Durbin: Let's Give Students a Fighting Chance for a Debt-Free Education

ICYMI: Durbin speaks about the for-profit college industry at Senate forum on student debt

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) reminded participants at a forum on college affordability and the student debt crisis that for-profit institutions of higher education enroll only about 10% of all college students, yet take in a disproportionate 20% of the Department of Education’s federal student aid funds while accounting for 44% of student loan defaults.  According to a recent report by Brookings, in 2014, 13 of the top 25 schools whose students owed the most in federal debt were for-profit schools.


“Let’s make sure we give students a fighting chance to get debt-free education.  Let’s make sure that those who are in debt, have a way to get out of it in a sensible and thoughtful way.  And let’s make sure that colleges and universities know they have a responsibility – whether it is in the tuition they charge or in the bookstores where textbooks can cost over $1,000 a year,” said Durbin. 


Durbin’s remarks can be access on his YouTube page


Since the collapse of Corinthian Colleges, Incorporated, the for-profit college industry is experiencing a long overdue reckoning as state and federal investigations and lawsuits against the largest companies continue to accumulate.


  • ITT Tech is under investigation by at least 18 state Attorneys General and the U.S. Department of Justice and is being sued by the New Mexico Attorney General, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Securities and Exchange Commission. 


  • Education Management Corporation is under investigation by at least 14 state Attorneys General and is being sued by the Colorado Attorney General and the U.S. Department of Justice. 


  • Career Education Corporation is under investigation by 21 state Attorneys General. 


Other major for-profit college chains such as DeVry, Westwood, and Kaplan are also facing additional regulatory scrutiny.