Politics

Here's One Last Request For-Profit College Students Have for Barack Obama

December 5th 2016

By:
Danielle DeCourcey

A group of former students from Corinthian Colleges, ITT Technical Institutes, and Art Institutes want the president's help — before the president becomes Donald J. Trump.

The Washington Post's Danielle Douglas-Gabriel reports that a group of students working with Debt Collective, an advocacy organization for people with large student loans, is asking the Obama administration to cancel their loan debt faster.  

Dear President Obama, For two years, we've lobbied your Department of Education to cancel our fraudulent student loans....

Posted by Debt Collective on Monday, December 5, 2016

The Department of Education received 82,000 claims in early October for loan cancelations from sanctioned for-profit colleges, but only 19 percent have been approved. All came from former students from Corinthian Colleges, which shut down after claims it defrauded students, according to the Post. 

“We have a president coming into office who is likely to be very unsympathetic to our cause," Ann Larson, a Debt Collective co-director, told ATTN: "Trump owned a for-profit school and he recently settled a lawsuit with students claiming he defrauded them and lied to them." 

Trump settled three separate lawsuits against his now closed Trump University for $25 million last month. The money will go to more than 6,000 people in California, Florida, and New York, who said that the real estate school made false claims to get their money. 

obama

The organization is reaching out to members of Congress and state politicians to get students' debts canceled quickly. 

"We have high level people who have been lobbying for this, and now we've just got a couple weeks left," said Larson.

ITT Tech announced it was closing in September after the Department of Education put sanctions on the for-profit school and barred it from admitting new students. 

Corinthian Colleges closed last year after it was fined $30 million from the Department of Education for defrauding students. The DOE offered a "closed school discharge" of federal loans to students who were enrolled in fraudulent schools when they closed, and it also offered other other types of potential cancelations to students who were no longer attending the schools.

 

However, with limited time left in the Obama administration, many students are still waiting to find out if their loans will be canceled.

“I’ve called the hotline, and all I’m told is there’s really not much they can do, you have to wait,” Nathan Hornes, who attended Corinthian's Everest College and applied for loan cancellation two years ago, told the Post. “They just don’t seem to care. [The Education Department] knows that the school was fraudulent because they filed all of these charges, slapped them with all of these fines.”

ATTN: reached out to Trump's transition team and Debt Collective for comment. We will update the story if we hear back. 

RELATED: ITT Technical Institute Is Shutting Its Doors