NORWALKPLUS.COM: Murphy, Harkin announce “Students Before Profits Act”
Career College Central Summary:
On Wednesday, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) announced that he introduced the Students Before Profits Act to help protect students from deceptive practices and bad actors in the for-profit college sector. Drafted jointly with HELP Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), the Students Before Profits Act will put power back in students’ hands by allowing them to make better informed decisions about what school to attend, while also holding subpar schools accountable. The bill would help to address many of the issues identified in the groundbreaking 2012 investigation of for-profit colleges Harkin led as Chairman of the HELP Committee.
“While some for-profit schools are doing a good job of delivering a quality education in innovative ways, too many are putting their bottom lines ahead of students’ best interests,” said Murphy. “When schools leave students with worthless degrees and saddled with debt, while getting the vast majority of their revenue from taxpayer dollars, they need to be held accountable by the federal government. The Students Before Profits Act will let students know what they’re getting from their college, and ensure that there are consequences when schools aren’t transparent about costs, accreditation, job placement, and other metrics. I’m proud to have worked on this important bill with Chairman Harkin, who has been such a champion on this issue for so many years, and I will keep fighting for students in the next Congress.”
“My investigation made clear that taxpayers have been making a huge annual investment in for-profit colleges that continue to leave millions of students with high debt but little increased earning potential,” Harkin said. “I am proud to cosponsor the Students Before Profits Act, a bill that takes concrete steps to hold for-profit colleges accountable for their students’ success. This bill builds upon provisions included in my Higher Education Affordability Act, and I am encouraged to see that strong champions in the next Congress will continue to work of ensuring that for-profit higher education companies are accountable to students and taxpayers alike. Senator Murphy has been a strong partner in this effort and his advocacy and action in the next Congress will help continue the work the HELP Committee has led to ensure every family has access to a quality, affordable education.”
For too long, some for-profit schools have failed America’s neediest students, despite the fact that the majority of their revenue comes from federal dollars. The for-profit college industry enrolls just 13% of all postsecondary school students, but accounts for nearly half of all student loan defaults across the country. In addition to crippling amounts of student loan debt, too many students leave a for-profit college with worthless credits and degrees, and, ultimately, dismal job prospects upon graduation – if they can afford to complete their course load. In fact, 72% of for-profit programs produce graduates who earn less, on average, than high school dropouts.
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