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A small, non-profit college has launched an innovative initiative during an era in which graduates at many colleges and universities -- particularly for-profit institutions -- finish school with crushing debt and no job prospects.
Adrian College, a liberal arts college with 1,700 students located in Adrian, Michigan, is promising incoming students that they will either earn $37,000 per year following graduation or receive student loan relief.  The program is being paid for by the college through the purchase of insurance policies.
According to a report from the Associated Press, "Adrian paid roughly $575,000 this year, or $1,165 per student, to take out policies on 495 students. For those who graduate and get a job that pays less than $20,000 a year, the college will make full monthly student loan payments until they make $37,000 a year. With a job that pays $20,000 to $37,000, the college will make payments on a sliding scale. There’s no time limit for the payment plan, but the college caps total loan payments at $70,000 per student. Adrian’s annual cost of tuition, room and board is about $40,000 before any forms of financial aid."





 
 
The Courier-Post, a newspaper covering southern New Jersey, reports that for-profit schools in that area are likely to be affected by new federal regulations requiring programs to demonstrate that their career-oriented programs actually help students succeed.  
New gainful employment rules unveiled by the Obama Administration in late 2014 will track data relating to graduates' post-graduation earnings and loan debt aimed at requiring career colleges to be a "stepping stone" to the middle class, and not a place where students are buried in debt with little to show for it, according to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.
The newspaper quotes one southern New Jersey educator, Dahn Shaulis, as stating that "it's time students stop falling prey to deceptive advertising campaigns from career colleges that result in low-paying jobs and a need to return to local community colleges for more education."
Students and educators with concerns about particular career schools that they are interested in sharing with attorneys who pursue claims against relating to misrepresentations, lack of accreditation, and the absence of job placement by sending an e-mail to contact@collegewatchdogs.net or clicking here.

 
 
The Marianas Variety reports that the College of the Marshall Islands is hoping to get its warning status from its accrediting body lifted due to improved financial health.  According to the Pacific Islands publication, the college ended its fiscal year with a positive balance for the second year in a row.  CMI's accrediting body, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, warned the school two years that it could lose its accreditation due to financial losses, a low contingency fund, and a low endowment.  The accreditor will visit CMI in March 2015, with further action on the issue of accreditation expected as early as June 2015.  

 
 
A new government report faults the accrediting agencies that monitor the nation's colleges and universities, finding inadequate oversight particularly with regard to those schools that fail to prepare their students. 
The report, published by the non-partisan Government Accounting Office (GAO), analyzes data  from October 2009 through March 2014, and finds in part that "schools with weaker student outcomes were, on average, no more likely to have been sanctioned by accreditors than schools with stronger student outcomes."  The report also finds that poor finances is the overwhelmingly most often reason for accreditor sanctions, rather than poor student preparation or outcomes. BusinessWeek concludes that "accreditation groups are paying too much attention to schools’ finances and not enough to the quality of the education they offer, or the value of the degree students walk away with."



 
 
Kentucky's Mid-Continent University has lost its accreditation, creating questions about the impact of this development on students and graduates.  Mid-Continent ceased instruction effective June 30, 2014, offering teach out opportunities to students.
As reported by NBC affiliate WPSD, the university based in Mayfield lost its accreditation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS) after failing to comply a series of core requirements, including faculty competence, student support services, and financial stability. 
Accreditation is required for an institution of higher education like Mid-Continent University to be eligible for state and federal financial aid for student tuition, which is the lifeblood of most colleges and universities.  
The chair of Mid-Continent's Board of Trustees, Tom Butler, told WPSD that he didn't know of any plans to appeal the loss of accreditation, but he said the school did intend to resume classes for students at a later date to be determined.
Loss of accreditation can adversely effect students and graduates with regard to issues like credit transfers.
According to its own website, Mid-Continent is a  "Great Commission, Baptist, undergraduate and graduate, teaching institution whose primary purpose is to provide Christ-centered quality higher education."
If you have concerns about how Mid-Continent's loss of accreditation has impacted you that you wish to share with attorneys who investigate and pursue claims against universities that harm students, you may do so here or call 1-877-540-8333.

 
 
The American Bar Association, the nation's leading accreditor of law schools, has deferred a decision about whether to approve the controversial sale of Charleston School of Law to a for-profit company, according to a newspaper report.  Before InfiLaw can take over the financially strapped law school, the company must secure a license to operate from the State of South Carolina and ABA approval of the sale.  According to the report, "The law school's faculty is overwhelmingly opposed to the sale along with many students, alumni and members of the state's legal community. They think the company's three other law schools have lower standards than the Charleston school. A sale to InfiLaw would decrease the value of a Charleston School of Law degree, opponents have said."