U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT: 6 Answers for Consumers About the New Gainful Employment Rule

Career College Central Summary:

  • ?The U.S. Department of Education has once again issued a final set of gainful employment regulations. If this sounds familiar, it’s because the department has issued final gainful employment rules in the past too, only to have most of them dismissed in court as a result of a lawsuit filed by an association that represents for-profit colleges and universities.
  • Well, the same association filed another suit attempting to block this new rule.
  • While this rule was written for the benefit of consumers, the 945-page document is not the easiest regulation to digest. The Student Loan Ranger thought that this might be a good time to address some questions we’ve been asked about this rule:
  1. What is the purpose of the gainful employment legislation? The Department of Education is putting gainful employment in place for a number of reasons. In short, it’s to help ensure that students who incur debt for higher education receive a robust enough education that they can obtain the level of employment needed to make repayment of that debt affordable. The rules also aim to provide transparency to prospective students of gainful employment programs.
  2. Does the gainful employment rule affect all college and universities? There is both a yes and no answer to this question. Gainful employment is a program-level regulation that affects almost all programs at for-profit schools – except for some bachelor’s degrees in liberal arts programs –  and most non-degree programs. These include certificate programs at public and private nonprofit institutions.
  3. What is the actual gainful employment rule? The gainful employment rule sets standards and outcome minimums related to student debt levels for programs that provide training for gainful employment. A program that does not meet these minimums risks losing eligibility for all federal student aid, an event that would cause many such programs to fail. 

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