Tuesday, July 13, 2010

End of hiatus

For personal reasons, I've been away from this blog (but not from NFA) for the past two months. I'm now going to return to posting; there's so much to say about the current situation facing faculty and students at UNLV, in NSHE and generally that its going to take some time to get caught up.

To begin, I'll call your attention to the hearings that are being held in the Senate, led by Senator Harkin, on the abuses of federal student loans by profit-driven corporate colleges .

As Senator Harkin makes clear in this article, these abuses have diverted money into the profits of a few companies and taken money away from students needing financial support for their degrees at educationally-driven institutions, like UNLV, CSN and NSC.

If you're a student trying to figure out how to afford tuition increases driven by drastic reductions in state support at UNLV, CSN or NSC, the sad truth is that the resources available to you are fewer because of the abuses described in this article.

Lots of very interesting data in here to support two points that we've known all-along: 1. Educational value can't be measured in terms of profits made or expenses reduced 2. That in the past 20 years, policy-makers allowed for-profit institutions to absorb larger and larger shares of our public and private investment in higher education, which has greatly harmed the value of education our students are receiving across the board.

Its good to see the Congress taking this issue on, by passing two pieces of significant student-financial-aid legislation in 2007 and 2010, which moved $12b (thats billion!) in subsidies to profit-motivated banks into directly available student loans and now to see Senator Hardin bringing some accountability the out-of-control abuse of subsidized loans to pump up profits at the expense of our students', and our society's, education.

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