A New Foundation of Scholarship to Protect Borrowers

By Dalié Jiménez, Jonathan Glater, and Stacey Tutt | November 30, 2018

This week, we announced a new partnership between the University of California, Irvine School of Law and SBPC. Our project, the Student Loan Law Initiative, is a first-of-its kind collaboration between scholars and advocates to bring an end to the student debt crisis by creating a new foundation of legal scholarship that works for borrowers.

As the student loan market exploded over the past decade, borrowers have increasingly turned to the courts, regulators, and lawmakers to protect and expand their rights. We watched these efforts play out across the country and what we saw surprised us. Although well-intentioned, these efforts often faltered, lacking a solid foundation of rigorous analysis and comprehensive legal research.

We recognized that, as scholars, we had an opportunity to change this dynamic. Together, we’re working to redefine the field of student loan law and protect borrowers’ rights -– leveraging the expertise of the faculty at UCI Law, the infrastructure of a world-class research institution, and the insight and experience of the former senior government leaders at SBPC.

We’re also looking for academics to help us drive this work forward. By drawing on the insight and expertise of leading scholars across the country, we aim to connect the fields of consumer law, bankruptcy, constitutional law, civil rights, and administrative law and redefine “student loan law” as an academic discipline. By building a new foundation of scholarship on student debt, we can arm policymakers, regulators, and litigants with the tools they need to protect and advance borrowers’ rights.

In the coming months, we’ll unveil a series of new efforts to drive original scholarship on student debt, build better data to expose the breadth of the student debt crisis, and help individual borrowers through UCI’s Consumer Law Clinic.

To learn more about our new collaboration or to find out how you can contribute new, policy-focused scholarship to this effort, contact us at studentloanlaw@protectborrowers.org.

By creating a solid legal footing, together, we can help the 44 million borrowers struggling with student debt.

Professor Dalié Jiménez, Professor Jonathan Glater, and Professor Stacey Tutt serve on the faculty of University of California, Irvine School of Law, where they lead the Student Loan Law Initiative.  

SLLI is the nation’s first academic initiative on student loan law, and will drive cutting-edge research into one of the most pressing challenges facing American families – the student debt crisis.