The article discusses a number of victims, but this one stood out:
Drew Scott, 26, registered for the for-profit Art Institute to study video game arts because he was attracted to the accelerated program.
â€œI didnâ€™t completely understand what I was getting into,â€ he said. â€œI knew it was more expensive, but at the time, I thought, â€˜they wouldnâ€™t be charging more if it wasnâ€™t better, right?â€™â€
After two years of uneven teaching qualityâ€”â€œsome of the teachers didnâ€™t quite know what they were doingâ€â€”Scott concluded he wasnâ€™t getting his moneyâ€™s worth. He left the program earlier this year, owing $30,000 to the government and $15,000 to his parents. Scott now lives in Seattle and makes $11 an hour working part-time at a game-testing job. â€œI definitely didnâ€™t need to go to schoolâ€ to do this job, he said.
For profit-colleges have poor “optionality.” Instead of providing good opportunities with little danger, they provide mediocre opportunities with higher danger. The Department of Education’s new “Gainful Employment” is a first start, but it is took weak. The “gainful employment” rule should apply to all institutions that receive student loans.
We don’t know what the future holds. We need an educational system that makes learners resilient, even if the world changes. Our test scores are stagnant, our tests are broken, and top-down efforts can’t be the whole solution.
We need to close the road to dead-end non-bankruptable debt. We need a “gainful employment” rule to apply to all colleges and universities. We need to track graduates, to to the PhD level. The Department of Education’s new rules are a good start. But more needs to be done.