This report is the result of an investigation revealing that public colleges and universities nationwide are driving students toward expensive, predatory student debt. The report highlights how this practice is particularly prevalent at short-term, non-degree granting “bootcamp” programs, especially those offered at public schools through for-profit contractors known as Online Program Managers (OPMs).
Schools’ and lenders’ actions appear to run afoul of key consumer protections, highlighting the need for the Department of Education to vigorously enforce student protections in the Higher Education Act and for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to carefully scrutinize quickly evolving dangers in the student loan market.
Read the Report: Pushing Predatory Products: How Public Universities are Partnering with Unaccountable Contractors to Drive Students Toward Risky Private Debt and Credit
Read the Press Release: New Report Finds Public Universities are Driving Students Toward Risky Private Student Loans
A set of exhibits documenting the SBPC’s findings is available here.
To learn more about the SBPC’s work related to shadow student debt, click here.
A follow-on memo outlining the legal authorities available to the Department of Education, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and individual borrowers to hold the actors involved in the scheme uncovered in Pushing Predatory Products accountable is available here.