Settlement Brings Debt Relief To Students Of For-Profit Chain

Settlement Brings Debt Relief To Students Of For-Profit Chain

A for-profit higher education company will no longer collect almost a half-billion dollars in student debt, now that the firm has reached settlements with 48 states and the District of Columbia.

CONCORD, NH [Press Release] - Attorney General Gordon J. MacDonald on Thursday announced that for-profit education company Career Education Corp. The attorneys general alleged that CEC pressured its employees to enroll students, made misleading statements and failed to disclose information to prospective students on total costs, transferability of credits, program offerings, and job placement rates.

"This settlement will help hundreds of hardworking New Mexicans continue to reach their educational goals and provide for their families", Balderas said in a statement.

CEC misled students about the total costs of enrollment at its institutions.

The agreement comes amid increased scrutiny on U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos for her handling of student debt and for-profit college's predatory practices.

"For far too long, unscrupulous for-profit colleges have put money before people, engaged in deceptive recruiting practices, and left students with a burden of crushing debt while providing them with useless degrees that wouldn't lead them to gainful employment", said Attorney General Jepsen.

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The settlement, which includes OH, 47 other states, and the District of Columbia, resolves allegations that Career Education Corporation pressured employees to enroll students and misled students or withheld information about the costs of enrollment, job placement rates, ability to transfer credits, and lack of accreditation of some of its programs.

Career Education Corporation (CEC), headquartered in IL, has owned several for-profit schools, including Le Cordon Bleu, Briarcliffe College, Brooks Institute, Brown College, Harrington College of Design and International Academy of Design & Technology (later known as Sanford-Brown).

CEC now offers courses through American InterContinental University and Colorado Technical University. On October 16, a federal judge rejected a challenge to the Borrower Defense Rule, ordering its immediate implementation for students nationwide. Nationally, the average individual debt relief will be about $2,750; approximately 1,415 former students residing in CT will receive debt relief through this settlement. Both were in Tukwila. More than 90 percent of its students are enrolled through online courses, according to the company.

In addition to debt relief, the company must give prospective students accurate information about cost, graduation rates, job-placement rates and debt.

CEC officials have denied any wrongdoing and called the case an "important milestone" in the company's history.

The deal was made with all states except California, which is negotiating with the company separately, and NY, which previously reached a deal with the company.

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