ERIC Number: ED499899
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Student Loans and Public Accountability. Policy Matters: A Higher Education Policy Brief
American Association of State Colleges and Universities
With nearly two out of every three college graduates having borrowed money to pay for their higher education, the multi-billion dollar student-loan industry plays a ubiquitous role in students' college participation and success. Recent state and federal investigations have uncovered illegal and unethical practices in the student-loan industry. Policy implications stemming from this scandal will permeate higher education as college presidents continue to find themselves in the middle of federal, state, system, and institutional efforts to reform the administration of student loans. In order to regain public trust damaged by the scandal and progress toward greater accountability, college leaders should consider the following recommendations: (1) Invest in training and other professional development opportunities for campus financial-aid employees; (2) Preserve relationships with student-loan-advisory committees, but do not allow college financial-aid officials to accept compensation for their service on them; and (3) Colleges and systems should follow a code of conduct that prescribes appropriate and ethical standards for all financial-aid employees. Preventing and correcting unethical and illegal conflicts of interest on college campuses will ultimately improve the financial system that millions of students use to pay for their higher education. Given that the lending investigations are an extension of far-reaching calls for greater accountability throughout higher education, the controversy serves as a strong reminder of the need to bring about positive change and affirm college leaders' commitment to serving the public trust. A list of resources is included.
Descriptors: Higher Education, Campuses, Employees, Investigations, Advisory Committees, Conflict of Interest, College Graduates, Accountability, Student Loan Programs, Educational Finance, Paying for College, Professional Development, State Departments of Education, Student Interests
American Association of State Colleges and Universities. 1307 New York Avenue NW Fifth Floor, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-293-7070; Fax: 202-296-5819; Web site: http://www.aascu.org
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: American Association of State Colleges and Universities, Washington, DC.
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Higher Education Act 1965