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 A food drive is underway to assist Charlotte School of Law students, who are faced with the predicament of proceeding to pursue their degrees at the for-profit law school weeks after the institution lost its ability to receive federal student aid from its students.

According to a report from WSOC-TV9, school officials are offering cereal and canned goods to help hungry students, while a GoFundMe campaign is raising money to provide living expense support to students no longer able to receive federal student aid while they aim to complete their degrees.
 
 
A for-profit Texas career college has suddenly closed, stranding students after the school lost its ability to tap into federal student loan programs.

Vantage College announced on its website last week that it was closing, but some students showed up for classes unaware that the school to which they had entrusted funds was out of business.

In a release to student on the Vantage website, the school stated that it “is reviewing options for you to complete your academic programs at other post secondary institutions in the community, and we have identified several institutions that have comparable academic programs and may provide credit for coursework completed on a satisfactory academic basis at our school."


If you have concerns about Vantage or another career college that you wish to share with an attorney at College Watchdogs, you may do here or call 248-502-0862.
 
 
A federal class action lawsuit has been lodged against a for-profit nursing school in Maine, alleging that InterCoast Career Institute's nursing education program at its Kittery campus is a "sham" that has taken advantage of vulnerable students.

The lawsuit, filed this week in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine, alleges that the school filed to provide about 300 nursing students between 2011 and 2016 with quality education needed to obtain licenses and jobs.

According to the lawsuit, InterCoast, which opened its nursing program in 2010, targeted its $36,000 per year program to students in northeaster Massachusetts with radio, video and print ads.

If you are a current or former student, faculty member or administrator of a for-profit school and have concerns about whether the school has taken unfair advantage of its students, you may share your concerns with an attorney by completing this form or calling the attorneys who run this blog at 248-502-0862.
 
 
In one of his final actions before becoming the nation's 45th president, Donald Trump paid $25 million to settle class action claims against his now-defunct Trump University, which stood accused of defrauding students by representing that Trump knew the instructors and that the school was accredited.

While campaigning for president, Trump had vowed never to settle the protracted lawsuit.

A hearing is set for March 31, 2017 to approve a proposed settlement of the case that would allow former students to receive refunds of roughly half of their tuition paid for the controversial real estate seminars. In the meantime, Trump's $25 million will be held in escrow. The money was put into escrow three days before Trump's inauguration.
 
 
The federal Consumer Financial Protection is accusing the nation's largest servicer of federal and private student loans of engaging in widespread deception of consumers, causing harm to the credit of borrower, including even disabled veterans.

In a lawsuit filed January 18, the CFPB alleges that Navient, formerly Sallie Mae, has violated numerous federal laws, including the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act.

A news release from the bureau states that, "For years, Navient . . . created obstacles to repayment by providing bad information, processing payments incorrectly, and failing to act when borrowers complained. Through shortcuts and deception, the company also illegally cheated many struggling borrowers out of their rights to lower repayments, which caused them to pay much more than had to for their loans."

The CFPB is seeking relief for borrowers for "these illegal servicing failures."

In a statement, CFPB Director Richard Cordray stated, "At every stage of repayment, Navient chose to shortcut and deceive consumers to save operating costs. Too many borrowers paid more for their loans because Navient illegally cheated them."

Navient services loans for more than 12 million borrowers, including more than 6 million accounts under a 
 
 
A new federal report reveals that the the number of student loan borrowers who are age 60 and old has sharply increased in recent years due in part to their role as co-signers on loans for their children and grandchildren. 

The report was released this month by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Office for Older Americans  and Office for Students and Young Consumers.

The number of consumers who are 60 or older with one or more student loans increased from approximately 700,000 in 2005 to 2.8 million in 2015 and the group's average amount of debt increased from $12,100 to $23,500, according to the report.

These numbers highlight that the student loan debt crisis -- fueled largely by predatory for-profit colleges' enrollment tactics -- affects Americans of all ages.
 
 
More than 4,500 students of the closed American Career Institute will be eligible for cancellation of federal student loan debt under a deal announced by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.

The for-profit ACI operated in Massachusetts and Maryland before suddenly closing in 2013.

Healey and U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) worked with the U.S. Department of Education on the deal that will allow former students of ACI to have the balance of their loan debt wiped out and to receive refunds on debt payments already made.

The Boston Herald reported that the deal came after the school was sued by Healey "over fraud allegations and admitted to misleading students."
 
 
Sage College, a California school specializing in training court reporters, suddenly closed this week, stranding about 350 students who received e-mails about the closure only days earlier, according to a report in the Riverside Press-Enterprise.

The newspaper reports that, "Sage College is the latest in a series of private for-profit colleges to abruptly quit the business. Unlike some other such institutions, however, there were no claims that the school had a bad actor. Instead, it fell victim to the actions of its accrediting agency, the Accrediting Council of Independent Colleges and Schools." 

In December, the accreditor, ACICS, lost a final appeal to retain its standing with the U.S. Department of Education to retain its status as an accrediting entity.  As a result, schools like Sage lost their accreditation status because they had been accredited by ACICS. Such schools had 18 months to find another accrediting agency.

Sage disclosed via an FAQ page this week that it had discovered it would be difficult to gain accreditation from a different entity. “We learned that Court Reporting programs do not meet required benchmarks to qualify for the approval process,” the material says, “therefore moving forward in that direction was not a viable option for us.”
 
 
In another blow to two for-profit colleges in Minnesota that recently announced closure plans, a judge has ordered that Globe University and Minnesota School of Business to pay restitution to more than 1,200 "defrauded students," according to a report in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

According to the newspaper, "Those affected will be eligible to be repaid for tuition, including student loans, payments for books and other fees, and any interest or finance charges they incurred while criminal justice students after January 2009, according to a court order signed [January 4.]"

After a trial last year in state court, a judge ruled that the schools' recruitment and marketing policies ignored or obscured requirements for licensing in criminal justice fields and "serve as a trap for the unwary."

The schools said in a statement that they were disappointed by the order and considering an appeal.
 
 
Two for-profit colleges based in Minnesota are closing their campuses in several states  after the U.S. Department of Education denied them further access to federal student aid funds.

The schools, Globe University and Minnesota School of Business, offered programs in Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin. According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, the two for-profit schools were denied federal student aid in December 2016 after the U.S. Department of Education "said they had committed fraud with Title IV funding and 'knowingly misrepresented' transfer eligibility for their criminal-justice programs." 

Globe has indicated that students will be able to transfer to Broadview University, another for-profit school,  for "teach out purposes."  Minnesota School of Business students will be able to continue in classes through January 2016, and its students in a nursing program will reportedly be able to transfer to Concordia University of St. Paul.