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The U.S. Division of Training on Tuesday announced it can cancel all remaining federal pupil debt for former college students of the now-defunct for-profit Westwood Faculty, delivering $1.5 billion in reduction to 79,000 debtors.
The cancellation covers college students who attended any location of Westwood Faculty, together with on-line applications, from Jan. 1, 2002 to Nov. 17, 2015, when the varsity stopped enrollment forward of its 2016 closure.
The forgiveness will occur robotically, no matter whether or not former college students have utilized for a borrower protection discharge, the Training Division mentioned.
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“Westwood Faculty’s exploitation of scholars and abuse of federal monetary support place it in the identical circle of infamy occupied by Corinthian Colleges and ITT Technical Institute,” mentioned Below Secretary James Kvaal within the announcement. “Westwood operated on a tradition of false guarantees, lies and manipulation in an effort to revenue off pupil debt that burdened debtors lengthy after Westwood closed.”
The division discovered the varsity routinely misled potential college students by “grossly misrepresenting” the worth of its credentials, together with inflated job placement charges and earnings potential.
What’s extra, Westwood Faculty offered college students with a false “employment pledge,” vowing to assist attendees with post-graduation payments in the event that they weren’t employed inside six months, the findings present.
Larger schooling skilled Mark Kantrowitz informed CNBC the newest discharge is “a continuation of the work that the Division of Training has achieved, utilizing current pupil mortgage forgiveness and discharge applications to handle inequities.”
The Division has now accredited $14.5 billion in pupil mortgage cancellation for practically 1.1 million debtors whose schools took benefit of them, in line with the discharge.
“The Biden-Harris Administration will proceed ramping up oversight and accountability to guard college students and taxpayers from abuse and be certain that executives who commit such hurt by no means work at establishments that obtain federal monetary support once more,” Kvaal added.