama but I wished he had made it clear that we would bail the banks out but wih clear stipulations that they were to help us citizens? Do I hear an Amen?

Maureen Downey

July 20th, 2012
6:39 pm

@EduKtr, I spent a year looking at the subprime industry, including looking at pages and pages of mortgage applications. The industry had one motivation for making loans to unqualified borrowers: The loans made money for them. The loans were quickly bundled and sold to Wall Street.
Subprime lenders were knocking on doors in poor neighborhoods, working in conjunction with home remodelers offering deals on new roofs, sun rooms and porches and cheap loans to finance them. Elderly homeowners who had a lot of equity in older homes — but little income — were the prime targets. It was a shocker to see how many of these bad loans carried false incomes, incomes that the elderly homeowners never would have claimed. In some cases, these homeowners were called day and night by lenders trying to get them to refinance.

A federal review of the mortgage crisis examined the spurious claim that you make that the government was to blame for forcing banks to make loans to unqualified borrowers by virtue of the Community Reinvestment Act :

But as Phil Angelides, chairman of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, wrote in the AJC:

As the crisis unfolded, some blamed the Community Reinvestment Act as a driving force in the subprime mortgage disaster. That 1977 law was aimed at ending “redlining” by banks — the practice of denying credit to individuals and businesses in certain neighborhoods without regard to their creditworthiness. The law requires banks and savings and loans to lend, invest, and provide services to the communities in which they take deposits, consistent with bank safety and soundness.

The debate about the role of the CRA should now be over as the evidence presented in the commission’s report is clear. Indeed, nine of the 10 commissioners agreed that the CRA was not a factor of significance in the crisis.

As we detail in the report, many subprime lenders were not even subject to the CRA and the vast majority of subprime lending was unrelated to the law. For example, according to a 2008 analysis by two Federal Reserve economists who looked at 14 million loans made in 2006, only 6 percent of higher-priced loans (a proxy for subprime mortgages) were made to low and moderate income borrowers or in low and moderate income neighborhoods by banks and thrifts (and their subsidiaries and affiliates) covered by the CRA.

Importantly, another study by economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco showed that loans made by CRA-regulated lenders were half as likely to default as similar loans made in the same neighborhoods by mortgage lenders not subject to the law. An additional argument against the CRA is that so-called “community lending commitments” or “CRA commitments” by banks were the cause of risky loans. These commitments were generally promises by financial institutions to lend and invest in specific communities, apart from any requirements of the CRA.

Under this theory, as public scrutiny was focused on proposed mergers, banks would make these pledges to secure approval for the merger by the Federal Reserve Board or other regulators; the banks then originated unsound loans in order to meet these obligations. Here, too, the evidence in the report clearly refutes this argument. Importantly, the Federal Reserve Board — according to both external and confidential internal documents — never considered these pledges in its decision-making on mergers.

The rules implementing the 1995 changes to the CRA made it clear that “an institution’s record of fulfilling these types of agreements [with third parties] is not an appropriate CRA performance criterion.”

For example, at the time of their application to merge in 1998, BankAmerica and Nationsbank pledged $350 billion in community lending over the following 10 years.

However, the Fed’s internal staff memorandum recommending approval states, “The Board considers CRA agreements to be agreements between private parties and has not facilitated, monitored, judged, required, or enforced agreements or specific portions of agreements.”

The public order is even clearer: “The Board believes that the CRA plan — whether made as a plan or as an enforceable commitment — has no relevance in this case.”

Even in the face of such overwhelming evidence, some still cling to their ideological theories as to the cause of the crisis. As our nation begins to recover, and as we debate the future of our financial markets in the United States, the facts should guide our way.

And that is why these same sorts of lenders are going after college students. They can make money off of them.

BlahBlahBlah

July 20th, 2012
6:50 pm

Smart people will always prey upon stupid people. Hire a million regulators and pass a million laws and that fact won’t change.

Dr. Craig Spinks/ Georgians for Educational Excellence

July 20th, 2012
7:01 pm

A physician of my acquaintance paid off his student loans at the rate of $1K per month for 20 years.

How will college grads with huge loan balances and no jobs pay off their loans? They won’t.

Are we facing a smaller-scale version of the mortgage fiasco? Have these student loans been sliced, diced and sold off around the world, too?

An aside: A retired Desert Storm vet-friend is completing his M.B.A. To do so, he needs to borrow $7K. His college financial advisor has suggested that he borrow the maximum for which he qualified($25K) and use the balance($18K) for other personal expenses. My friend declined to borrow the max.

A-B-U-S-E.

EduKtor

July 20th, 2012
7:15 pm

Maureen, there are no shortage of industry authorities who point the finger at the Community Reinvestment Act for forcing banks (under threat of government lawsuits) to provide home loans to unqualified minorities—i.e., to blacks—and the worldwide disaster that has resulted.

Here’s a recent Investors Business Daily editorial discussing it: http://goo.gl/HCxCT

niecey

July 20th, 2012
7:43 pm

@EduKtor, why single out the blacks? what does that capital ‘K’ stand for? js

Dr. Proud Black Man

July 20th, 2012
8:16 pm

“@EduKtor, why single out the blacks? what does that capital ‘K’ stand for?”

Probably klukker! :0

Lee

July 20th, 2012
8:46 pm

At the end of the day, an 18-24 year old ADULT consumer makes a choice to sign the dotted line and borrow a bunch of money to enroll in a degree program that has the earnings potential of a peach pit, don’t come crying to me.

Experience can be painful b-tch sometimes, but the more painful, the least likely you are to forget.

Tony

July 20th, 2012
9:07 pm

And as for-profit companies bully their way into our communities to run charter schools, we will see similar things happen. It may not be in the form of student loans, but the unscrupulous business practices and the ever increasing need to show more profit will ruin our schools.

Old School

July 20th, 2012
9:48 pm

Read the fine print before consolidating those student or PLUS loans. A 10 year payoff plan can blossom to a 20 year one just because the lenders can make it so.

Solutions

July 20th, 2012
9:54 pm

As the five year party rolls into the sixth year, the debt burden grows ever higher, and the whines for debt forgiveness grows ever louder. I say “NEVER.” Only GSA give a more expensive party than the current ongoing one on the college campuses. Have you noticed that anything the Feds throw dollars at rapidly inflates in cost, but declines in quality. Health care, check, social security disability retirement, check, education, check, war, double check.

William Casey

July 21st, 2012
12:46 am

Are my son’s Mom and I the only ones who began saving for our son’s college education the year he was born?

Truth in Moderation

July 21st, 2012
2:10 am

Maureen, you lost me the minute you quoted economists at the Federal Reserve Bank.
The correct order of things:
Wall Street backs Bill Clinton and as a thank you, he pitches and gets passed a new and improved Community Reinvestment Act. The Too Big to Fail minions are waiting in the wings with Fannie Mae to railroad through as many bogus loans as possible, using an illegal system of forging loan documents to speed up the process. Like a factory operation, the loans are passed back to Wall Street who slices and dices them into “institutional grade securities” etc. and passes the toxic waste on at lightning speed. Then, the TBTF “investment banks” make bets (credit default swaps) AGAINST the known toxic loans, making out like the bandits they are. With utter audacity, they then got Congress to grant them the power to turn back into an “ordinary” mom and pop bank (repeal of Glass Steagall), so they could suck up the TARP BAILOUT FUNDS!

Documentation:
“Among his(President Clinton) biggest strokes of free-wheeling capitalism was the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, which repealed the Glass-Steagall Act, a cornerstone of Depression-era regulation. He also signed the Commodity Futures Modernization Act, which exempted credit-default swaps from regulation. In 1995 Clinton loosened housing rules by rewriting the Community Reinvestment Act, which put added pressure on banks to lend in low-income neighborhoods.”

Read more: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1877351_1877350_1877322,00.html #ixzz21EaZ3tVT
http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/the-great-american-bubble-machine-20100405

[...] Solve Student Loan Woes?Smartmoney.com (blog)Christian Science Monitor -msnbc.com (blog) -Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)all 326 news articles » Tags: [...]

Lexi

July 21st, 2012
3:34 am

Maureen:

Were these bundled “sub-prime loans” sold to unsuspecting investors, without recourse, or were the investors able to force the sellers of these loans to buy them back after default? I am trying to understand what financial incentive existed for lenders, seeking profits, to make loans they knew could not be paid back, and investors to continue to buy loans they had reason, over time, to believe were bad.

Lexi

July 21st, 2012
3:45 am

BTW, Phil Angelides, chairman of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, is a career democrat politician, who, among other accomplishments, served as treasurer of the state of California, leading it to the promised land through the traditional sound financial practices for which his party is so well known. The Commission, cast as “bi-partisan,” was hand selected by our president and highly partisan, and its pronouncements reflected democrat party dogma.

[...] Visit link: Feds: Sub-prime-style lenders burying college students in mountains of debt – Atlanta Journal … [...]

John Konop

July 21st, 2012
7:58 am

The problem is middle class wages have been on a decline since 1973, while education cost has skyrocketed. Our policy has been no matter what party is to provide irrational levels go government backed debt to cover up for falling wages ie student loans, home loans…….backed by tax payers. I warned about this issue years ago and was called chicken little before we had the economic crisis. Once again both sides are debating around the edges and avoiding the core problem of falling wages and education cost out of control. Unless we are honest about this situation, we cannot fix the problem.

WAW

July 21st, 2012
8:05 am

Georgia had a chance to avoid Predatory Lending practices that has caused it to have one of the highest rates of foreclosures in the nation. Let alone the highest number of banks taken over by the FDIC to protect depositors.

Here’s what the Federal Reserve had to say about the law when it went into effect:

http://www.frbatlanta.org/pubs/partners/partners-vol_12_no_2-georgias_anti-predatory_lending_law.cfm

and here’s how it ended:

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/03/07/business/georgia-measure-weakens-lending-law.html

You guys need to learn a little about the world’s financial system before you start spouting your political party’s spin as if it is fact. Neither the (D) or (R) (or even Ron Paul) want you understand the facts. I don’t think you are any smarter than the financial experts of Greece or Spain (they thought they understood). Go back and study history related to government finance. You can start with Alexander Hamilton.

bootney farnsworth

July 21st, 2012
8:13 am

@ William,

not at all, but since my kid was born the world has shifted pretty dramatically. the economy has been sluggish for almost 13 years (since the dot com bubble burst), totally in the toilet for 4. I know several people at my old home GPC who after years of frozen wages and skyrocketing benefits costs have had to make several tough choices. college later or electricity now. for the millions out of work, the decisions have been tougher.

at the same time Georgians have allowed themselves to believe a local college education is essentially free due to HOPE. and to be fair to them, the idiots at the legislature has done nothing to discourage this until much too late.

add in the state walking away from its legal obligations and the massive out of economic proportion increases in spending by colleges…..

5 years ago the Farnsworth family college fun was more than sufficent for a batchelors at a USG school. due to the insane increases in tution and related (re: athletics and technology) fees it no
longer is.

bootney farnsworth

July 21st, 2012
8:17 am

while I don’t hold students blameless in this mess, in a very real way we set them up to fail. we live in a sorta capitalist society and don’t teach basic economics in schools.

in this society no child should be able to get a HS degree without at least three years of economics.

Whirled Peas

July 21st, 2012
8:41 am

“nine of the 10 commissioners agreed that the CRA was not a factor of significance in the crisis.”

Nine out of 10 of the commissioners were political appointees and if they had said anything different, they would have lost their jobs.

Get the government out of the loan business. Anything the government touches will sooner or later be full of waste, fraud and abuse.

Government lending is creating an education bubble just like government entities Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac created a housing bubble. The “education bubble” will burst one day and the taxpayers will be forced to deal with all this debt. It will end up adding to the $16 trillion national debt created by Obama and Maureen Dowd’s Democratic friends. Remember, debt that cannot be paid back, will not be paid back. I don’t care what the law declares.

Dr. Lamar Snarkman

July 21st, 2012
9:18 am

There are three choices: 1) allow folks to borrow lots of money to attend college and make them live with the consequences; 2) restore public tax support for public education; or 3) live with the idea that only rich people can attend college.

Atlanta Mom

July 21st, 2012
9:22 am

CRA loans and subprime loans are completely unrelated, as Maureen explained above. Independent studies of the CRA have shown it to be a successful program with a lower default rate from “normal” loans made by the banks making the CRA loans.
http://www.businessweek.com/investing/insights/blog/archives/2008/09/community_reinv.html

redweather

July 21st, 2012
9:40 am

@ Atlanta Mom, I’m sure you know this, but some people who post here have no use for facts.

Mary Elizabeth

July 21st, 2012
9:48 am

“The problem is middle class wages have been on a decline since 1973, while education cost has skyrocketed.”

=====================================================

I have seen evidence, from many sources, for falling middle class wages over the past three decades, but I have not seen evidence for “skyrocketing” education costs over the same period of time. Please cite your sources, and give hard evidence, for your statement regarding education costs. Thank you.

Mary Elizabeth

July 21st, 2012
9:58 am

P.S. I believe you are referring only to “skyrocketing” higher education (college) costs, not education costs, in general. Please state that, if it is that to which you are referring. Also, please differentiate between the increased costs for public vs. private higher education costs, over the same period of time. Thanks.

Chris Sanchez

July 21st, 2012
10:00 am

The whole point of writing loans is to make a profit on the loan. Duh! Consumers should go into any financial discussion about taking on debt fully understanding what they are borrowing for, the benefit to them, and understanding that they bear the responsibility for repaying the money. If someone is a lousy credit risk and they have to pay more to borrow money then welcome to the grown-ups table. Have a seat!

Why exactly are private, for-profit schools being targeted? The cost of a degree from a public institution would be much the same as one from a for-profit school where it not subsidized by the taxpayers of the state. Don’t believe me? Consider the cost of out-of-state tuition and you get a better idea of what the real cost is. Me thinks the government finds the competition distasteful!

Fred in DeKalb

July 21st, 2012
10:07 am

Great information you shared, Truth in Moderation! Another fact that many in GA don’t talk much about is regarding the number of banks that failed in GA. What kind of loans do you think many of them passed through on their books? Yes, there are a LOT of people that made money on these programs and usually the weakest were left holding the bag.

Unfortunately some on the DSW blog believe the financial crisis should be blamed on the DeKalb BOE, especially those that represent south DeKalb. While I have issues with BOE members, I won’t got that far with my frustration.

Pride and Joy

July 21st, 2012
10:18 am

William Casey, We started saving too — when I was pregnant but I am not saving enough for retirement. I make a good solide middle class salary and live incredibly humbly and modestly. If I can’t do enough, I know less fortunate others cannot do it either. Medical insurance premiums alone are a killer — 5k just for me, not including the kids. Property taxes are huge for me on my tiny little home and child care is very expensive. I live so humbly and modestly, you might think I was poor.

Bill

July 21st, 2012
10:25 am

Most Americans are not terribly sophisticated financially. This is even more true of young Americans. Sub-Prime lenders recognize this and use it to their advantage. This is easily solved.

These lenders make loans to people they know cannot repay. Then they package and sell the loans, just like mortgage lenders. Require the institution to hold any loans they make. If they have to hold the risk, they will be more prudent.

Allow student loans to be dismissed in bankruptcy. This used to be the case, until these same lending institutions lobbied to change the law. Again, if they are at risk, they will be more cautious.

Bill

July 21st, 2012
10:27 am

Chris,
“Why exactly are private, for-profit schools being targeted?”
Because they use tactics that are the same as the sub-prime lenders. They target people who are less sophisticated, then sell them on degree programs that in many cases are inferior and for which job opportunities do not exist. Their goal is profit, not education.

Kym

July 21st, 2012
10:31 am

Well I’m in that boat. My family couldn’t afford to send me to college and it’s like that for many kids coming from rural areas. Even by going to a less expensive public university i still have loan debt. There are options for public loans..and I knew better than to get a student loan that was being advertised on television in between music videos. There are options…public loan service forgiveness can qualify for you if you work in ANY sector of the government..second income based repayment is an option. But the real problem is the fact that many twenty something and early thirty yr old adults can not find work! I appreciate the increase in jobs but they are mostly Industrial work. The entire Atlanta job market sucks unless you are in the health care industry IMO… I have applied several times to jobs that I know I am qualified for in the local government but do I get a call back…NO..instead they employ ppl with NO degrees from “round” the way!!!! Quick solution is employ the ppl who put in the work and sacrifice to earn a college degree..pay them a decent salary and loans wail not default.

Bill

July 21st, 2012
10:32 am

Mary Elizabeth,
You are correct, that over the last 30 years, wages have declined. It is also true that the cost of higher education at public universities has increased over that same period much faster than the rate of inflation. This rise in cost closely mirrors a decline in state funding over the same period. If you want to do some research on this, you might start with the Integrated Post-secondary Education Data System (IPEDS).
http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/

Metfan Lou

July 21st, 2012
10:47 am

Now y’all raise your hands if you think this is what will happen? If student loans can be discharged in bankruptcy how many of you think that 100% of student loans will be paid off this way? Right 100 percent of them. Go get the Kewpy Doll, you won! Want to bet their communist professors will advise their good little socialist students to do this as it is owed them? Yes you are right again and you win another Kewpy Doll.

Justine

July 21st, 2012
10:51 am

When I first started college in 1968 you could do a semester of college at the state level for under $500. This was good because it allowed students who could not afford the fancy schools to start at Junior/Community colleges and move to state universities. When the average student graduated college in 1972 they were virtually debt free. You were also able to immediately find a job once you left high school that paid enough money for you to get your own place, buy your own food and live a real life.

The situation with school loans is that they are perpetuated by big business making money off the desire of people who want to have it all at the expense of people who want to have an education.

This country should look at education as an opportunity to return this country to its #1 status. An educated population is an enpowered population. but the 2% do not want the rest of the us to be able to live independent. We are slowly becoming a two level society, those who provide services to the rich and the rich

John Konop

July 21st, 2012
10:58 am

List of simple solutions:

Increases tracks for high school students in school and or joint enrollment that allows them to get the needed certifications, degrees…….before graduation. Tax payers and students not only save money, we have a work ready graduates with skills when they graduate high school.

Increase the availability as well make scheduling easier for university bound students wanting to take college class work in high school. Once again students and tax pyres save money while increasing quality

Increase co-op/intern style eduction in high school as well as college. increases potential income for students, future job opportunities and decreases loan needs.

Decrease and or elimante high stakes testing, one size fit all education. This souls allow us to increase the above solutions as well as decrease adminstrative overhead.

Decrease the amount students can borrow based on potential income ratio of degree.

Tighten performance requirements of school getting government backed loans weighted on job placement, graduate school admission after recieviing degree and graduation rates.

Common Sense

July 21st, 2012
11:02 am

I listened to one graduate complain about the amount of student debt she has, and how she cannot pay it back. She then went on to explain how she enjoyed studying abroad for two years???? Where is the common sense…..if you are borrowing massive amounts of money for higher education….you cannnot afford to study abroad!!!! Maybe she meant she cant pay it back and still take vacations abroad now that she is working!!! Either way, she needs to pay it back…period!