Sunday’s Last Week Tonight delivered a 16 minute tongue lashing directed at for-profit colleges and their role in the student debt crisis. The schools have been at the center of a congressional investigation and have been called into question by the media and the public for their recruiting tactics and student loan practices. Host John Oliver didn’t hold back in his recap of the situation.
Student loan debt currently tops $1 trillion, and tuition and fees increase every year. In an era of persistent unemployment and declining real value of wages, a prospective student could be forgiven for wondering if it's worth it to go to college at all. Recently, Fusion, a TV and digital network aimed at Millennials, and PayScale examined the question of whether college is still a good investment.
Australians have found themselves in the middle of a debate not unlike the ongoing dispute in the U.S. over the cost of higher education. This year, the Australian government unveiled a proposal that would allow universities to raise tuition without any regulatory restraints. Officials say the changes would make schools more competitive, but opponents believe college in Australia will become unaffordable.
A recent report released by the Institute for Policy Studies finds that student debt and low-wage faculty labor are rising faster at state universities with the highest-paid presidents. Usually those three hotly debated issues: student debt, increased use of part-time faculty, and inflated executive pay are discussed as separate issues, but researchers wondered if the three were related. What they found shows that all three are connected in ways worthy of a Charles Dickens novel.