The For-Profit College Question

January 09, 2013

For-profit colleges get a bad rap, sometimes for good reason:

According to Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), the [July 2012] Senate report found “overwhelming documentation of exorbitant tuition, aggressive recruiting practices, abysmal student outcomes, taxpayer dollars spent on marketing and profit, and regulatory evasion and manipulation. And these practices are not the exception. They are norm. … ”

A former University of Phoenix counselor echoes the Senate report’s findings. She said that while her goal was to help students graduate, she was encouraged to get to know them and then use their personal information to convince them to stay enrolled longer, even if it wasn’t in their best interest. “It reminded me of an abusive

boyfriend,” said the counselor, who asked that her name not be used in this article.

Winter Outlook 2013.inddThey’re not all “bad actors,” as AAUW Government Relations Manager Anne Hedgepeth says. But since for-profit schools rake in $30 billion a year in taxpayer money, there needs to be a way to stop predatory practices. Read the whole story in the Winter 2013 issue of Outlook magazine.


Hannah Moulton Belec By:   |   January 09, 2013


  1. advocatepat says:

    The existence and financial success of for profit colleges highlights the lack of access to quality,affordable education. PBS and other media have called attention to free, collaborative online courses through Udacity and Coursera among others. If free coursework could be developed and recognized as viable avenues to career preparation, the benefits of education could be more readily accessible. We should keep monitoring this.

  2. jfb says:

    Join us at and on Facebook. It’s time for this predatory lending and corrupt practices to stop. Educating our Nation and youth should be first and foremost, not corporate profiteering.

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