Inspired by Flemish portrait paintings, in which the wealthy would have themselves painted with all their worldly possessions around them, photographer Brittany M. Powell realized that, by photographing indebted people in their households, she was also capturing their debt.
New York Times:
Mr. Duncan also said the department planned to develop a process to allow any student — whether from Corinthian or elsewhere — to be forgiven their loans if they had been defrauded by their colleges. A special master would be appointed within three weeks, department officials said, to create procedures to apply for relief that are “durable, not just for Corinthian but beyond.”Previously, previouslier. [more inside]
It struck me as absurd that one could amass crippling debt as a result, not of drug addiction or reckless borrowing and spending, but of going to college. Having opened a new life to me beyond my modest origins, the education system was now going to call in its chits and prevent me from pursuing that new life, simply because I had the misfortune of coming from modest origins. [more inside]
Following up on the story of the Corinthian 15 (previously on the blue), Corinthian Colleges has formally ceased operations and is selling or shutting down its campuses. In the meantime, the US Department of Education has helpfully provided a list of "viable transfer options" [PDF]. Minor problem: some of those for-profit schools are also under investigation. [more inside]
...Natasha, Nathan, Jessica, Amanda, Ashlee, Deanda, Dawn, Makenzie, and Tasha. These are the names of the Corinthian 15, as signed to an open letter to the US Department of Education stating their refusal to repay their federal student loans. Their website includes a photo of each of the fifteen, and a brief story of each one's encounter with the for-profit Corinthian Colleges system, which is now being dismantled. (It operated colleges called Everest, Heald, and Wyotech.) Related stories from The Atlantic, Washington Post, The New Yorker, Consumerist, Inside Higher Ed, and Al Jazeera America. [more inside]
Washington Monthly has attempted to identify America's worst colleges.
The most striking feature of the Direct PLUS Loan program is that it limits neither the amount that a school can charge for attendance nor the amount that can be borrowed in federal loans. "This is, for a private-equity firm, a remarkably attractive arrangement: the investors get their money up front, in the form of the tuition paid for by student loans. Meanwhile, any subsequent default on those loans is somebody else’s problem—in this case, the federal government’s." [more inside]
Inside a For-Profit College Nightmare (SLSalon)
Ripping Off Young America: The College-Loan Scandal. "The federal government has made it easier than ever to borrow money for higher education - saddling a generation with crushing debts and inflating a bubble that could bring down the economy."
Student loans? WHATEVER Not quite so "dope" when they try to drag you out of your window and kill you. (SLYT)
In 2003, only two colleges charged more than $40,000 a year for tuition, fees, room, and board. Six years later more than two hundred colleges charged that amount. What happened between 2003 and 2009 was the start of the recession. By driving down endowments and giving tax-starved states a reason to cut back their support for higher education, the recession put new pressure on colleges and universities to raise their price. When our current period of slow economic growth will end is anybody’s guess, but even when it does end, colleges and universities will certainly not be rolling back their prices. These days, it is not just the economic climate in which our colleges and universities find themselves that determines what they charge and how they operate; it is their increasing corporatization. If corporatization meant only that colleges and universities were finding ways to be less wasteful, it would be a welcome turn of events. But an altogether different process is going on[more inside]
With the number of LSAT test takers in sharp decline, has the law school tuition bubble finally burst?
Want your new law school to get accredited by the American Bar Association? Be prepared to jump through some hoops.
The Face of Student Debt: Natalia Antonova stopped paying when she realized that it was the loans or her child. (The response has been telling.) Kristin Rawls demands solidarity. Glenn Reynolds says colleges should pay for defaulters.
"The proportion of freshmen and sophomores at four-year colleges who will default on federal loans over their lifetime is estimated at between 19 and 31 percent, depending on the type of loan and when it was written, the [DOE's] Office of Inspector General wrote in a 2003 audit."(doc)
Dorothy Gambrell of Cat And Girl fame spends an awful lot of time talking about education, class, debt, money, and the hollow promise of aspirational media to discuss how much she hates Good Will Hunting
Since 2005, it has been nearly impossible to discharge student loans in bankruptcy. HR 2028 and S.1102 aim to make private student loans again dischargeable in bankruptcy. [more inside]
Put another way, the company that owns The Washington Post is almost entirely at the mercy of the Federal Government and the Obama administration -- the entities which its newspaper ostensibly checks and holds accountable. "By the end of 2010, more than 90 percent of revenue at Kaplan’s biggest division and nearly a third of The Post Co.’s revenue overall came from the U.S. government." The Post Co.'s reliance on the Federal Government extends beyond the source of its revenue; because the industry is so heavily regulated, any animosity from the Government could single-handedly doom the Post Co.'s business... -- Glenn Greenwald examines WaPo's entanglement with for-profit education
The Student Loan Scheme: Gateway Drug to Debt Slavery...Americans now owe more on their student loans than they do on credit cards. With for-profit universities under recent scrutiny, many argue that the student loan industry itself is in need of more reform.
A short video explaining the new Income Based Repayment going into effect July 1st Your student loans might be more manageable soon. [courtesy of IBRinfo.org].
Forgiving student loan debt to stimulate the economy is an idea that seems to be gaining some ground recently. There's a petition, at least two facebook groups, and call to contact your senators and representatives.
CNN reports that the House passed HR 4241 this morning by a narrow vote almost entirely along party lines. This is part of the Republican Party's Operation Offset (previously discussed here) designed to cut spending to counter the deficit, growing by leaps and bounds because of Iraq & Katrina (among other things). Now they'll have to work to reconcile it with the Senate version, SR 1932 (voting record here). You may want to Write your representative to let them know how you feel. You might also want to express your displeasure to the two Dems who didn't vote, considering the bill passed by a margin of 2. [Budget Filter]
Is student loan debt destroying your life? Loan indebtedness has increased 66% since 1997. It's hard to feel too sorry for Yale Law grads making $100,000+, but I know real people with salaries in the mid-40s making payments in the range of $1600/mo. (And that's over 30 years.) When will policymakers realize that this is going to have substantial consequences for our economy and quality of life?
Ted Rall says that college loans are killing America. I'm inclined to agree. At just $14,736, I'm on the lighter-side of college loan debt, but being a single father, I have a hard time making a dent. Ted makes some salient points about young adults who are struggling to make money in a recession. They don't work for the Peace Corps, they don't volunteer, etc. Even China criticizes America on our insistence that students endebt themselves to corporations just for education.(via fark)